iTunes Changed the Steps to Convert WAV to MP3

How to Convert WAV to MP3 in iTunes’ recent update

I use the desktop version of iTunes to convert my finished, exported WAV files to MP3. iTunes uses a codec that is superior to LAME (the plugin available to Audacity). If you want to learn more about the difference in codecs, click here.

However, the process changed on May 17, 2016 in their most recent update (v12.4.0.119).

It used to be super-easy:

  1. Drag & drop the WAV into iTunes (appears in the Music listings)
  2. Right-click to open the additional menu (aka context menu)
  3. Scroll down and click on “Convert to MP3”

The update took away the third step, “Convert to MP3”, in the context menu.


The new process in iTunes

After importing our WAV into iTunes, we need to:

  1. Go to File in the menu bar
  2. Drop down to Create New Version
  3. Click on Create MP3 Version


how to create MP3 in iTunes File, Create New Version, Create MP3 Version


This is not a huge change, but I spent five minutes trying to find it. I hope this tip saved you some time.

How to adjust Import/Convert settings in iTunes

Remember, you can always adjust your settings in iTunes by going to:

  1. PC: Click on Edit in the menu bar, then Properties (MAC: Click on iTunes in the menu bar, then Preferences)
  2. In the General tab, click on “Import Settings
  3. Set the “Import using…” option to the format you want (MP3 Encoder)
  4. Adjust the Setting to what you want


Preferences, Import Settings, Custom, OK2


I convert my WAV files to a standard MP3, 192 kbps at 44.100 kHz Mono. This creates a smaller file than the Stereo option and still sounds great for spoken word content (aka: Podcasts).

To get the best sound out of SPREAKER

If you host on Spreaker, you can create your MP3s in the following manner so Spreaker won’t convert your file a second time:

  1. Properties/Preferences > Import Settings > Custom (same as above)
  2. Stereo Bit Rate: 128 kbps
  3. Sample Rate: 44.100 kHz
  4. Channels: Stereo
  5. Stereo Mode: Normal
  6. Pay attention to this last step: iTunes will warn you that the “settings are different from the recommended settings. Would you like to change to the recommended settings?” CLICK “DON’T CHANGE”

spreaker settings for mp3 files

If you click “Change”, as I have a million times because I don’t read the warning box correctly, then it will create a Stereo > Joint Stereo file. Then Spreaker will convert your MP3 one more time – which may degrade the audio one more time (and we don’t want that).

I hope this helped you. Please send it on to a friend!

How to Embed a SoundCloud Player on any Website

Despite all SoundCloud’s problems, they really do have the most attractive, engaging media player out today.

I mean, REALLY! WOW!


If you have a show that features other people, such as a guest interview, then offering them the chance to put a SoundCloud player on their site is a win-win-win:

  • You win because it helps bring your show more exposure through your guest’s audience/fans
  • It’s a win for the audience because they get to hear an interview without having to click away from your guest’s website, Facebook or Twitter
  • It’s a win for the guest because they get to offer new content that features themselves with very little involvement on their part (and keeps their audience on their site longer too!)

The best part?

Nobody needs to have a SoundCloud account other than you.


How to share a SoundCloud player on your website,

How to copy a SoundCloud player on your website, copy paste


Want to make the Play button match your theme? Click the “More Options” triangle to change colors or have the episode play automatically.

Blue is bold but orange matches Ryan Rhoten’s brand better.



You could go as far as to click the “WordPress code” to turn the iframe html into a [shortcode] that can be pasted into a WordPress page or post.

example of soundcloud iframe code vs wordpress shortcode

Using a shortcode could reduce confusion for a less-than-experienced guest who has never put anything other than pictures and text on their blog.

Shortcodes can be included in both the Text and Visual writing modes of a WordPress post or page.



Want to quickly share a clickable player to your social media channels?

Instead of clicking the “Embed” tab (see image above), just click on the social channel icon of your choice.

Soundcloud share options facebook

A pop-up window will open and give you more options to choose from.

Here is what it looks like on Twitter (yes, the play button is REAL!)

soundcloud player on Twitter

That’s it, really.

Visit and try sharing some podcasts on your social media channels.



Learn how to record a podcast using audacity with steve stewart

I’ve been using Audacity to record audio for almost 15 years. Learn how to record, edit, and export your recordings using Audacity – a free editing program from PCs, Macs and even Linux.

Visit to find out more!

