The hardest part of starting anything is getting started in the first place. And starting a podcast is no different. The build-up to launching your podcast and getting your first few episodes out there is half the battle won. But once you have the ball rolling, it’s time to build momentum – you need to keep getting more and more ears on your unique content.
And one of the most crucial ways you can do this is by boosting your podcast discoverability. Podcast discoverability is exactly as it sounds – it’s taking the necessary steps to make it easy for potential listeners to discover your podcast. And with the number of podcasts hitting over 2,040,905, you need to do even more to make your podcast rise to the top of the charts.
There has always been much debate when it comes to podcast discoverability. To give a quick overview: there are some who say that there is a podcast discoverability problem because there is a lack of technological development enabling search engines to crawl and index audio, thus making it difficult for podcasts to turn up in Internet searches. The other side of the argument are those who say there is no podcast discoverability, the only problem is that podcast hosts haven’t done what it takes for their show to be discoverable.
But whichever side of the argument you fall on, the fact remains that discoverability is vital to the growth of your podcast audience and the ultimate success and longevity of your show. And you need to take action to set you and your podcast up for success.
And we’ve got just the strategies to help you take that action! Let’s dive into some of the tried and tested methods for boosting your podcast’s discoverability.
For some facts and figures, and a general interesting read on the topic, check out this article: Podcast Discovery Stats in 2020 | How Do Listeners Discover New Shows? put together by the Podcast Host.
1. Improve Your Podcast’s SEO Odds
Strategy 1: You need to take specific steps to improve your podcast’s search engine optimization (SEO) odds. Your podcast becomes more discoverable when you create opportunities for discovery. And these opportunities are strategies you can employ outside of your podcast itself to help make your show more discoverable.
We have a few suggestions to help boost your show’s SEO:
Transcribe Your Podcast Episodes
If you’re a regular reader of our posts, you’ll know that we are definitely “Team Transcribe”. This is because search engines need text to successfully index content. Creating written content of your podcast is, therefore, one of the best ways to optimize your searchability on the web and maximize your probability of discovery.
Related read: The Top 5 Benefits of Transcribing Your Podcast
Create Episode Show Notes
In the same vein as transcription, show notes improve the discoverability of your podcast by giving search engines more text to crawl and index, helping your podcast show up in the results of a web search. Show notes add tons of value to your audience, and they improve your discoverability by showing potential listeners that your audio content is incredibly valuable. If listeners are searching for information on a particular topic, your show notes can help get your podcast front and center as a top source of the information they’re after.
Related read: How To Write Amazing Show Notes For Your Podcast
Boost Your Web Presence
Create a website, write a blog, send out a newsletter, establish and post to an Instagram account – essentially, use any and all social or web-based platforms available to share content about your podcast. All of these will greatly improve the discoverability of your podcast, as each different form of content positions your show in a prime location and makes it that much easier to find.
2. Ensure Your Podcast Worth Discovering
It’s of no use taking steps to make your podcast more discoverable if, when listeners do discover your podcast, what they discover is a sub-par audio production with little to no valuable content! That won’t do at all! So our next strategy for boosting the discoverability of your podcast is to focus on your show itself.
A key strategy to improving your podcast’s discoverability is to make sure your podcast is worth discovery. While better search algorithms and some cool technological developments will improve podcast searchability, it won’t matter one bit if these amazing new advancements help listeners find your show and they discover a half-hearted collection of mediocre content.
Some key ways to make sure your podcast is worth discovering:
Consistently Create Stand-Out Content
The greatest responsibility you have as a podcaster is to consistently create stand-out content. You should ensure that each episode you create consists of worthwhile, valuable information that cater to the wants and needs of your target audience. Time is a commodity that is not in abundance considering the busy lives we lead. Your listener’s time is precious, and you as the podcaster should always treat it as such. If your listeners are giving some of their valuable time to you and your podcast, you should return the favor by giving them valuable content. Take great care to ensure that each and every episode you create is of high-quality and gives your audience exactly what they’re after…and so much more!
Ensure Your Episode Audio is of High Quality
This is another element of boosting the discoverability of your podcast that is squarely in your court! Ensuring that you’re always putting out podcast episodes that are of the highest audio quality will help keep your listeners coming back every time you publish, but it’s also one of the best hooks to help you turn that listener who happened to stumble onto your show into a fully-fledged member of your podcast community. There is no two ways about it really; if you want to make it in the podcasting industry – an industry that’s all about audio – then you have to do everything in your power to make sure your podcast measures up.
