PodSchool Podcast | What are show notes and why do you need them?


Discover all the tools and tech you need to get your podcast started. Plus get access to my weekly podcasting tips delivered straight to your inbox!


Isn’t it just more work?

Show notes are essentially a written post on your website that relates to the content you cover in your podcast episodes.

And when there’s so much stuff you need to do to get your podcast out into the world it’s easy to chuck them onto the ‘can’t be stuffed’ pile.

But here’s why you shouldn’t forget about your podcast show notes…

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Show notes encourage people to come to your website

Ideally you want the relationship with your audience to continue outside the time they’re listening to your show.

If people like an episode they might want to delve a little deeper into the content that you’ve covered and they’ll need a place to do that.

Or they might be keen to learn more about you so it’s good to have somewhere they can do a little snooping.

Getting people to your website via your show notes page gives them the opportunity to poke around and get a greater sense of who you are and what you do.

This additional point of contact helps them feel connected to you as a presenter and that’s great for strengthening the relationship you have with your audience.

Do you need a website for your podcast?


Show notes are great for SEO

If you want your podcast to be found by new listeners it needs to be featured in search results and that’s where SEO comes in.

SEO is a process of making sure the posts and pages on your website are packed with keywords you want to be found for when people are searching for content in your niche.

To be indexed by Google your posts need to be longer than 300 words which means you can’t just jot down your episode title, an embed of your show and that’s it.  You need to put in a little effort.

An easy way to get around this is by transcribing your episodes and placing the transcription on your show notes page or by using this transcript as the base to create a more detailed blog post.

Either way, the more relevant keywords your show notes pages have the better.

A beginner’s guide to podcast SEO


Show notes let you share other resources

At the end of your podcast episodes, it’s never a good idea to list off 700 things you want your audience to do because you want to keep it simple.

However, if you direct them to your show notes page you can house everything you want them to see there.

Maybe you’ve got an online course you’d like them to enrol in or maybe you want people to join your email list or purchase a product through one of your affiliate links.

If all of these things are detailed on your show notes page your audience can investigate on their own without feeling like you’re shoving it down their throats.

How to end your podcast episodes


Show notes increase your authority

The more content you have on your website the more legitimate you’ll look to search engines and cyber passers-by.

Seeing as you’re already creating content for your podcast episode’s anyway, show notes can be an easy way to add information to your website without needing to come up with fresh content from scratch.

Building your authority online is an important part of growing your audience and your brand.

So, the more useful and information-packed your show notes are, the better.

Should you transcribe your podcast episodes?


Show notes can be accessed on all devices

When sharing your episodes you want a link that’s going to work for everyone no matter what device they’re on.

You might not realise it but if you share a link to your show in Apple Podcasts it doesn’t work for people on Android phones.

And we all know there’s nothing more frustrating than ending up in internet purgatory.

But a link to your show notes page works for everyone because it sends a user straight to your website, not a third-party podcasting app.

Just make sure you’ve got all the ways to subscribe listed on that page so people can go to the app that’s right for their phone.

How to share your podcast to iPhone and Android with one link


Show notes are a great reference for your audience

If you’re referencing things you want your audience to check out or follow up on after the episode it’s best to detail those links on your show notes page.

That way listeners can relax and enjoy your content rather than having to listen intently with a notepad and pen.

The more helpful and detailed you can make these resources the better it’ll be for your audience.

How to choose the right player for your podcast


Show notes give you more opportunities to share content

Not only can your audience share your show notes (another reason to make them interesting) you can also highlight small parts of each episode and profile them using a tool like Click To Tweet.

This can encourage your audience to share small tips or quotes from your show on social media which helps spread the word.

If you want to create a strong connection with your fans you need to give them more points of contact than just their ears.

So, if you’ve got time (and you should make time) show notes are worth the extra effort.

Got a burning podcasting question you’d like answered? Send me an email.

Want to start your own podcast but need a little help?  Download my “How To Start A Podcast” guide or sign up for my online podcasting course, PodSchool.