How To Update the © Copyright Symbol in libsyn

It’s a new year, so we need to update the copyright symbol in libsyn and other online accounts.

How to find the © on your keyboard

Actually, the © isn’t on a traditional keyboard. Here is how you can create the © symbol on your computer:

If you are lazy like me:

Or just take a shortcut by copying it from here:  ©

If you are using a Mac:

Option – G

Using a Windows machine:

If you have a numeric keyboard then hold down the ALT key while typing 0169

No numeric keyboard? You may need to get the owner’s manual out. Just kidding. To open up the Character Map Utility on a Windows machine select Programs » Accessories » System Tools » Character Map. 


How to change the copyright date in Libsyn:

Step 1: Log into and click on settings

Click the gears located under the Settings tab in the toolbar and select “Edit Show Settings”

Change copyright date in Libsyn 4 - Step 1

Step 2: Change your copyright information

Scroll down to the “Copyright Notice” box

NOTE: Yes, I know this image is old.

Step 3: Click “Save”

That’s it. You’re done.

If you found this helpful would you mind sharing it with your Twitter followers?

Now There Are 5 Podcast Monetization Models

I just returned from my local Podcast MeetUp Group and we talked about various podcast monetization models. During the discussion, a new member pitched his idea for a new show and it brought a new form of monetization to light. Read on for more


Here are the 5 Monetization Models for podcasters.

1. Ads / Sponsors

Voicing ad spots on a podcast didn’t make sense 5 years ago. Why? There weren’t many services or products that would benefit from a show that had no geographical boundaries.

For example: A local spa in Kansas City probably won’t attract listeners from California or Florida.

Nowadays, there are more online services with digital products who could benefit from getting in front of your audience. Pitching ads for them on your podcast is more feasible today.

There are two ways to get paid for placing ads in your show:

CPM (Cost per mile) – This is the podcast monetization model made famous by John Lee Dumas. He could guarantee a minimum amount of downloads per episode and the sponsor would pay per thousand downloads.

Flat rate – The sponsor pays you a flat rate. For you, the podcaster, it makes sense to quote them a certain number of episodes. If you post a new show every Wednesday then offer them the Baker’s Dozen (13 episodes). This is the same as 3 months worth of shows – BUT YOU DON’T WANT TO COMMUNICATE IN TIME.

Podcasts are perpetual advertising opportunities – something no other advertising medium offers. The ads live on forever. Someone who finds your show in 2 years will hear the ad from last week’s episode as if it were new.

So don’t talk about a 3-month sponsorship or you’ll confuse a potential sponsor who is familiar with throwing money away on radio ads or local flyers that get tossed into the recycle bin after all the coupons have been clipped.

2. Your Products / Services (bonus content)

This is the model I followed with the MoneyPlan SOS podcast. My show was a greeting card to let my listeners get to know me before calling me for one-on-one financial coaching.

Do you have a product or digital course to sell? Talk about it in your show. This is one way to advertise without selling out.

Ways to make money with a podcast

3. Affiliates

I also used this monetization model in my podcast. MoneyPlan SOS was a podcast about personal finances, so it made sense for me to offer my audience a 10% discount to purchase You Need A Budget – and I receive an affiliate commission.

While selling your own services or products will make you more money, affiliate sales are a nice passive way to monetize your podcast.

4. Donations

The donation model has been around for years thanks to PayPal. However, Patreon came on the scene over a year ago and makes the “podcasting tip jar” a bit more attractive for those who want to support your show.

Here’s now it works: You offer bonus content or do interesting things for people who donate a certain amount of money each month. You can tier the awards and Patreon helps manage it all for you. They also allow the patron to donate per episode but also cap the total amount per month (so you don’t bust their budget).

Listen to Dave Jackson’s School Of Podcasting Episode 399 for more about Patreon

5. Charge guests to appear on your show

What? You can’t be serious. Actually, it is for a very small segment of the podosphere.

A young man attending my MeetUp told us his idea: Interview MBA alumni from the college where he works and charge the guest to appear on the show.

I know, it sounds kinda scummy at first, but after talking it through we realized this podcast monetization model would work in his situation: They have an established fan base, college buddies want to hear about what their old frat brothers/sisters are up to, and it gives the alumni bragging rights.

Admit it – you still wear the sweatshirt with your alma mater and get invitations to the annual reunion. Why wouldn’t you tune in to hear about ‘ol Johnny Perkins who became a doctor. You’d want to go on the show to blow your horn too.