Related read: 10 Editing Tips To Increase Your Podcast Sound Quality
Consistency is key to the success of your podcast in so many ways. Consistency in the quality of your content, consistency in engaging with your audience, and consistency in your content publishing schedule. Publishing a podcast regularly helps with discoverability simply because there is more content for potential listeners to discover. It also builds your credibility and helps get you established on podcast directories, giving listeners an archive of great content to explore.
Related read: Why You Should Care About Your Podcast Launch
3. Branch Out
The third pillar of our discoverability plan is to take your awesome podcast content and branch out! If you want to get more ears on your content and more followers for your show, then you’re going to need to do more than just create awesome-sounding episodes and making your content SEO-friendly. You need to look at other avenues where you can make some noise about your podcast, and we’ve got a few suggestions…
Use Social Media
Nothing gives you the power to get your content out into cyberspace quite like social media. From Facebook to Twitter, Instagram to TikTok, and everything in between, these platforms give you so many options when it comes to sharing content and connecting with your target audience.
And results released by Edison Research for The Podcast Consumer 2019 prove this point! The survey showed that 67% of podcast listeners across America found new podcasts due to social media posts. This is an impressive number! And if you share your podcast content via the different social media platforms, your podcast becomes a beneficiary of those numbers!
For some quick ideas, you could take some top points from your latest episode and turn them into fun infographics or TikTok videos. You could create audiograms or videos which share some serious curiosity-building sneak peaks, or you could embrace Twitter and engage with your target audience on the platform.
Related read: Social Media Marketing Options For Podcasts
Run a giveaway on social media, create posts or pop-ups that encourage email sign-ups, or do whatever suits your target audience best to get more names on your email mailing list. Emails are still one of the most effective ways to reach your audience, and by using yours to highlight some your unique podcast content, you’ll be able to create some great buzz around your show, which translates to upping your podcast’s discoverability.
IMPORTANT! Make sure your newsletters aren’t just about self-promotion! Your newsletter also needs to full of other valuable info to your listeners! Otherwise, you’ll see those subscriber numbers plummeting!
Related read: How To Successfully Grow [And Retain!] Your Mailing List
Podchaser is hailed as the IMDB for podcasts, but the platform has become more than just a clever way to find your next great listen or follow your favorite podcaster! Not only does it feature universal ratings of episodes, which is a useful tool when it comes to finding amazing new shows to listen to, but Podchaser is also just a great way to connect with other avid podcast listeners from all over the world and put your podcast in front of more potential listeners. Set up a profile, create some knock-out lists, connect with other users, and you’ll be able to make a name for yourself and your show, and have your show popping up whenever users search for podcasts within your niche.
Podcast Recommendation Services
Podcast recommendation services are another great way to boost your podcast’s discoverability factor. These services delve the podcasting depths, and deliver some top podcast picks straight to their subscribers’ inboxes! And that “pick” could very well be your podcast! There are a number of different companies putting together these types of newsletters that you could aim to submit your podcast to, we’ve picked two as examples:
Podcast Delivery endeavors to sift through the mountain of podcasts available and find those standouts that we need to hear. They are a top pick as they always provide a great write-up of their featured podcasts, that really sum up the soul of the show and get the reader excited to check them out! Thanks to Podcast Delivery, I’ve subscribed to a number of podcasts that, on paper, are not my typical choices, but the write-ups were so good, I had to check them out! Follow the link above to see how you can submit your show for review.
Find That Pod
There is also the Find That Pod newsletter, another place I’ve discovered some great shows! A lot of time and effort goes into curating each newsletter, which definitely boosts the chances of subscribers checking out the suggestions! If you sign up to their newsletters, you’ll find the email address where you can submit your podcast as a possible candidate for a future newsletter!
Yes, there are a multitude of podcasts out there, with more joining every day, which is fantastic for the industry, but can be a little disheartening for the podcast host trying to carve out a space for their show. But that is why you need to do all you can to boost your podcast’s discoverability! You’ve put in the hard work of getting your show off the ground, now you need to do all you can to get your show in front of more people, and get more listeners hooked on your unique content.
Boosting your podcast’s discoverability factor is key to getting more eyes and ears on your content. But this is no a “quick fix” by any means. Boosting the discoverability is really a constant circle of making sure your podcast is discoverable, and then ensuring your podcast is worth discovering, and then placing this worthwhile content in as many places as possible. Do this, and listeners won’t be able to help but sit up and take notice of your show!