Show notes are the vital and critical link to not only share important highlights of the show and give insights into what to expect, but this is the way we credit the team behind your podcast and share links that relate to your Call To Action. They also help optimise your SEO. Episode descriptions come up in google search results, especially with the new format of Google Podcasts — and they inform your listener of what the episode focus is.
Here is a list of things every podcast episode description should contain:
- A catchy, scroll stopping Title, I love to create a play on words about the topic. Asking questions, making bold statements or using a stand out quote are effective ways to grab your listeners attention. It is like the title of a book and must create some level of intrigue.
- An actual description. Listeners usually read the first three lines. But they need to be able to check the show notes to find the episode they want to share (your CTA) or go back to. Do not include spoilers, this is the back of a book jacket and forms part of the SEO strategy. Think about what Google searches you want your episode to appear in? Include themes, topics and story ideas into your show notes, keeping it organic and inviting.
- Your cast and crew. Giving credit where it’s due. Include the names of your hosts, crew, guests and reference any musical signature artists in your show notes. Optionally include their socials and/or website link. Show appreciation for your editors, producers and directors. Even if you’re using free music or effects in your podcast, make sure you’re using the show notes to attribute them properly.
- Time Stamping. This is an effective way to highlight the conversation in a interview and draw attention to the topics discussed. It usually has the time at which the conversation starts and short text to describe the discussion. A quote, comment, topic or question works best.
- Important links. Ensure you include your podcast’s website. Advertising your website is a crucial link in self promotion and in turn delivering on your intention. Most podcasters don’t do this very well and same for your podcast’s socials. A consistent Call To Action to your on line presence and the second tier links to your Patreon or other published articles provide the social proof your listener is listening to. A big trend in podcasting has been the cross promotion of hosts with them not only interviewing each other (because they make great guests) but they are collaborating on projects and products.
- Images. Don’t make them too big— Placing them into the show notes, links, or using an image for the episode’s art is visually effective. To create a more dynamic visual story board, write a blog and insert the imagery that shares a little more. This is also great for behind the scene. We’ve been doing this for our live broadcasts and collating great quotes and comments as a summary for the podcast episode.