Show notes for podcasts are a brilliant opportunity for podcasters to get their show noticed. They differ from podcast transcripts, which are a word-for-word account of your entire episode.
Show notes, on the other hand, are a summary of each episode. They add value to your show by engaging your audience, attracting new listeners, and getting more guests to appear on your show.
More than that, they have the potential to turn readers into listeners.
If you can do both transcripts and show notes, more power to you. If you can only pick one, go with show notes.
Today, we will discuss the benefits of podcast show notes and how to take action on them accordingly.
The Benefits of Writing (& Publishing) Podcast Show Notes
Publishing your podcast show notes gives you an advantage over other podcasters. Here’s why.
You’ll Attract More Listeners
Writing show notes for your podcast gives listeners insight into the subject matter of your podcast before they listen. If people are already browsing a topic that your podcast covers, they’ll be more inclined to listen to it after reading the show notes.
It’s a nice bite-sized chunk of what to expect and tells the reader whether it’s what they’re looking for or not. It also shows the value of the content (or the amount of fun they can expect to have) included in your podcast.
You can use the opportunity to ensure that your show notes include important keywords that will appear in search engines.
This is because you are giving Google the tools to crawl and index your content effectively.
If your show notes are optimized for SEO, it increases the chance of more people finding your podcast and ultimately, will grow your audience and reach.
And don’t just stop at your show notes. Repurpose them for a blog, newsletter, and socials like LinkedIn and TikTok. Reading posts is higher on LinkedIn, and TikTok is now serving up search results based on text descriptions. (Afraid of posting video to TikTok? Wavve’s got you covered.)
Listeners Will Take More Action
If listeners have read your show notes, there’s a high chance they’re buying into your message. Therefore, they are likely to take action when reading your show notes, such as subscribing to your podcast, enrolling in a course you offer, or purchasing a product or service you’re selling.
There have been many attempts over the years of segmenting podcasts and relating those segments to different image covers, related links, mentioned links, and attached media. If and when this is widely implemented in RSS or other tools, you will be ready if you have a good show notes game.
It also allows listeners to quickly recap the episode in case they missed something or want to find a link you mentioned in the show.
What To Include In Your Show Notes
Below is our recommended podcast show notes format to help make your show successful.
Include An SEO-Optimized Title
As mentioned above, when someone searches for a topic related to one of your episodes, you want it to appear at the top of the results.
SEO is a fancy way of saying, “clearly tell people what you are talking about so they can find your show.” By including show notes in your podcast, with relevant keywords, you’re on a fast track to achieving this.
Ensure to include your keyword in the title, the first sentence, and the body text of your podcast show notes to assist in ranking in search results.
Are you talking about a dozen different topics and keywords? Think about any related keywords someone would use in searches for either entertainment or education around your topics. Then use those words to summarize your show.
For example, if you have a show where you talked about all the movies you saw recently, and your general opinion is positive because they helped you cope with loss, you may come up with a title that you did not directly talk about, but that summarizes your conversation: The 3 Must See Films of the Year If You Just Lost a Loved One.
Provide A Description Of Each Episode
Open with a hook. A short, enticing description that immediately piques the interest of the reader. Aim for about 140 characters to satisfy Google search result descriptions, simple tweet shares, podcast feed episode description fields, etc. This initial one to two sentence summary will assist in attracting more listeners to your podcast series.
Next, let readers know how your podcast episode can benefit them or enrich their lives.
And definitely try to avoid lengthy descriptions as big blocks of text as this habit may cost you listeners.
Agenda or Summary of Discussion Topics
An agenda helps the reader to easily navigate the copy so that they can see what was discussed in the podcast and at what point.
Instead of bullets, use timestamps to create a simple structure that readers can seamlessly follow. This should essentially be a list of your main talking points. There’s no need for a description of each topic. Just a list of keywords or phrases readers can briefly scan.
Include Thorough Information On Your Guests
If you’ve had a guest on your podcast, this should be vividly addressed in your show notes as it can be a major draw to attract new listeners.
Include their name, occupation (or why they were on your show), and perhaps an interesting, relevant fact about them. For example:
“In this episode John Harvey, Trauma Specialist, joins us and reveals his secret for overcoming fear.”
Another fantastic benefit of publishing show notes is that it can bring in more guests to your show.
Communicate to your potential guests that you publish show notes as an opportunity for them to share their relevant channels, helpful links, discount codes, and where they are most active online.
Add Links To Resources
Links to relevant data, articles, research, and so on should be listed in your podcast show notes. Make sure you include the entire URL so that readers can find them easily.
It’s also a great place to drop in links to previous episodes that may be relevant. This will encourage listeners to go back and discover older content, which in turn will help gain more listeners.
Include An Eye-catching Call To Action (CTA)
A clear, punchy CTA is necessary for all marketing efforts as it encourages listeners to take a desired action.
The CTA should be relevant to your episode. In other words, if you’ve been raving about your new organic shampoo, use this opportunity to promote sales by inserting a “Buy Now” button.
If your episode has been more general, design your CTA to ask listeners to leave a review, subscribe to your podcast, or sign up for your newsletter.
It’s best to add one button per episode so that you don’t overwhelm your listeners.
Podcast show notes are an excellent and underrated way to advertise the sheer magic of your podcast.
It is beneficial for both you and your potential listeners in that you are able to maximize your SEO efforts and able to rank higher on search results; which in turn, helps listeners find your podcast when searching for a similar topic in your sphere.
And if you haven’t gotten around to doing this on past episodes, maybe during breaks in publishing new episodes, you can optimize your back catalogue.
Use these tips to add more value to your listeners, grow your audience, and drive new traffic to your podcast.
I’m the CEO of Wavve. I love encouraging creators and entrepreneurs to share their stories and lead with purpose.