The most important thing to consider about monetizing your show is to find a way that brings value to your audience. Pitching your Bluehost affiliate on a podcast about nutrition probably won’t go over very well. I’m struggling with this myself – trying to include the right kinds of ads in my new show without going too far off the mark.

What do you think? Are there other ways to monetize a podcast?

LAME Encoder vs Fraunhofer: Is There a Difference?

Podcasters and musicians know there is a difference between the LAME Encoder utilized by Audacity’s recording software and the Fraunhofer codec used by iTunes.

When listening to spoken word recordings, such as a podcast episode, does the audience know the difference?

Most will not. After all, they are listening in a noisy car or through tiny earbuds while jogging.

While superior audio quality isn’t necessary for podcasts, there is one step I recommend you take that could improve the overall quality of your production:

Convert your files to MP3 using iTunes on your computer.


Audacity’s LAME Encoder (LAME is a real name)

I’m a HUGE fan of Audacity. I even created a course to help frustrated podcasters learn how to use Audacity more efficiently with Tips and Tricks I’ve used for almost 15 years.

Audacity requires the use of a 3rd party option called the LAME Encoder. Once installed, you are able to export your Audacity project as an MP3
Audacity MP3 converter SettingsHowever, Audacity makes LOUSY sounding MP3 files for podcasters. Maybe I am an audio snob but there are some shows where you can tell the sound is a little “off”.


Fraunhofer: A Superior Codec

Fraunhofer IIS practically invented the MP3 standard that we use every single day – whether as a podcast produce or a listener.

How do you get the Fraunhofer converter? Simply install iTunes on your PC or use it on your Mac. iTunes is a free program for PC or Mac – and it comes with the Fraunhofer codec built in!

I have used iTunes to convert recordings from CDs and old vinyl for many years and found the sound quality to be superior to Audacity and Windows Media Player.


How to use iTunes to make an MP3

These first few steps demonstrate how to set your preferences inside iTunes. Once completed, the settings are saved and will be used every time going forward.

Note: The screenshots below are for Mac users

Set Your Import Settings in iTunes:

First, click on Preferences (PC users will find this under the Edit menu / Mac users find it under iTunes in the menu bar).

Next, click on Import Settings

04 iTunes Settings (import or convert file)

From here you can set the file type (ie: MP3) and overall quality of your conversion (Good Quality 128 kbps).

05 Change iTunes import-convert settings

Most podcasters like yourself will choose between 128kbps to 192kbps mono or joint stereo.

07 Choose iTunes import-convert bitrate

You could dive deeper into the settings by selecting Custom and changing the bit rate, sample rate, channels, etc.

Below are my settings: 

08 Choose convert settingsI used to convert to 192kbps mono but found little difference in using 128kbps mono – except the file size was 30% smaller!


How to Convert Your Podcast Recording in iTunes:

I export my Audacity project as a WAV file and keep an original copy – just in case.

Then I drag the WAV file into iTunes. Don’t worry if it shows up as a music file – you aren’t keeping it in iTunes for long.

03 iTunes library (music)

Simply right-click the file and select “Create MP3 Version”.

09 Right-click Create MP3 Version...

A copy will be made in an MP3 format.

10 Creates MP3 version

From there you can Right-click > Get Info to tag the file title, add artwork, etc.

Voila! You have a file ready to upload to your media server (I use libsyn).


Test the difference for yourself

If you want to hear the difference, if any, follow these steps:

  1. Find a WAV recording on your computer (or create one to test)
  2. Open the WAV file in Audacity, then export it as an MP3
  3. Take the same WAV file and drag it into iTunes (the desktop program on your computer)
  4. Export the WAV in iTunes as MP3 (Edit > Preferences > General Tab – Import Settings button > Import Using: MP3 Encoder, Settings: Good Quality (128 kbps) > OK button)
Finally, put in a set of earbuds and listen to the two MP3s back-to-back. Let me know if you hear a difference.



If you found this tutorial helpful then check out The Audacity Workshop.

The first 10 videos for free at

Once you finish adjusting the Import Settings then simply right-click the file in your iTunes Library and click "Create MP3 Version" in the drop-down menu.Sign up today and receive invitations to exclusive webinars with podcast industry experts.

Previous webinars featured:

  • Daniel J Lewis from The Audacity To Podcast
  • Dave Jackson from the School of Podcasting
  • Hani Mourra, creator of Simple Podcast Press media player
  • Craig Carpenter from
  • Jeff Brown from Read To Lead Podcast
  • and MORE!

