With over 5 million podcasts in the world, it’s essential that once you start one, you also begin investing in strategies to help your show get discovered.
Building momentum to continue acquiring more ears on your content is critical to helping your podcast climb to the top of the charts and listener preferences.
When it comes to podcast discoverability, some argue there’s a lack of technological development enabling search engines to crawl and index audio, making it difficult to show up in Internet searches. But this is starting to change.
As Google pulls more podcast content into its search engines and websites like YouTube lean into audio, these platforms have some of the best content discovery tools.
In August 2022, YouTube launched a dedicated homepage just for podcasts, and in March 2023, YouTube announced that podcast tools are now available on YouTube Studio, showing the world that podcasts are top of mind for the platform.
And podcast listeners are loving it.
In July 2023, Veritonic released a report revealing that 65% of people who watch a podcast on YouTube are consuming it for the first time and that 54% of listeners like to consume podcasts on YouTube to see the hosts and guests interact.
YouTube is just an example of the larger trend. As time goes on, newsworthy podcast content will begin to surface more regularly on the platforms we all use daily – and you don’t want to miss the boat!
We’ve got just the strategies to help you with discoverability so you can keep growing your podcast audience and invest in the longevity of your show.
Let’s dive into some of the tried and tested methods for boosting your podcast’s discoverability.
1. Create quality content
Engaging and quality content takes time and effort, but it’s worth the investment.
The key reason to focus on producing compelling podcast episodes is their ability to build a loyal fan base.
Your listener’s time is precious, and you as the podcaster should always treat it as such.
Listeners will tune into your show every week (or whatever your show’s cadence is), leave positive reviews, provide feedback, and share it with family and friends which all help in driving podcast discoverability.
Here are some questions to ask yourself when refining your show’s content:
- Who is your target audience?
- What value does your show’s content provide to your target audience?
- What differentiates your show from others within your niche?
- What segments are resonating more with your audience?
- When does your audience drop off? Is there a pattern you see across episodes?
CoHost Tip: If you’re interested in supercharging your podcast content to keep your listeners hooked, we put together 7 essential tips to boost your show’s consumption rate and create content your listeners will love.
2. Transcribe your podcasts
In essence, a podcast transcript is a written record of everything said in an audio podcast. Think of it as a textual version of your audio content. These transcripts capture the spoken words, timestamps, and sometimes even non-verbal cues, providing a comprehensive written record of the podcast episode.
Transcripts have several benefits when it comes to optimizing searchability and discoverability, including:
Transcribing your podcasts makes your content more accessible to a broader audience. Not everyone can listen to audio content, whether due to hearing impairment, language barriers, or situational constraints.
By providing a written transcript alongside your podcast, you ensure that individuals who prefer or require written content can still engage with your material.
Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
Transcripts play a pivotal role in optimizing your podcast for search engines. Search engines crawl text-based content, and providing a transcript equips them with valuable keywords and context to understand the content of your podcast.
Featuring your transcripts on your podcast landing page can significantly improve your podcast's visibility in search engine results, driving organic traffic to your website. By incorporating relevant keywords and phrases into your transcript, you can attract listeners who are actively searching for topics covered in your podcast.
Enabling content repurposing
Transcripts open the door to repurposing your podcast content into various formats. You can transform your podcast episode into a blog article, an e-book, or even a downloadable PDF. This not only allows you to reach different audiences but also provides multiple entry points for users to discover your podcast. Not to mention - content repurposing saves you and your team valuable time and resources.
Building a strong online presence
Transcripts contribute to building a robust online presence for your podcast. When you accompany your podcast episodes with well-formatted and engaging transcripts, you create an archive of high-quality written content.
This, in turn, positions you as an authority in your niche. As users search for information related to your podcast's topics, they may come across your transcripts, enhancing your credibility and encouraging them to explore your podcast.
Accessibility for content creators
Transcribing your podcasts also has benefits for you as a content creator. A written transcript serves as a valuable resource for creating show notes, summaries, and timestamps. It streamlines your content creation process and can be immensely helpful when you want to refer back to specific points made in your podcast.
Additionally, having a transcript can be a foundation for developing future content, as you can build upon the ideas discussed in your episodes.
