Podcast Show Notes: 101 Podcasting Guide

A successful podcast is way more than the great content your offer your listners in the episode and top-quality audio. In fact, a lot of what determines the success of your podcast is text-based!

Text-based content is what makes your podcast discoverable to search engine bots. But, what does it mean for an audio-based platform like podcasts? Well, it is not very good news for us podcasters!

As audio-content creators, we have to employ numerous tactics to get our episodes and podcast be visible. And one of the easiest ways to achieve it is podcast show notes!

What are Podcast Show Notes?

Listeners can find out more about your guests, or the topic, by reading your podcast show notes, which are a written summary of what happened on your podcast. It encourages listeners to tune in to your episode by giving them a taste of what to expect.

There are different forms and lengths of podcast show notes. They could be a simple summary with links, or a detailed description of what happened during an episode, with additional resources, such as links to articles mentioned, guest bios, social media channels, videos, and transcripts, and relevant calls-to-actions.

With show notes, you can take your listeners one step beyond passive listening to taking action. It is the section of your podcast that allows you to engage with your listers.

Though every podcaster has the flexibility to customize their show notes according to their needs any way they like, however, there are a few things you should always keep in mind while putting your show notes together.

Why are Podcast Show Notes Important?

Podcasts show notes, images, and text summaries enhance the audio content to provide a more in-depth look at a topic, allowing both visual and audio consumers to gain a better understanding of the subject matter. Some of the advantages of podcast show notes are:

Encourage Casual Followers to Tune in

You should use show notes to share key takeaways and explain why this episode is not to be missed in order to convince casual listeners to tune in. There are some people who require a little extra convincing to play, and show notes are the ideal opportunity for them to be persuaded.

Centralize Calls-to-Action

Every podcast host wants their audience to take multiple actions during the life of the podcast. You may want your listners to subscribe to the newsletter, purchase tickets to live shows, leave a review, or become a Patreon member.

When you include calls-to-action within show notes, listeners do not have to remember multiple URLs to move forward. It’s the same as including links to external resources in one place.

Enables you to Fabricate Best SEO Practices

Using target keywords and SEO best practices to write detailed posts highlighting the key takeaways from each podcast episode so that they appear in Google search results. It is important to consider what keywords potential listeners might use to locate your podcast.

Unable to find the perfect SEO-focused keywords? Try using Ubersuggest and Google Keyword Planner to analyze the strength of your keyword and idea for relevant topics in your episode niche and industry. By utilizing these strategies, your podcast note will rank higher, thus reaching more eyeballs, resulting in a skyrocketing increment in listenership. Which is what all of us want at the end of the day! Right?

Podcast Show Notes Best Practices

Hook the Audeince With the Opening

The attention span of users online is approximately eight seconds. So, if you want your audience to stay till the very last word of your podcast note, then you need to hook them fast.

Either you should be a strong opener, or you risk losing them. Decide wisely which one it’s gonna be!

Here are a few tricks of engaging your potential listeners into your show notes:

  • Start off with a thought-provoking question
  • Lead with a captivating story
  • Use a cliffhanger
  • Be personal
  • Keep the introduction short and direct
  • Debunk conventional wisdom
  • Include a bio (more appropriate for an interview show)

Opening your show notes with the above wouldn’t only hook your listener, but provide them a solid foundation for the rest of the copy.

Optimize the Note with SEO Friendly Title and Copy

The purpose of your show notes is to appease search engines, so use SEO best practices. Each page should be targeted with a niche-specific keyword. Place the keyword in key places in your podcast show notes such as:

  • Your page title
  • The page’s URL. As close to the domain as possible
  • The primary heading (<h1>)
  • A few subheadings (<h3>, <h2>)
  • The first and last 100 words of the text area on the page
  • Distributed in reasonable places throughout the copy
  • Images with ALT attributes
  • We recommend using WordPress plugins like Squirrly SEO or Yoast SEO to help optimize your pages

Ensure that you use your keyword regularly throughout your content. Google needs to see your keywords distributed evenly in the show notes in order to properly index your page. However, remember that, ultimately, you’re writing for readers who don’t want to read content that’s not stuffed keywords only.

