MD16: Podcast SEO The Unimaginable Way…Sort of
Doing iTunes or podcast SEO is just as important as taking care of your website’s search engine optimization for Google results. The difference is that you are optimizing your podcast to rank higher in iTunes search results.
The reason is that people search for problem solutions in iTunes just like they do in Google, and since you are going to be on this platform you might want to optimize your show for the best possible results don’t you think?
Here’s What You Will Learn About Podcast SEO:
Step 1 – Identify Keywords And Search Term (compare with competition)
Step 2 – Tools And Implementation of These Search Terms
Step 3 – How to Leverage Your Podcast Image For SEO
Step 4 – How to Leverage Your mp3 File For The Same Reason
Step 5 – Implementing Unsought off Tactics (even though they have not been proven)
Borja: We’re taking it solo today to talk about Podcast SEO: Episode 16. Let’s do it!
Welcome to the Money Diver Podcast. I am Borja Obeso, and week I bring you step-by-step actionable online marketing strategies that you can implement in your business to see the results fast. So let the diving begin.
Hey, what’s up, Divers? Welcome back to the show. As always, thank you so much for being here. We are taking it solo today because I’ve noticed a recent increase in the Money Diver audience and the Divers community of podcasters. And so for that reason, I wanted to create a podcast episode on SEO, on iTunes SEO and how to get your podcast to rank at the top of iTunes for the keywords on the key terms or search terms that you want to be ranking for. Now, if you haven’t created a podcast, because I’m assuming that if you’re listening today that you are, you have already created a podcast and are ready to launch or you have just launch. But if you haven’t, I recommend that you got to PodcastingTutorial.com. That is Pat Flynn’s free guide or free tutorial on how to create a podcast and get it ready to be launched on iTunes.
After you have that, you come over and learn all of these SEO tips. Now, you heard from Pat Flynn on Episode 2, so you know that you’re getting value from that guide as well. It’s extremely detailed and helpful. It has helped me a lot and a lot of other people as well. So the very first thing that a I recommedn that you do for your podcast SEO is figure out the terms that you want to be ranking for on iTunes because iTunes is a search engine just like Google. People search for problems, solutions on iTunes just like they do on Google. So you want to figure out what are those things, those words or terms that people are searching for on iTunes.
And the reason is specific to for iTunes, but you can use the Keyword Planner Tool by Google, which tells you what keywords and what search terms people are using on Google. And you can, because of that, you can figure out if, I mean, it’s very likely that if people are searching for those words on Google, they will also be searching for those words on iTunes. So just type in “Google keyword planner,” log into your AdWords account. If you don’t have an AdWords account, you can create it for free. It’s very simple, just as with any other Google type of account – Gmail, YouTube, et cetera – and go this keyword planner, search for terms that are related to your podcast, of course, and figure out what are some terms that have a lot of searches every month. Go forward to top searches. Don’t be afraid of the competition of Google because it’s not going to be the same on iTunes.
Just, you know, get a list of five to seven keywords that you want to be targeting. Write them down and then you are going to start implementing those keywords in all of the place that I’m going to be telling you right now. After you have a couple words, keywords, that you think are worthy, head on over to iTunes and search for those words to take a look at your competition to see if they’re, they are implementing these keywords. Take a look at how popular are these podcasts are. Take a look if they are implementing those keywords in their podcast title, in their author name, in their description. If they have those keywords in each of the episodes – not on each of the episodes, but in some of the episodes that have, they have published.
Now, after you listen to this whole episode, use each of these ranking factors or tips that I’m going to give you to see if your competitors are implementing them because chances are they’re not going to be implementing all of them and you can use that as a reference to decide how tough the competition is going to be. After you decide what words you’re going to be targeting, you want to download the PowerPress plug-in for WordPress. It is free. It is completely free to use. You can search for it on the WordPress repository of plug-ins. I use it; that’s why I recommend it. And that podcasting tutorial, I just recommend it. It’s also going to be good for figuring out and learning how to set up PowerPress, which is very simple. You can also search for it on Google. There’s going to be a ton of resources and guides on how to set up PowerPress.
Now, once you have steps one and two out of the way, you’re going to want to start implementing and including these words in the following places. The first place that you want to include these words is in your title, in the title, on the name of your podcast. Now, of course, you don’t have to name your podcast as your keyword, but you can do something like I do, like the “The Money Diver Podcast: An Online Marketing Podcast about Getting Traffic and Building Businesses Online,” et cetera. I include all of that small description on the title of my podcast. And you should do the same thing on your author name and of course in your description. And the way you can do it in your author name is something like, “Borja Obeso talks how to make the ultimate pizza, how to create an excellent pasta,” assuming if my podcast was about creating pizza and pasta. I don’t know why I’m talking about food so much. Actually, I do. I’m starving right now. I want to eat a pizza.
