Best Practice podcast promotion and discovery
There are a few innate truths in podcasting. Firstly, content creation is time-consuming and expensive. Secondly, podcast promotion is time consuming, complex and expensive. Everyone wants their podcast to reach the biggest audience possible, we want to create more audience engagement and we want to be found when someone is looking to listen to something. But it is easier said than done.
To maximise podcast engagement and grow your audience you need to promote to your audience / target audience regularly. Also, you need to ensure that all your audio assets can easily be “found” when people search.
A cadence in promotion, and creating “web crawlable” audio content (i.e., being found) are the fundamental building blocks for podcast promotion and discovery.
What qualifies us?
We also learned the hard way, that promoting a podcast is time consuming, complex, laborious but a vital step in ensuring that your audience experiences the content. We wanted something more streamlined, something easier that would “give us back our Sundays” — so we built it.
Best-practice podcast discovery
It’s estimated that Google received over 5 Billion search requests a day. Your largest potential audience is here, however, podcasts can be completely ignored unless you have a best practice approach.
When you write a blog or any written content, provided your website is indexable, your site gets crawled by search engines such as Google, and your content gets indexed. If you are talking about “..annual turtle migrations to Switzerland”, then should someone happen to search on that term / phrase, there is a great chance your website will be displayed in the search results.
However, if you talk about the “..annual turtle migrations to Switzerland” in your video or podcast, those words remain un-crawled, locked up in that file, and hidden from search engines. Your content isn’t going to appear in Google Search results and your going to miss a huge potential audience.
So how do you solve this?
1. Transcription — turn your voices into text. This is the starting point, having the written word which can be used on your website to be crawled, extract keywords, topics, tags that can be used in publication platforms that help your podcast be found.
2. Keywords and phrases — these are very important. What is being discussed in the podcast helps you be found. If you are talking about the turtles, as above, key phrases / tags could actually be: “turtle migration”, “Swiss animals”, “native animals of Europe” even “animal migration patterns”. Anyone looking at these terms, could be directed to your podcast and this is the kind of audience acquisition, from outside your traditional podcast audience eco-system, which really helps you grow your podcast.
3. Blogs — turning your podcast into a blog certainly helps with discoverability because the content can be crawled by the search engine once it is on your website. If you have a transcript, you are more than halfway there. Rewrite it into a long format piece taking quotes from your guest and using them to dive deeper into topics. Take sections of your podcast and build original written content from the topics and themes you explore.
4. SEO — Follow a best practice guide to ensure the structure, meta tags, headlines and keyword density are followed correctly in your written content.
Because we wanted to be able to solve these problems, the Sonnant platform delivers transcriptions, keywords and subjects and content for SEO. Our team has already created automated summary blog posts, and long-form posts will be coming soon. We are well on the way to making best practice discovery as simple as uploading your audio and video file.
Best-practice podcast promotion
Best practice podcast promotion is a commitment, not a campaign. You need to create a cadence with creating great posts and posting regularly. Importantly, to get engagement you want to align your content with your audience and find them on the platforms that they are most likely to engage.
They say, “content is king”, but “distribution is the whole kingdom”. Problem being that distribution takes time, energy and effort and, sometimes, it’s hard to tangible see the rewards.
So how do you solve this?
1. Snippets and clips — having short sharp clips and snippets of your content is a great way to engage your audience. If you have the text that goes with the clip, it enhances discoverability. You want to publish once or twice a week something new from a podcast episode to engage and entice.
2. Captions — Having captions on your clips is essential in promotions. Now, the user may choose to turn captions on / off, but that depends on the platform. What can be underestimated is the default volume settings on most platforms which is now set to off. If your post does make it into someone’s feed, and the volume is off, and they can’t hear what is being said, the chances of engagement are very low. Put in captions, and you can capture the audience’s attention immediately prompting them to turn the audio on and engage.
3. Hashtags — Alignment of content with context is extremely important. If you are talking about turtles, you are more likely to engage with animal lovers in animal forums, than posting about turtles in a quantum mechanics thread. Understanding what is being spoken about is important for targeting and promoting and advertising.
4. Quotes, comedy and chapters — engagement is all about the quality of content, and great quotes, funny moments and engaging segments are always great to lead with. Have you ever seen a boring movie trailer and gone and seen the movie? It happens but is unlikely. Lead your promotions with some gold and the audience will form a line.
Some other notable mentions:
- Leverage your guest's audience
- Ensure that your podcast is published on as many platforms as possible — including YouTube
- Ensure that you are always asking for reviews
- Guest star on other podcasts
- Ensure your podcast titles are descriptions are keywords people will search for
If you are thinking of getting started with a Podcast or you feel you are spending too much time promoting it, consider a free trial with Sonnant.