Harnessing social media
Snippets of intriguing quotes or insights from your podcast, taken from the transcript, can be shared across various social media platforms. Visual content, such as quote cards or short video clips, accompanied by these quotes can grab the attention of users scrolling through their feeds. These snippets act as teasers, enticing users to explore the full podcast episode, thereby driving traffic to your podcast platform.
CoHost Tip: If you’re looking to turn your transcripts into blog posts, social media posts, audiograms, and much more in a matter of minutes rather than hours, check out our article that talks about which AI tools to leverage for each part of your content repurposing strategy.
How to create podcast transcriptions
Luckily, many tools on the market will save you valuable time creating your transcripts. This way, you and your team don’t need to transcribe your episode word-for-word. Simply run your show through one of the platforms below, do a quick read-through, and you’re set to publish.
- CoHost: CoHost leverages AI to create accurate, automatic transcriptions for effortless editing and distribution. You can share these transcriptions across channels to ensure you’re making the most of your podcast content and publish them directly to your CoHost website.
- Trint: Trint uses AI to transcribe your audio content in 31 different languages in seconds. Take advantage of a 7-day free trial to see if Trint is a good fit for your business.
- Descript: Descript offers podcast transcription with 99% accuracy within 24–hours into 22 languages and charges $2 / minute.
3. Prioritize show notes
Show notes typically include:
- Key points
- Main topics discussed
- Guest information
- Relevant links
- CTAs (Call-to-Action)
Show notes inspire new listeners to tune in who might be searching for a podcast on a particular topic – and come across your show notes that contain the content they are looking for.
So to break it down, quality show notes can convert a search in discovery, to a download to potentially a loyal listener. The perfect podcast listener funnel!
They’re also a great way to include details (and shoutouts!) to your special guests, sponsors, or resources you dropped during the episode.
Here are some quick tips we recommend when writing your show notes:
- Strategic keyword placement: Include relevant keywords in titles, headers, and body text for better searchability. Avoid keyword stuffing, which can turn off readers and search engines alike.
- Readable format: Keep the content concise and easy to skim. Format with headers, bullet points, and bold or italicized text for emphasis, making it reader-friendly.
- Optimal length and structure: We suggest aiming for under 700 characters or approximately 105 words. We have outlined a sample structure for your reference below.
Here’s a sample format for your show notes:
- Introduction: Start with an attention-grabbing hook related to the podcast topic.
- Guest introduction: Briefly introduce the guest, highlighting their expertise or relevance to the episode's theme.
- Summary: Provide a concise summary of the main points discussed in the episode.
- Additional resources: Include links to articles, books, or relevant content mentioned in the episode for further exploration.
- Guest bios and contact information: Offer detailed bios of the guests and links to their social media or websites (with their consent).
- Acknowledgment of sponsors: Thank your sponsors by featuring their information or ad copy in the show notes.
- Call to Action: Encourage action from the audience—direct them to websites, past episodes, or social media platforms, emphasizing engagement and support.
4. Boost your web presence
Think of your podcast as something that works in conjunction with all your other brand marketing tactics.
Here are a few ways we suggest doing this:
Podcast website/landing pages:
A podcast website or dedicated podcast landing page is essential to help improve the reach and discovery of your show. It also plays a vital role in helping engage your audience.
Essentially, a podcast landing page is a centralized hub where listeners can access everything related to your show. From blog posts and transcripts to show notes and full episodes, your podcast’s site should be a one-stop-shop for listeners looking for more information.
Here are some elements we suggest including in your podcast’s landing page and an example from Banfield Pet Hospital’s branded podcast, Not Just Fluff:
- Full episode list and listening app links
- Blog posts, reports, and whitepapers that complement your show
- Show notes
- Host bios
- Show and episode descriptions
- Newsletter sign-up
- Social media handles
- Your contact information
- 1-2 CTAs, for example, subscribe to our newsletter, follow the show on social media, and (of course) listen to our latest episode.
We love this landing page because it is simple, on-brand, and allows readers to access the show easily on their favorite listening app or directly on the site.
Social media platforms
Leveraging social media sites like Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn, to share content about your podcast helps boost your discoverability and create a loyal community around your podcast. In fact, results released by Edison Research for The Podcast Consumer show that 67% of podcast listeners across America found new podcasts because of social media.
