Updated June 6, 2022
Apple recently announced one million podcasts. Many go to the Apple podcast directory and search by scrolling through thumbnail images or even type in a search term.
If you want to increase downloads and not spend money on advertising, you should optimize your presence so you can be found both by Google and Apple with images and text.
Let’s take a quick look at five ways you can optimize Apple to increase downloads:
- Cover art must be consistent
- Wrong category
- Ratings & reviews
- Description not optimized
Mistake #1 Cover art must connect to show notes page
The art work — harder than it looks
Producing cover art for Apple is a tough job. On the one hand, you need to produce a high quality image that is at lease 1400 x 1400 up to 3000 x 3000 with resolution of 72 dpi. It must look good on a desktop.
However, statistics show most podcasters listen with a smartphone. Because of that, your cover image must be easy to read on a small screen, which is more like 100 x 100.
This means you may have to shrink the artwork down to 100 x 100, and make sure it looks good on Apple.
If you design an image to look good on a desktop, you are ignoring the way people search for podcasts.
Please don’t fall into the trap that you are a qualified graphic artist. Chances are you will make a mistake on this primary piece of information about your podcast.
Your best bet is to use design services like 99 Designs or even Fiverr. They can produce artwork that can be quite good. Look for people experienced in podcast image design.
Make a connection
Do not make the mistake of linking to your company home page. Do not send prospects to your LinkedIn page. Send them to your show notes page. The show notes page gives you the stage to tell your story on a larger scale. You can include quotes, images, internal links, a wide variety of methods to convince a potential listener to subscribe to your podcast.
When you hit the “website” button on Apple iTunes, it must go to the show notes page with a very similar graphical design.
Mistake #2: Wrong Category Selection
The typical podcast listener regular subscribes to six podcasts. They lose interest and are always seeking out new material. Frequently, they may scroll through a category that they enjoy. Apple offers 19 separate categories, please don’t put your technology podcast in the sports section.
Mistake #3 Forgetting about the Other Title
At Apple, we have a tale of two titles.
We all know the name of your podcast, for the purposes of this discussion, Constellations.
The title I am referring to is not the name of the podcast, but the title that Apple will use to identify it for searchers. It may be called the subtitle. Think of mobile users, the title must be shorter than 60 characters, that short title will make it easy for mobile viewers, but do not forget the Apple search algorithm – include a keyword in title.
For example, the name of the podcast, and some keywords were included in the title shown below.
Mistake #4 No Ratings & Reviews
Most marketing professionals will say that Apple’s ranking algorithm looks at the number of new subscribers, the number of downloads, and then the number of new comments to determine how it will rank it. Reviews may give someone if they want to listen to your podcast. A person may look to see if anybody else has liked the podcast before they invest their time.
Make sure you have good reviews, but don’t fool yourself to think it will impact your ability to be found. Apple released Ratings & Reviews, marketing folks viewed as part of the algorithm. People thought if your podcast has more ratings and reviews than your competitor, than you would get placed higher in the search returns. Unfortunately, research has not borne this theory out.
Mistake #5 Description not optimized
This is your chance to include main keywords as well as variations on them, commonly called long-tail keywords. Use all the 4,000 characters you have. Best practice is to reinforce the main keywords and from there, sprinkle in some longer phrases that are related.
These are commonly called long-tail keywords. If you look at Constellations, the description includes the name of the podcast (Constellations) some main keywords (New Space and Satellite) as well as long term keywords (High Throughput Satellites)
Everybody knows a picture tells a story, select a good one. You cannot find bread if you are in the detergent aisle, choose the right category. There is the title to your podcast and then there is the title to your presence on Apple iTunes, a distinction with a difference.
You must write about 250 words for a description that is easy to read and includes keywords so you can be found.You may think these suggestions are merely common sense. You can spend 15 minutes trolling through podcasts at Apple and will see large companies who have not given even a moment’s thought to how to present themselves. Do not make that mistake.
Why bother spending a dime on advertising if you do not have the basics down. This starts with a written digital strategy, a strong show notes page, and a thoughtful presence on Apple.
Take an hour and optimize your presence on Apple iTunes.
If you liked this article, you may want to read “How to Become a Guest on a Podcast”
Has been in front of a microphone since 1991. He can help you structure, launch, and promote your company podcast. firstname.lastname@example.org
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