Click here to find out more

How To QUICKLY Schedule A Google Hangout On Air

It’s quick and easy to schedule a Google Hangout On Air for a future broadcast.

Whether you are scheduling a webinar or announcing a live web performance of your podcast, you can be ready to go in minutes.

This 2:39 video shows you how

How To QUICKLY Schedule A Google Hangout On Air

  1. Sign in to your Google account
  2. Go to your Google+ page
  3. Click on HOME to drop down the Menu Bar
  4. Select Hangouts
  5. Click on “Hangouts On Air”, then “Create A Hangout On Air”
  6. Fill out the Name and Description
  7. Select “Now” or “Later’. Later will allow you to schedule the start time and duration for your Hangout
  8. Select your Audience in Google+ communities
  9. Click on the “Share” button

Bonus footage:

I also go into some other features that will allow you to post a welcome video, share on other social channels, and even embed the Hangout On Air window on your website.

3 Ways to Get iTunes Reviews From Multiple Countries

A couple years ago we were required to sign out of iTunes and log in to each individual country’s iTunes store to see reviews from other countries.

Today there are three reliable services we can use: One subscription, one comes with purchase, and the third is a free WordPress plugin.

Plugins to get iTunes Reviews

Monthly Subscription

I’m a big fan of Daniel J. Lewis from The Audacity To Podcast. He created a service that offers multiple membership levels:

  • Free: One monthly update for one podcast via email (iTunes reviews only)
  • $5 a month: Weekly updates for two shows including Stitcher reviews
  • $15 a month: Daily/weekly updates for seven shows (Stitcher too)
  • $25 a month: Daily/weekly updates for fifteen shows – and Daniel will shine your shoes at Podcast Movement (Ok, the shoe thing was a joke)

Another benefit to his paid plans is the sorting and filtering features. Very cool.

Find more information, including a walk-through video, at

Feature with Purchase

I’ve been using Simple Podcast Press on for a few months now. What I thought was a very simple podcast player with cool subscribe buttons turned out to be so much more!

Included in the package is a display on your dashboard for all iTunes reviews. I don’t remember setting it up – one day it was just there!

The Simple Podcast Press plugin for WordPress is a one time fee of $47. If you use my affiliate link then I’ll teach you how to hack some of the subscribe buttons to become a call-to-action like newsletter signups.

Free for WordPress

I just discovered this one: iTunes Podcast Review Manager plugin for WordPress. I just installed it on one of my sites and it seems to work as promised. Time will only tell but they are on version 2.1 so I expect they have some history behind it.

You can download this plugin from or just search for it from your plugin dashboard.


Do reviews matter?

iTunes ratingsI will be the first to admit: 5-star reviews stroke my ego. Most podcasters like myself are so starved for feedback that a written review puts us on Cloud 9.

However, here are reasons you want to check podcast reviews from multiple countries:

  • To say thanks for the review on your show (everyone likes to be thanked)
  • Social Proof (it lets others know you have listeners other than them)
  • More Social Proof by posting reviews on your site (like testimonies)
  • Use the helpful criticism to improve your show (just don’t let them bully you into changing)
  • To remind you there are listeners in other countries (don’t assume Croatians know what Black Friday is)

And, of course, it gives you something to brag about to your other podcasting friends.

I wouldn’t recommend you fixate on reviews. They do help your show rank higher in iTunes but serving your audience should come first. Give your listeners what they want (value) and they will eventually give you what you want (5-star reviews)

How To Schedule A Live Podcast Using Hangouts On Air (#HOA)

Whether preparing to do a webinar or announcing a live performance of your podcast over the internet, you can be ready to go in minutes using Google's free video streaming service, Hangouts On Air. This video will show you in 90 seconds how to schedule a live podcast using Hangouts On Air.

At the <01:49> mark, I go into some other features that will allow you to post a welcome video, share on other social channels, and even embed the Hangout On Air window on your website.

It's quick and easy to schedule a Google Hangout On Air for a future broadcast:

  1. Sign in to your Google account
  2. Go to your Google+ page
  3. Click on HOME to drop down the Menu Bar
  4. Select Hangouts
  5. Click on “Hangouts On Air”, then “Create A Hangout On Air”
  6. Fill out the Name and Description
  7. Select “Now” or “Later’. Later will allow you to schedule the start time and duration for your Hangout
  8. Select your Audience in Google+ communities
  9. Click on the “Share” button

This is what a scheduled Hangout On Air looks like on Google+:

Schedule a Google Hangout On Air (short video)

Interested in watching? Sign up to receive updates on all my finance-based webinars here

Tag MP3s faster with ID3 Editor by PA-software

This one trick helped me shave seconds off of my podcasting workflow by tagging MP3s faster with ID3 Editor. Yes, SECONDS!

