In order to properly add ID3 tags to your audio files, you need to first understand what an ID3 tag is.
When you play a song in iTunes or with your portable player, you have probably noticed the information that displays when the track plays.
- Song Title
- Album Title
- Track Number
- The Artist Name
- Picture of the Album (Album Artwork)
This information will display no matter what the file name is.
This information is called metadata, it is attached to the audio file through ID3 tags.
There are many different types of ID3, with each one offering additional set of tags or ways to contain the information. Older ID3 versions could not hold many characters at all. The newer versions hold much more information in each tag and offer more tags all together.
Now, why are these ID3 tags important for your podcast?
If you just uploaded a file that looked like this —> podcast004.mp3
The listener would never see any of the information such as the name of the episode, podcast name, episode number, cover art, and many other important segments.
Although some of this data will be auto-generated by iTunes you should be doing this manually with each of your episodes to be sure.
You can edit ID3 tags within popular music players such as iTunes, but it does a very poor job. Here is a list of programs you can use to edit ID3 tags on each platform.
ID3 Tagging For Mac:
ID3 Tagging for PC Users:
When you download and open one of these ID3 tag editors you may be overwhelmed at first when trying to add all of the different options available to you. Only a select few are important for podcasting.
Title: This is where you will put your episode number and title (try starting a podcast at episode 000 to give yourself some room to grow).
Track: This is where you will put your episode number once again.
Album: The title of your podcast
Artist: This will be the name of the host
Year: The year of the podcast launch or release
Genre: I always use “Podcast” as the genre
Comment: Under this section type a brief description of the episode. Not necessarily all of the show notes but a concise version.
Copyright: Any copyright information that would be pertinent to the show.
URL: A link back to your shownotes.
Album Art: your podcast cover art. (If you need cover art designed for your show I highly recommend 99 Designs, they have done all of my artwork and it turns out great).
In closing, ID3 tags are extremely important when uploading your podcast episodes for a number of reasons. Make sure that you are taking the time each week to edit these to best match your shows needs.