So yeah. Like I was saying, make sure you include those keywords in your title name, in your author name. Feel free to take a look at how I do it. Search for “The Money Diver Podcast” and take a look at how I include those words very elegantly in my title tags, my name, and my description. The way you can do it – and you should do it in your description – is make sure that you’re not over-optimizing it, even though I think I might be over-optimizing mine. But try to make it very organic. Remember that you’re talking to people, not just machines. Not just search engines and algorithms. So try to make it very natural in the way you include those terms, those keyword descriptions. However you want to call that. Also, when you are publishing every episode, if you’re using the PowerPress plug-in like I’m recommending you do, you have the, they give you the option to include a subtitle.
Now, I have no idea where this subtitle appears. I haven’t found it. But if they’re giving you the option, it’s because it’s used somewhere on the Internet – I don’t know where – and they say it’s for SEO as well. So for every episode, try to create a subtitle about what that episode is about. And that’s going to give you more options to include more words obviously about what their specific episode is covering. Now, moving forward with the elements of your show and how you can leverage each element for your SEO purposes. Your image is very important. Now, I want you to think as a developer. Now, I know that’s hard, but think as if you were a developer in charge of iTunes rankings, what would you use as a ranking factor? Because none of these tips have been proven. Some of them are obvious, like the amount of downloads that you get. That obviously plays a factor in your rankings. The amount of reviews that you get. I’m going to go into that a little bit later.
But none of these are 100% proven. So you have to think as a developer. If you were a developer working for iTunes in charge of those ranking factors, what would you implement? That’s what I did for some of the tips that I’m going to provide you later on in this show. So your image. Name your image as your most important keyword. You can even include some keywords in that image because if Google uses image names as a ranking factor, chances are iTunes does it as well. I don’t know how likely that is, but I just do it. You don’t lose anything doing that. You’re just covering your back. The same thing for your MP3 files. Name your MP3 files with the keyword that you’re targeting with each episode. Now, this is something that I have failed to do on most of my episodes, but simply because I forget. Plain and simple.
Now, another place where it would be ideal to include these keywords, but that is outside of your control, is in your reviews. The reviews that people leave for your show. Now, again, this is outside of your control. You can perhaps ask for a, ask your email list, your subscribers and followers. But then again, this is just going to come naturally. People are going to mention those words in the reviews naturally. And another factor relevant to your reviews is the votings – if people are voting for each other’s reviews inside the list of reviews that you get in iTunes. That could play a factor in your rankings. Again, it’s not been proven, but it’s something that could be used as a ranking factor. But then again, it’s outside of your control, so it doesn’t really count as a step that you should definitely follow here.
Now, a very important factor that is definitely on your control is the amount of subscribers that you get and the amount of downloads that you get. And this is achieved by promoting the heck out of your podcast. And there’s very effective ways of, to promoting your show in a way that is not spammy or pushy and I’m going to go into that right now. Now, one way that you can go on about promoting your show is by subscribing to Facebook groups, joining Facebook groups that allow you to introduce yourself to your, to the, sorry, to the rest of the members and mention your podcast. There’s a bunch of awesome podcasting Facebook groups. Now, don’t be promotional. Just, you know, you can even ask for permission. I run a Facebook group about podcasting which is called “Podcast Talks” and I allow people that ask permission to mention the name of their show, and that way, they get a lot of subscribers. I mean, not from my Facebook group specifically, but doing so in every Facebook group that you find out there. Again, make sure you’re not pushy, you’re not spammy, you’re not too much self-promotional.
You can also do native advertising to promote your show. This is the most powerful thing that I have done to promote my show. Now, native advertising could be a subject for an entire podcast episode on itself, but what it basically means is that you’re promoting content in a very natural way, in a way that blends in with the rest of non-advertising content. For example, you can promote your, you can pay to promote your podcast episodes, which is what I do, and use paper platforms like Google AdWords, Facebook ads and Twitter ads, and a bunch of other platforms that are out there, and make sure that you’re promoting to a very targeted audience.