Got some time on your hands? Read the full episode transcript

Hello and welcome to the show. Today I'm going to be talking about show notes. What are they? Do you need to be doing them? Is it something you need to bother with? Am I trying to add something else to your already long list of things to do? I know it's a punish...there's a lot of stuff to get through but show notes are an important thing to be doing for a number of reasons and it is not just for your audience. There are a lot of benefits for you as a podcast e r so if you've got a wee bit of extra time it's a really great idea.
The first reason that it's great (and I'll start with your audience) is that if they like your show they're going to want to have somewhere to come to learn more about it. They'll also want to know what other episodes you have, your back story and a way to get in touch with you.
So all of this stuff is really useful to have if you want to turn people who are listening into fans who feel connected to you and like they have a way to get in touch with you. Also, the more stuff you have on your website the more of an authority you appear to be and that's not just to your audience that's to the big search engine that we all love so much Google. The more stuff you have on there the more of an authority you seem. Having that hub where your audience can go is a great resource and it also makes you look more professional. It can also be a great resource because nobody walks around listening to a podcast with a pad and pen furiously writing down notes. So if you are talking about a lot of different things your listeners can just enjoy your content knowing there's a place to go to find all of the links to everything you've referred to. You can also use your show notes page as a place to provide more detail so maybe you want to flesh something out that you've touched on in your podcast.
If you have an email list that can be a great thing to link to when you're sending an email out. It's often hard when you're sending people directly to a podcast subscriber page like iTunes or Stitcher because not everybody has an iPhone and not everybody has an Android so it's hard to send a link that encompasses everyone. So if you just send people to your show notes page and you have a player embedded in there and links to how they can subscribe, it's a great central location to send them to.
The other thing that's great for you is that it's always good to get people to your website. Traffic is lovely and you might have some other things that you want to offer there. Maybe you've got a YouTube channel you want people to subscribe to or a book you're selling or resources you want to share. You could have affiliate links you could pop onto the page so you can get a cut from things your audience are buying.

It's also great for that holy grail of all content which is SEO - Search Engine Optimisation. Those three wonderful words that most of us still don't understand and we're just desperately trying to get our heads around but essentially if you have a place where your content lives and you have a show notes page that has a good whack of information on it (you need over 300 words to be even picked up in Google) then when people search something in your niche you might turn up in that Google search. If your show notes page pops up in those search results then people can click on it, see you've got a podcast and subscribe that way. So it's great for discovery.
One of the easiest ways to compile your show notes page is by transcribing your episode. You can go online to websites like Trint and Rev and if you go back in the feed or just head to my website you'll find another episode that is all about transcribing your episodes. And this is essentially where you upload the audio file and it automatically spits it right back out at you and it's cheap as chips. Be warned that this is usually better for solo shows or an interview show but if you've got two or three people hosting a show it can be a bit of a nightmare.
I usually transcribe my shows and use that transcription to flesh out my notes page so I don't have to type everything from scratch.
You can also use your show notes page as a place for people to get content to share out on their social media. You can use tools like Click to Tweet which allows you to take little quotes from your show notes page to your episode and then put them in a little tweet where people click on it and it immediately populates their Twitter feed so that they can tweet it out. So basically you're doing the hard work for them.
If you want to create strong fans who feel connected to you there has to be a little bit of a give and take in there has to be more contact than just in your ears. People have to feel like you are in some way tangible because they're not going to sit down and meet you so they do need to feel like there are other ways to get in contact with you and the more stuff that exists online the more of an authority figure that you will appear to be.
Show notes shouldn't be an afterthought to your show but in some cases they might not be worth it e.g. comedy shows, shows where there isn't a lot of additional information to provide to your audience.
At the end of the day it has to suit your content. You also have to remember that all of these words you say on your show don't get picked up by search engines. So there's a whole heap of juicy information that can't be searched. So you really want to get the most out of those words down on the internets version of paper - your show notes page.
Thanks so much for listening to this episode you can head to my show notes page at PodSchoolPodcast.com just type "show notes" into the search bar and this episode will pop right up. If you are enjoying the show as well I would love it if you would leave a rating or a review where ever you listen to podcasts. I'll see you next week and until then, happy podcasting.

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Discover all the tools and tech you need to get your podcast started. Plus get access to my weekly podcasting tips delivered straight to your inbox!