Visuals, Charts, and Videos

In addition to any chart, graph, image, infographic, video, or other visuals you might refer to in your podcast, it’s helpful to include them in your podcast show notes. Your images capture the reader’s attention, support your content, and give them something to share.

It is also a good idea to Include custom images throughout the show notes. Consider including a picture of your guest, a behind-the-scenes shot, or a graphic with a memorable quote. People love to share this kind of content.

Link Sources

If you are advertising or promoting the products or services of your sponsor in the show, subsequently, mentioning them in the podcast note will further endorse the brand.

Moreover, citing the links to resources like tools, books, people, or websites mentioned during the course of the show will also provide your listners with an easy reference point.

Expert Tip: Want to make some easy revenues? Set up an affiliate link for influencers or podcasters who often mention you in their shows. You can easily make some extra cash with these affiliate links along with providing your listners with high-value content.

Skimmable Notes

While you read any copy, do you focus on every word? Chances are you don’t.

Studies have shown that readers rarely read any page in-depth, instead they skim or scan and only emphasize areas that catch their attention.

Therefore, as a content creator, Be sure to create podcast show notes that are easy to skim and digest. Your content should be divided into subheadings that are clear and descriptive. Avoid jargon. Remember, the purpose of your writing is to help your readers find the information they need or decide not to need it.

Consider using bullet points whenever possible. Always try writing short paragraphs in no more than 3-4 lines.

End with a Captivating Call-to-Action

An effective way to end your show notes is to include a call to action. A request to sign up for your weekly email newsletter, to subscribe to your podcast wherever they listen, or a link to that useful new resource you are offering at the moment.

A podcast can be a great way to drive traffic to your website, gain new customers, and increase awareness of your brand. A well-crafted call-to-action at the end of your show notes will serve as another tool to help your podcast accomplish its goals.

Transcription as Show Notes: A Better Option?

Lastly, here’s another option. Transcripts may be worth considering if you are really short on time. You can get your entire episode transcribed for as little as $1 per minute.

Listeners will find these transcriptions very useful if you’re doing shorter, focused episodes. The listeners get nice, long, meaty content in return with little effort on your part.

This way, you would only have to write a 50-word introduction, then add the transcription afterward. Likewise, you can add links where appropriate to the transcription, so that the listener can locate the relevant resources. The reader may find a compiled list of resources useful here, as it eliminates the need to trawl through a long transcription

Unfortunately, the spoken word often does not translate well into writing. Transcripts without editing are often long, rambling, and written in poor English. The number of times we don’t use complete or correct sentences is surprising! A transcription in this case would not offer much value.

However, it depends on how you present and how you speak. Generally, solo shows provide more useful transcriptions, while conversations can just appear as a confusing muddle on paper. It is definitely a worthwhile endeavor, but it’s not for everyone!

Bonus: Best Practice Format

Here is a little bonus for our podcast enthusiasts- the ideal podcast show note format:

  • Episode Summary: either bullet points or paragraph
  • Episode Player: embed the player of your episode in the show notes
  • Timecode guide: topics distributed in timecodes to let listners tune in to the section they most resonate with
  • Full Topic Guide: a blog post with almost the same topic as the episode
  • Resources Mentioned: links to the sources and summary of the episode

Hiring a Podcast Show Writer

Not all podcasters have the time or the skills needed to write a captivating podcast, or you may simply don’t want to write your own podcast notes. So, why don’t you outsource it all together?

At SayWHA Radio Network, over a decade of excellence in the podcasting industry has helped our team master the skill of podcast show notes writing. With show notes written to attract traffic organically to your podcast, you will see a sharp increase in your listenership.

Do not forget, show notes are an important step in the ladder leading your podcast to the top. Don’t take it lightly!

Hire the expert podcast show notes writer now!




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