Again, this will be a podcast episode on itself because there’s a ton of tips and tricks that go along with this to achieve low-cost advertisements. But, for example, one way that you can do is you can target as a keyword the name of your guests if you’re doing interviews in your podcast. The name of your guest on your, on Google AdWords, and chances are that not a lot of people are going to be bidding for those keywords, for those names. And this is the secret sauce for my podcast and I was afraid of giving out this secret, but, hey, I really want to make sure that everyone listening to this gets the most volume possible and the only way that I can achieve that is if I put myself out there, having no secrets. Just, you know, letting you know everything that I figure out, that I find out that works for me, even if it means that more of my competitors are going to implementing because, in the end, we’re all a community. We’re all a network of entrepreneurs and if we help each other, it’s going to be much more helpful than if we are out there alone because, as I have said many other times, this is a journey that can be very lonely, specifically if you’re doing it alone from home like I am and other people are.
So getting back to what I was talking about on native advertisements. Like I said, native advertising means that you’re creating your ad in such a way that it blends in with the rest of your content. A great place also for this is Facebook ads because you can promote your posts, but not as a “promoted post.” I know that sounds very weird, but go to the Facebook ad management platform and create a post from there instead of boosting a post that you have published directly from your page, which is another thing that Facebook allows you to do. Now, it might be scary to spend money on native advertisement, but I promise that it’s going to be much more cheaper than promoting other types of things that directly, like, directly promoting a product or a sales page because you’re providing a ton of value and Facebook is going to reward you for that and people are going to be much more likely to click your ads and read your content and listen to your podcasts because you’re not directly selling anything at that time.
So just experiment with it at least one dollar a day. Play around with it and I promise it has a great return on investment. Don’t be scared of it. People are going to love it and thank you for the value that you’re going to be providing. Always think of your audience. First, think of what they want to hear from you, what they want to listen from you, and they will reward you for that value. Another awesome place to promote your post as a native advertising strategy is Twitter ads, which allows you to create something they call “Twitter Cards” and promote Tweets that you send out to your followers. And you can, it’s just very good because you can target, again, if you have guests, you can target followers of your guests and they’re going to be familiar in, I mean, I advise that you include an image for a photo of, a picture of your guest in your card. That’s a reason why every one of my podcast episodes feature images, include the image of my guest is because when I promote my show, when I promote my episodes, I want that followers, my guest’s followers feel that connection to that image, that connection to that episode, and they will want to listen and click that ad a lot more than if it was a random image and a random title that they are not familiar with.
Again, I’m really sorry not to be more specific on how to actually set up a native advertising campaign. This could be and will be an awesome topic for a whole podcast episode and I will create it, I promise. Just make sure that you keep this in mind when promoting your show. Another obvious way that you should be using to promote your show is your email list. You might not have an email list, but if you do, it, I mean, I shouldn’t be saying this. It’s obvious that you have to promote your episodes to your email list. Otherwise, who are you providing value to? Who are you providing, who are you giving this awesome value that you are creating in your podcasts to if not your email subscribers? Now, moving forward with ranking factors comes reviews, which is very important. Reviews and subscriptions. And the way I control this is with contests. I give away a free membership to Smartduu.com, my WordPress providing business, in exchange of people’s honest reviews and subscribing to my show and answering to questions related to each of the episodes where I feature these contests on, and that has helped a lot with my reviews, my ratings, and the rankings on iTunes.
Just think of something that you can give away in your show, create a contest, and provide it to your, provide that product or that offer to your listeners in exchange of that engagement with your show. Now, I want to give you my last piece of advice for your iTunes rankings, and that is to link, to build that link to your iTunes podcast page. When you publish a podcast on iTunes, they will give you a unique page inside iTunes for your show. And again, this is something that hasn’t been proven yet, but like I was saying, if I were in charge of iTunes rankings, I would definitely consider the amount of backlinks that people’s iTunes page get because backlinks are like votes. People are voting for your page and they are making it. They are raising their hand and saying, “Yeah, I believe this is something worth taking a look at.”
So I haven’t seen anyone else recommend doing this. I have started doing this for sure. I promote and I try to build backlinks to that page as much as I do to my own websites and I believe it has helped a lot. In the three short months that I have been live on iTunes for the Money Diver Podcast, I have outranked a lot of people that have been doing podcasts on the same space that I have for the last three years. I have over 100 reviews in, again, in three short months. I’m extremely grateful for everyone listening that has left a review. I have no words to describe how grateful I am. So once again, guys, thank you so much for tuning in. I hope you enjoyed this episode. If you did, please let me know whether it is by sending me an email or sending me a Tweet to @Borjafat or leaving a comment at rebelgrowth.com/episode16. See you later. I hope you implement this. And as always, keep on diving!
Do you have any special strategy for your podcast SEO? I would love to know so feel free to share!