Depending on your target audience, your social media presence will look a little different. As a general rule, Gen Z and Millenials tend to live more on TikTok and Instagram; whereas, Gen X and Boomers hang out more on Facebook. If your brand has a B2B podcast or trying to attract a more corporate listenership, we suggest focusing on Linkedin.
CoHost Tip: Looking to level up your podcast social media strategy? Download our free social media planner for the tools you need to plan content while providing recommendations for the type of content you should be sharing across your channels.
Video podcasting on YouTube
With 5x as many users as podcasting platforms, YouTube represents a massive opportunity for podcast discoverability.
On top of that, YouTube is continuing to adapt to podcast consumption. We can see this most notably in Google Podcasts' anticipated migration to YouTube in 2024. We can also see this in less obvious ways. For example, YouTube videos in 2005 were about two minutes long on average. Now, the average YouTube video is above 15 minutes. This increase is largely due to the increasing demand for longer-form content on the platform.
While in 2019 only 17% of podcasts were leveraging video, it’s been reported that 85% of companies captured video for their podcasts in 2023. This corresponds to listener preferences with 46% of podcast listeners saying they prefer podcasts with video.
CoHost Tip: Is your brand considering leveraging YouTube to expand the reach of your show? Check out our article to learn the ins and outs of YouTube for podcasting.
5. Invest in high-quality audio
A listener should be able to easily listen, learn, and be entertained. If you tune into any of the best-ranked shows on Spotify, Google Play, Apple, or iTunes, you’ll notice that they all have a consistently high standard of sound quality.
You want to ensure that your listeners keep coming back every time you publish. Besides, you don’t want all the hard work you put into creating quality content to be overlooked because your audio is too distracting.
A big part of good audio quality is investing in the right podcast equipment. The other side of the equation is having a strong team including an audio engineer to make sure everything sounds pitch-perfect before publishing.
CoHost Tip: Recording remotely? No problem. Check out the list of our top remote recording software to ensure your podcast sounds great wherever you are.
6. Launch a newsletter or combine with an existing one
Emails are still one of the most effective ways to reach your audience.
According to Mailchimp, the average open rate for emails is approximately 20% and the average click-through rate sits around 3% – much higher than social media or display advertising.
By using your newsletter to highlight some of your unique podcast content, you’ll be able to create some great buzz around your show, which translates to upping your podcast’s discoverability.
What lots of people don’t realize is that the power of a podcast and a newsletter are similar in that you are creating an intimate connection between the creator and the listener or reader. It’s through these channels that you can build up a sense of trust with people that keeps them coming back.
But remember, it’s important that your newsletter provides value to your reader and isn’t simply self-promotional. There are ways to build up your email mailing lists by running giveaways on social and creating posts or audiograms that encourage email sign-ups.
If you’re looking to add some branded podcast content to your inbox, check out our list of the best branded podcast newsletters you need to stay ahead of the audio curve.
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7. Publish consistently
Consistency is key to the success of your podcast.
When you publish your podcast episodes regularly, you give your listeners the power to build your show into their lives.
But if you aren’t dependable, they’ll look for another podcaster who accommodates their life better. Most obviously, publishing a podcast regularly helps with discoverability because there is simply more content for potential listeners to discover.
While you may think that having a consistent posting schedule goes without saying, you might be surprised to know that there are currently 2.5 million podcasts on Apple Podcasts, but only 450,000 are active. Inactive podcasts are classified as shows that have not released a new episode in 90 days or more, meaning that 82% of the shows on Apple Podcasts have technically “podfaded.”
If you’re going to take a little break or if your show is between seasons, let your listeners know when they can expect to hear from you again and where they can connect with you in the meantime. Whether that be social media, email, or at a live event.
CoHost Tip: We understand that sometimes consistency can be hard – especially when podfade starts to kick in, so we put together a comprehensive guide to help you maintain motivation and avoid podfade.
Are you ready to make your podcast stand out?
The journey to enhanced discoverability is a dynamic process that demands innovation and adaptability. By embracing these seven creative approaches, you can amplify your podcast's reach and resonance.
Remember, discoverability is not solely about algorithms and trends, but also about forging genuine connections with your audience and consistently delivering valuable content.
So, embark on this exploration with enthusiasm, and let your podcast's voice reverberate far and wide through the digital waves, making a lasting impact on listeners eager to engage with your unique perspective and compelling narratives.
Need help with boosting your podcast discoverability? Get in touch with the team at CoHost.