Becoming successful in the podcast industry is without a doubt one of the most enjoyable, rewarding experiences you can have as a content creator.
With the ability to talk about what you want, say what you want, and have who you want on the show, it is all up to you.
With that in mind, it isn’t easy to get your podcast among the top-ranking, but there are many things you can do to increase your podcast rankings and gain the popularity that your show deserves!
In this article, you’ll find ten of the best ways to improve your podcast ranking and reach the top in your niche.
Top 10 Ways to Make Your Podcast More Popular
1. Take podcast search engine optimization into account
If you’ve ever written a blog post, created a webpage, or done any other sort of content creation, you have probably heard of search engine optimization or SEO. SEO is the lifeblood of getting more traffic to your content since better SEO will lead to higher ranking results as produced by search engines.
When it comes to podcasts, SEO is a bit different than websites or blogs — there is a lot less taken into account when someone searches for a podcast. The backbone of podcast SEO is the text search.
This refers to the text that listeners will type in the search bar to find a podcast that they want to listen to. You want to think about the specific keywords that will drive people towards your show and incorporate them into your podcast title and episode names to draw as much attention to your show as possible.
If you have a podcast about a specific niche, consider calling the show something specific about that niche. If you’re one of many podcast creators with a clever name for their podcast that isn’t particularly great at optimizing SEO, don’t fret. You’ll just need to make sure the episode names and descriptions that you write are keyword rich. The better your keyword usage is, the higher your show will appear for potential listeners to find you!
2. Create content worth listening to
This one may seem like common sense, but it’s one of the most surefire ways to draw more attention to your podcast and gain more listeners. The industry is so saturated with podcasts nowadays, it is a bit harder for the average person to just make a podcast, talk about anything, and succeed.
Creating something that is worth listening to will go a long way towards upping the popularity of your podcast. Making great content will improve your podcast ranking in a variety of ways including:
- People that listen to podcasts love to talk about their favorite podcasts! If you’re able to create something that people truly enjoy listening to, they’ll likely talk about with their friends and encourage them to listen to your show too!
- Giving your listeners a new podcast to keep an eye out for your new episodes and even subscribe to your show.
- Engaging content will encourage your listeners to stay longer and listen to more of the show, resulting in more listeners throughout the show.
Without creating good content, chances are your podcast will struggle to succeed no matter how good your keyword usage is or how many episodes you pump out every week. Quality content is key.
3. Ask your listeners to review your podcast
Outside of keyword use, user reactions to your podcast is one of the most important aspects of podcast SEO that will drive you up to the top of the rankings. When someone searches for a podcast, the service they are using is more likely to show them a show with better reviews as well as a higher number of reviews. This indicates that your show is good enough for people to take extra time out of their day to review and rate it, which goes a long way.
Try not to harp on asking your listeners to review the podcast too many times throughout the episode. Throwing in a quick blurb once or twice asking them to leave a rating before they leave will be enough to get people to do so if they love your podcast. Nothing is more off-putting than listening to podcasts and you’re constantly being asked to review the show every 5 minutes.
4. Offer and promote subscription service to your listeners
As alluded to in the previous tip to improve your podcast ranking, you want to have repeat listeners that enjoy listening to your show again and again. When someone subscribes to your show, they will get notified when you release new episodes and likely will want to come and listen to see what you’ve got for them this time.
Subscribers are also great for podcast rankings in general. If a show has 10,000 subscribers, they’ll likely be shown before a show with 50 subscribers, all else being equal. This will help you to generate more views and subsequently more subscribers — what a beautiful cycle!
Encourage your listeners to subscribe during a show and even offer incentives to subscribers. If you can offer your subscribers early access to episodes or even a bonus episode here and there only available to subscribers, your listeners will be more likely to hit that subscribe button!
5. Promote your podcast on social media platforms
Social media is one of the best ways to promote your podcast and gain more listeners. It makes sense, considering the same people that listen to podcasts are also more likely to venture onto social media sites throughout the day.
With the vast options in the industry today, there are many ways to promote your show through social media. You can create a dedicated profile for your podcast or a group that the listeners can discuss the recent episodes in. You can pay to have a sponsored or promoted post, which will be seen by a large number of viewers.
