If you’re a podcaster, it’s likely you’ve at least heard the term show notes bantered about. Or maybe you haven’t. Either way, you don’t just need to know what show notes are, it is essential that you are creating them too.
Show notes provide an overview of your podcast episode. They are similar to the description that most hosting platforms require, but are more detailed. In addition to describing the purpose of your podcast, show notes provide more information on the episode, give background on your guests and list useful links mentioned in your podcast. They end up becoming like a commercial for your show.
Still not convinced you should be creating show notes?
Let's see if I can convert you. Below are 5 crucial reasons why you need show notes for each episode of your podcast.
Above all else, show notes are essential for SEO purposes.
Podcasts are great and all, but search engines can’t scroll through audio content. Your show might be full of fresh, engaging content that hundreds of people are actively Goggling. However if your words are stuck in an audio file, it will be harder, if not impossible, to find.
In order for your podcast to rank highly on the likes of Google, you will need to convert your audio to text and include some written content about your podcast on the Internet in order for it to be indexed.
Whilst a description of your podcast offers some level of text to help with this, show notes provide more words and sentences for search engines to scroll through.
Your show notes also give you an opportunity to embed your target SEO keywords, which additionally helps you to be found in search engine results. The more relevant the information that you include in your show notes, the better chance that individuals will stumble across your show when Googling those target words in a search engine.
Boosts Your Credibility
With over 28 million podcasts episodes out there today, any way to add some authority behind what you are saying is likely to increase your listener numbers.
Think about it. Which type of information do you find more credible on the web? Information that appears on sloppy, unorganised web pages with limited detail? Or information that appears on professional-looking, organised, web pages full of useful content? Personally, I always choose to engage with the information that looks more professional. It just seems more credible to me.
Show notes help add this instant credibility in two ways: by including reference links to additional resources and by simply having more content. The more content that you have the more legitimate you will appear to individuals that stumble upon your podcast. Additionally, backing up what you say with legitimate resource links will also increase your authority.
Builds a Stronger Relationship with Your Audience
To build a stronger connection with your listeners and create a fan base you are going to need to need to engage with them through other senses beyond hearing. Show notes can help with this.
How, you ask?
Well, if a listener liked your show, it is also likely that they will want to know more about the topic you discussed. Directing them to your show notes not only gives you an opportunity to provide this additional information, but it can help you to engage with them on a deeper level.
This is achieved by including clickable links about the topics and research you mentioned in your podcast, encouraging them to leave comments with their thoughts, asking them to join your email list or enticing them to purchase a produce through one of your affiliate links. Giving your listeners this opportunity to support you, your guest and to engage on things you’re discussing results in a deeper relationship with your listener.
The knock-on effect is that the deeper relationship your listener has with you and your show, the more likely that they will keep coming back to your podcast. Heck, they might even feel compelled to tell others about you, and that’s a real win.
Helps You Create A Piece of Sharable Content
In the process of creating your show notes, you should identify one great quote from your podcast to highlight in the text. (We discuss below how automatic transcription makes this process easy. ) Simply choose a quote that both summarises the main idea of your show and is also catchy and attention grabbing.
This pull-out quote can be used to peek an individuals interest in listening to your podcast episode on both your show notes page and across social media outlets. For the later, simply overly your chosen quote onto a relevant image and embed a link to your show notes page. An easy way to create a sharable graphic.
The result is a quick way to market your podcast to broader audiences.
Makes Your Podcast Accessible On Any Device
If you promote your podcast on social media, it is often challenging to embed a single link to your audio that everyone can access. Individuals listen to podcasts on different devices and a link that might work for one won’t work for another.
A simple way around this is with show notes.
When promoting your podcast, if you include a link to your show notes page instead, you can detail how listeners can subscribe to your show depending on how they listen to podcasts.
The Easy Way to Create Show Notes
I hope by now, I've convinced you of the crucial reasons why you need show notes.
But how do you create them?
If you don’t fancy yourself as a writer, or simply lack the time to create show notes, don’t worry. There is an easy way to create some some basic show notes. Simply use an automatic transcription service provider to convert the entire podcast audio to text.
The benefit of seeing the entire text of your audio is that you can quickly find quotes to pull out and feature, as mentioned above. Additionally it makes it easier to note where you and your guests reference additional resources that you might want to feature in your show notes. It also is much easier to read transcripts of previous episodes and see where you can cross-reference material, building more views of your podcast episodes.
Crafting consistent quality show notes are important for enhancing SEO, boosting credibility, building relationships, creating content and increasing accessibility. In addition to all these benefits, show notes allow you to maximise the ROI of your podcast and to ensure that you reach more listeners and subscribers.
Next week we will discuss in-depth how to make engaging show notes easily using automatic transcription and give you details on what precisely to include.