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How to publish your Podcast as an Amazon Alexa Skill?

Did you know you can share your daily tips videos as an Alexa Skill podcast?

It’s pretty simple but you need to setup a few things.

I’ll show you from A-Z how to add your Podcast to an Amazon Alexa Skill so that anyone with an Echo Dot or other Alexa device can find it.

What do you need to publish your Podcast as an Amazon Alexa Skill?

You really just need a few things:

  1. A podcast that you post to at least once a week
  2. A place to host your podcast files so Alexa can find them
  3. An Amazon Developer account
  4. An Alexa Skill that is setup to use your RSS feed

Pretty simple right?

Let’s start with the Amazon setup

First, you’ll want to setup your Amazon developer account.

This is a free account that Amazon requires for your to create an Alexa Skill.

Go to https://developer.amazon.com and click the sign in link on top right.

This will popup a sign in form. If you don’t have an account click the Create your Amazon Developer account button on bottom, otherwise enter your email and password.

Once logged in, go to the Alexa console by clicking the link.

And finally, go to the Alexa Developer console by selecting the menu option on top right.

Creating your Alexa Skill

Once you are in the Alexa Developer Console, you can create your skill by clicking the Create Skill button.

In the next screen, enter your Skill name (#1), select your language (#2 – use the English for your country), click the Flash Briefing box (#3) and then click the Create Skill button (#4).

Enter your Custom Error Message (#1), click Save (#2) and then go to Distribution tab (#3).

Fill in your Public Name (#1), the One Sentence Description (#2) and the Detailed Description (#3).

Scroll down to upload your logo for the podcast and enter the rest of the information such as keywords and privacy policy urls and then click the Save and Continue button.

Answer No to the options, click the Export Compliance box, enter “No special instructions” for testing and click Save and Continue again.

Leave the availability options to public and all countries and click Save and Continue button.

Lastly, this will run the certification but give you an error saying that there are no feeds.

Setting up your Alexa feed

There are lots of providers your can host your feed on.

We will show you how to setup your feed on Click eCourse hosting site using YouTube as the source of your Alexa feed.

First, you’ll need to register a free account on Click eCourse.

Follow registration instructions in this post: Course Income Secrets #214 – How to create your first course on Click eCourse platform?

Setup your account to enable Alexa feeds

Once you’ve registered your free account on Click eCourse, you’ll need to upgrade.

To make an Alexa JSON feed available for your Skill, you’ll need at least the beginner plan.

Click on the Plans link on top of page.

Scroll to the bottom and click on the Select button of the plan you’d like.

Which will take you to the order page where you have the option of a monthly or yearly payment (with 2 month of savings)

I don’t know about you, but I assume I’ll be building my business forever and my podcasts will also be forever, so go with the yearly savings.

Create the Podcast hosting files

The cool thing about hosting your Podcast on Click eCourse is that you can also let people access your videos.

All you need to do is create a course to host the videos and the platform handles the audio and feed bit.

First, create a course by clicking the big green plus button on top right and choosing Course.

Enter an appropriate title, summary and details and click Next.

You can probably skip over the SEO/Hastag, Header code and Categories for now by clicking Next until you get to the Cover image tab or just click on the Cover image tab now.

Click Choose file to upload a cover image for the course/podcast. It should be square and 512×512 is fine.

Click the Done button which will take you to the course main page.

Adding the Podcast episodes

Once you’re created your Course/podcast, you’ll want to add episodes.

I recommend adding them daily as you record them, but if you’ve already got a bunch you already recorded, add them from those urls.

Click Add lesson link (or the + next to Lessons link).

Set First Status to published

In YouTube, go to your Studio and find the video you want to use. Click on the three little dots and then the Get sharable link option.

Take note of the video length, scroll down to enter the YouTube URL in the URI box, the video length in the Length box and enter a date in the Published on box and finally click the Save button.

Don’t worry about the title, summary and details, that will be fetched from YouTube.

The thumbnail and title will be fetched and the process to extract the audio will start.

You can add a new lesson/episode or go the the course to get the RSS feed for Alexa by clicking the Course link on bottom.

If you scroll down, you’ll see you have a lesson in your course.

Click the Feed link to see your Alexa feed URL.

Adding the Feed URL to your Alexa Skill in Amazon

Now, we can go back to Amazon Alexa Developer Console and add that feed.

Click on the Build tab to find your Skill

Then click the Add New feed link

Enter the information, paste your URL in the Feed box and click Add.

Then Click Save

If you get an error such as Course Talk with Jean-Serge Gagnon: uid: 118-1145 warning: Date [2020-10-01T04:00Z] should be no older than 7 days, as Alexa may ignore older items.

You’ll want to either change the publish date on your lessons in Click eCourse or add new lessons with more recent dates.

Next, re-run the Validation by clicking on the Certification tab and then the Run button

After the validation completes successfully, you can submit for review.

However, if you did not fix the date warning, you will get an error.

After fixing it by adding new episodes or fixing the published date, you can re-run the validation.

Click on Submission tab on left column and then Submit for review

Which will take you back to the console with your skill status to In review.

Now you just have to wait for approval.

Conclusion

You can use Click eCourse as a podcast hosting platform because it will extract the audio from your videos for you and allow you to share your course as a feed.

Watch the video as I show you all these steps live adding the Real Talk series as a new Alexa Skill.

Share this with your friends who want to create a podcast from videos.

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