Promoting your podcast through show notes is really an indirect way to drive traffic to your show. When you read about podcast promotion, often people are suggesting more direct ways to promote your podcast. However, show notes are the way that search engines can drive traffic to your content. Search engines are not able to search the audio and video of your podcast-at least not yet. It is important to provide detailed show notes so that people can search the web and find your content.
What Are Show Notes?
Show notes are blog posts that are written that are connected to the individual podcast episodes. These are, usually, brief descriptions of what you talk about in that episode of the podcast. Show notes can also be much more elaborate with full transcripts of your program. Full transcripts are certainly not necessary, but the more information you can include in your show notes, the more search engines will be able to direct traffic to your individual episodes.
If there is enough information about the episode in the show notes, it may convince the reader that they need to at least listen to this one show. Over time you will gain many listeners who find your show through your show notes.
What Should Be Included With Show Notes?
Show notes should include at least a basic outline of the topics discussed in the epsiode. Any links that were covered in the show should also be included. This is a help to your current audience who look for links after they have listened to the show. While listening they may not be in a place to write down all the information you cover. If your listeners know they can go to your podcast website and get any links they need at a later time, they will be more interested in spending time at the site. It helps new site visitors to become interested in your show by knowing exactly what is covered in a particular episode.
Show notes also need to be complete enough for you to find a topic when searching for it using your site's own search program.
Show notes can be written as a paragraph formatted summary of the episode, or in outline form. Outlines make it easy to provide external links-usually one per line. This is visually easier on the reader. However, outlines typically do not draw as much search engine traffic if they are not written with enough complete sentences to draw in various potential search terms.
When considering how much to include in your show notes and what format to use, you should think about how the information will be presented in search engine results. There should be enough information to compel the potential listener to visit your site. From there your full show notes should convince the visitor to listen to, or watch your show.
It is helpful to new visitors to your site to see how long the episode they are considering listening to is. Some visitors may be interested in checking out one episode without this knowledge. However active podcast listeners want to see if your average show is 10 minutes or 2 hours. It will be a help to know if they can afford the time to add your show to their available listening time. Many podcasting plugins for WordPress and other blogging platforms have the option to show the show length.
Show Notes Title
The title of your show notes should match the title of your episode. This allows current listeners to know that they are viewing the correct set of show notes for the episode they are listening to. It will also help new listeners to quickly scan your show notes and then download just the episodes they are interested in when seeing the show title in iTunes or other podcast directories.
Make Show Notes Easy To Find
If you are using your show notes to promote your podcast, you need to make your show notes appear towards the top of search engine results. If you are talking about a popular subject in your current episode, don't hesitate to put that into your show notes. The more popular 'keywords' you can honestly include in your show notes, the more likely your show will appear in the results. Keywords are simply the words or phrases people would use to find your content.
There is a lot of talk about keywords and SEO (Search Engine Optimization) when it comes to promoting anything online. The more about these things you can learn, the better your podcast promotion efforts through show notes will be. However, if you will focus on writing your show notes in a natural way, using important words that people are interested in, you will probably do just fine in driving traffic to your content.
Promote Your Show Notes
When you promote individual episodes of your podcast through forums, Facebook, Twitter and bookmarks, you are actually promoting your show notes. The blog post that contains the show notes is what you are promoting. As far as the search engines are concerned, you are not actually advertising the audio or video file connected with the blog post, but the text of the blog post is what is important to them. Without getting too deep into SEO, just know that the more links you can have on the Internet that point to your individual show notes (and therefore your podcast website as a whole) the higher up on the search engines your show notes will appear when someone does a web search. By posting links around the web (without spamming) to your show notes, you are creating miore potential visitors through search engine traffic.
The Effect Of Show Notes
Podcast promotion through show notes is not something that will drive droves of listeners. But, if someone is searching on a topic that you covered in an episode then they are focused readers and potential consumers of your show. Even better would be if people were searching for information that you cover in your podcast on a regular basis. They are now not only focused consumers of a small bit of information you covered, but they are looking specifically for your show.
Writing detailed and informative show notes is a great part of an overall podcast promotion plan. Remember, people can't search video and audio like they can text. The text within your show notes is what will drive web surfers to your podcast. Don't neglect writing show notes.