Everyone with a podcast wants more downloads. How can your podcast be discovered? Start with the behavior of listeners. From Patagonia to Portland everybody uses Google. Internet Live Stats estimates about 63,000 search queries per second. One differentiator is to have a successful show notes page.
The logical conclusion would be to create a show notes page that is easily found by Google searchers. Once a prospective listener is on your site, you can describe the podcast and demonstrate you have the goods that will satisfy their itch.
The best tool for promotion is not to spend $1,000 on a microphone or $25,000 for a freelance audio engineer from NPR, but to strategically design a show notes page that showcases the value you can bring to the searcher.
To my mind, there are nine parts of a show notes page that will make it attractive to both the human eye as well as the search engine.
These elements range from mirroring the images found on Apple Podcasts to having a call to action. Let’s begin with the upper left corner.
People like consistency.
Please remember there is a link on iTunes to your show notes page. Mirror the image from iTunes on your show notes page for visual consistency. If someone decides to click on your show notes page, there will be no jolts and no surprises. Someone stumbles on your podcast and wants to learn more, make it easy on them.
Fulfill their wishes.
Everybody scans to see if your podcast brings value before wasting their time. During this scanning process, they decide how much time they want to spend with your visual, written, or audio content.
Let’s assume they found your podcast on Apple iTunes and clicked on the “website” button or found your topic on a Google search.
Here is an estimate of the time commitment:
|Glance – Read the headline|
|42 seconds – Read the 200-word summary|
|14 minutes – Read the 4000-word transcript|
|25 minutes – Listen to the podcast|
You need to structure the presentation of the podcast to respond to the perceived amount of time a visitor has.
Samples work at Costco and they work with podcasts as well. Short text snippets like 200-word summaries can provide a further inducement to listeners.
Once they hit the play button, dazzle the listener with content so compelling they subscribe. From there, the goal is to get the listener’s email as a vehicle to gain a deeper understanding of the wants and needs of the audience so you can serve them better.
The next element in a successful show notes page is having the right image. Humans just want to know another human is on the interview. Many podcasts have regular moderators, you should include a photo of the moderator in the show notes section – but not as a focal point. It is more of a technical description.
If you have a podcast and are not satisfied with your number of downloads, you may want to attend the free, live 45 minute webinar How to Promote a Podcast
The hero of the podcast is the guest. Real, unposed photos of a guest in front of a microphone are a great way to reinforce the presence of the person who appeared on your podcast.
If you must, reluctantly accept a garden variety publicity photo from the guest.
At this stage in the listener’s journey, the visitor may want to listen to the podcast. Don’t put any obstacles on the path of the prospective listener. One button to listen. No clicking around. Press one arrow and off they go.
Binge listening is happening every day – why not give your followers a chance to enjoy the full orb experience.
5. Internal links
If people like your podcast, they may want more. Give them an opportunity with links to other episodes or articles on your web site.
Everybody loves a top ten list — here is my Top Ten Shows for 2019 on Federal TechTalk. What is curious is the most popular show is from 2017!
6. Summary box
Today’s readers get lost with long lengths of text. Keep the summary to 300 words. Add bullets, images, graphs, boxes, or something that is not text. One fantastic idea is to put important details in a summary box. You may want to include the episode number, minutes, name of the guest, topic, and other quick details.
Anecdotal evidence and studies of millions of Tweets confirm the fact that people love quotes. Why ignore these lessons? Include a quote or two on the show notes page. Most show notes pages are based on blog templates and they always have ways to select quotes. “Click to Tweet” is a good way to use quotes on the show notes page as well.
If you want to get creative, try making audiograms. An audiogram is a short-form video that includes a photo and short audio clip from the interview. Test it to see if it works. You can create these easily with Wavve. It is a whopping $10 per month.
8. Call to action
You have captured the attention of a reader with a compelling summary, good images, crystal clear audio, quotes and maybe even a “box score” to make the podcast easy to categorize. You have earned the right to notch up the interaction.
Give the listener the option of deepening the relationship. Include a call to action that brings value to the listener. In an ideal world, you will have an offer that fits directly with the individual podcast.
Let’s say your target audience is civil engineers. If your podcast talks about ready mixed concrete, you may want to offer a summary sheet of water-reducing, set controlling admixtures for concrete.
Here is an example of a content upgrade for the article you are reading now:
Don’t sleep on the power of a transcript. Let’s do some rough numbers. A 25-minute interview may include 4000 words. Chock full of terms that a search engine can use to find the podcast. Use the transcript for quotes as well.
Breaking news: some people prefer reading to listening. A transcript serves the needs of that audience.
If you post your podcast on iTunes and cross your fingers you will become frustrated. Have a balanced marketing matrix for podcast promotion.
One key aspect of that approach is to have a show notes pages that will allow people to discover your podcast.
The show notes page should include the same logo as the one that describes it on iTunes. Make sure the person who finds the show notes page has images and text that describe the podcast.
Quotes are always winners. Transcripts contain keywords that people use in a search. All this work has earned you the right to ask for an email in exchange for a valuable offer.
Go forth and podcast.
If you liked this article, you may enjoy reading, “Do you make these five mistakes with Apple Podcasts? ”
Here is a free guide if you would like to improve your show notes page. Remember: Google started indexing and ranking podcasts in 2019.