It is estimated that over 3.8 billion people use social media in 2020. That is just under half of the world’s population! This should give you a sense of how social media can go a long way to helping you gain more listeners. Get creative, social media is massive in today’s world, and one of the best ways to attract more viewers.
6. Upload on a consistent schedule
The nature of the human race is typically to follow a schedule or routine to a certain extent. This isn’t a bad thing, and it’s something everyone does. Take this into account and use it to your advantage to draw in more regular customers by uploading your episodes regularly.
Take a look at some of the most popular content creators out there, be it YouTubers or podcast creators, chances are they upload their episodes on a consistent schedule. This schedule is up to you to decide — do you want to upload every day, once a week, once a month, etc?
Come up with a schedule that works for you and try to release the episodes at a good time for your target audience. If your audience is mainly Americans, for example, don’t release episodes at 3 am EST on a weekday. Figure out a schedule that works for you and your audience and stick to it best you can. Your audience will enjoy the regularity, and you’ll reap the rewards of doing so.
7. Make a website for the show
While many people that listen to podcasts regularly search for them on iTunes or Spotify, there are still a large number of people who simply use Google to find one. Having a website of your own dedicated to the show is a great way to gain these additional listeners by directing them to your show.
The site doesn’t need to be particularly flashy, as its main purpose should be to direct potential listeners to where they can tune in, but you can also use it as an extra place for listeners to leave reviews. No matter what actually goes into the site, be sure to optimize the SEO of the site as well. If you follow great SEO standards for both the podcast as well as your webpage, you will increase the number of people that can find your podcast tenfold.
8. Invite guests onto your podcast
If there are other podcasters out there that are in the same space as you or even celebrities or influencers on the topic, try to invite them on! Especially if you’re asking other podcasters to come on, they may just request the same of you — so be ready and willing to join their show if they do for you. This is a great way to network in the industry and form relationships with other content creators. Networking is a skill that goes a long way in life both in the podcast industry and in all walks of life as well.
The worst they can say is no, but if you get some big names on your show, your listener count will skyrocket. If, for example, your podcast is about technology and artificial intelligence, imagine how much clout your show could get if you had an episode with Elon Musk. Once you get bigger, more people will be willing to come on the show, and you’ll just keep growing and growing.
9. Consider recording your podcasts using video rather than only audio
One of the easier ways to drive up the ranking of your podcast among search results is to record your show using video instead of only audio.
Search results will favor those shows with video as people often prefer to have the option to actually watch the show instead of only being able to listen.
Don’t think you need to go out and spend tens of thousands of dollars on a new studio to record in or anything. A decent camera, a simple backdrop, and a quality microphone can provide a great pseudo-studio that’s good enough to record your podcasts and draw in a larger audience.
10. Seek quality artists to create artwork for your podcast
One final tip for increasing your podcast rankings is to find quality artists to design artwork for your show. Ideally you may want to have episode-specific artwork done, but even just hiring someone to create a great logo can go a long way.
When people are searching for a new podcast to watch, one of the first things they’ll see is your podcast title right next to your logo or image. Hiring someone who specializes in creating logos or artwork can go a long way to catching the attention of potential listeners. Use the quality artwork to draw the audience in, and then use your quality content to keep them engaged.
Improving your podcast rankings is worth it in the end
Creating a great podcast that people want to listen to is not as easy as just picking a random topic every day and rambling on about your thoughts on it into a microphone. Who wants to listen to that?
The key to any successful podcast is to create a show with quality content that your audience will want to listen to and tell their friends about.
Once you’ve settled on a topic or range of topics that you are confident people will be interested in, go through all of the tips and hints on this page to improve your podcast rankings. Through podcast SEO, encouraging your users to review and rate the show, promoting your podcast, and more, you’ll see your podcast rankings shoot through the roof compared to where it was before.
It’s a lot of hard work to create a podcast that’s worth listening to and has a consistent audience while generating great reviews, but it’ll be worth it in the end when your show is at the top of the search results and you’re able to share your opinions with the world.