ID3 Editor remembers your past entries for many of the most commonly repeated fields such as Artist, Year, Copyright and Composer.

Here is my process for for entering ID3 tags:

  1. Open the file with ID3 Editor by Pa-Software
  2. Enter the title of the episode in the Title field
  3. Click on the small triangle below the Artist Field
  4. Select the suggested Artist from the drop-down options

Repeat this for all fields that contain the triangle below the entry boxes

Tag MP3 files with ID3 editor



11 Ideas For Building Community From Your Podcast

Everyone wants to feel like they belong to something. Joining fan clubs, church groups, and even recovery organizations are ways people satisfy that desire. In world where people are more connected on Facebook than to their next door neighbors, building community from your podcast has become more important than ever to reach a new audience and turn existing listeners into ambassadors for your show.

Here are 11 Ideas For Building Community From Your Podcast

Social Networking ideas

1) Facebook Group – Groups have taken the place of Facebook Pages for interacting with fans. While you don’t have as much control in a Group as you do a Page, members feel like they are part of the community because they can post, invite their friends, and the activity is more likely to show up in their timeline. If you haven’t started a Facebook Group for your podcast then this is an easy step towards interacting with your most passionate listeners.

2) Unique #Hashtag – Twitter, Instagram and Facebook all utilize this feature. Using a unique hashtag helps identify the few individuals in your sea of followers who are truly listening. Ask them to share your #Hashtag on social media and start a dialogue with them.

3) TweetChats – This is a great way to get your listeners to show up and interact. Encourage them to join you on a certain date and time by using your unique #hashtag so everyone can follow the conversation. Services like make this easy to do and posting some of the responses on your website (or talking about them in your next episode) are sure-fire ways to make people feel special and that they belong to the community.

Membership ideas

4) Members only site – Similar to a Facebook Group, starting a members-only site gives your audience a place to hang out. They get a private place to chat with each other and brings them back to your site for additional content, information, and community.

5) Forum – This ain’t no FAQ board! People love to dig into the forums and answer questions on behalf of the site owner (admit it, you’ve done this too!)

6) Smartphone app – Mobile phone usage is on the rise. As prices for app design drops you will see more and more podcasters creating an app for their “inner circle”.

Event ideas

7) Local MeetUps – Start a MeetUp group in your town ( or schedule one when traveling to other cities or attending a conference. There is nothing better than getting together with fans at a local bar or restaurant.

Ideas For Building Community

8) Conferences and events – Why not create your own conference or event? Having a “season finale” party for your tv show themed podcast gives die-hard fans a reason to come see you and join the community.

9) Launch a cruise – This idea will absolutely take your community to the next level. Cliff Ravenscraft organized the Community Dream Cruise in 2013 and John Lee Dumas will embark with a few dozen members of his Podcasters’ Paradise community in November 2015.

Branding Ideas

10) Chachkies and Memorabilia – Customized t-shirts are much cheaper than a Caribbean cruise and easy to give away. Pat Flynn sends a t-shirt to everyone who submits a question that he uses on his Ask Pat podcast. Some other items you can customize that your community would love are:

  • Hats
  • Stickers
  • Drink koozies or beer steins
  • Screen savers

Don’t discount this idea. People will pay good money to wear their favorite motorcycle or hard liquor logo on their chest – and it makes them feel like part of the community. I dare you to try this (I did).

11) Pet name – Nothing says “community” better than branding your listeners with a group pet name. Seth Godin tells us to rally our tribe, which Jeff Goins took to heart with Tribe-Writers. John Lee Dumas takes it to the extreme by addressing his listeners as members of “Fire Nation”. I noticed an immediate change when I began addressing my audience as Debt Freedom Fighters – both in the way I felt about them and in ways my listeners were interacting with me. (Maybe I should make a t-shirt for that!)

Building a podcast community lets listeners feel like they belong to something special. It helps you grow more intimate with your audience, gives them something to talk about with others (and promote your show to outsiders), and will keep them subscribed to your show.

I would love to hear how you implemented the ideas above as you build your podcast community.