The Ultimate Style Guide for Publishing Podcast Transcripts
When you think of a podcast, what comes to mind? Do you picture sitting around a table of microphones, recording yourself and a guest? Then you upload the audio file to your website and iTunes and watch as millions of downloads come in? Unfortunately, it’s not that simple. Having a podcast is so much more than just uploading an audio file. To really optimize your podcast, and to get the most out of your podcast content, it’s imperative to post the transcription of the recording as well.
Creating a podcast takes a lot of work. You have to think of a show name and theme. Then you’ve got to find the right audio equipment for your podcast. Then, of course, there’s the actual recording process, followed by post-production work, including editing, marketing, and audience engagement. All of that takes time and energy.
Why wouldn’t you want to get as much content out of each podcast episode as possible, to benefit your web presence and increase the reach of your audience?
Luckily, you don’t have to go it alone. We’ll walk you through exactly how to utilize your podcast transcripts, so you’re able to make a bigger impact with your audio content this year – and beyond.
What are the Biggest Benefits of the Transcription of Audio Files?
There are several key benefits to transcribing your audio content. For one, you’re assisting hard-of-hearing followers. In the U.S. alone, approximately 15 percent of people report some form of hearing trouble. A transcript can make those audience members feel more at home when following your episode. You’re also improving your podcast’s presence online – more people can find you and listen to your show. Finally, transcribing your podcast allows for a super accessible version of your podcast interviews. Do you need to use a quote for a quick social graphic? Or offer some insight from a guest with your email newsletter? You have that content at your fingertips, making it easy to share across platforms.
Here are some additional benefits of having a transcription of audio files.
Improved Search Engine Optimization
It’s incredibly beneficial to have your audio files in a written format on your website for SEO purposes. With SEO, or search engine optimization, search engines crawl for content and then rank those websites based on how helpful they are to visitors.
SEO is an ever-changing animal. What worked well in the past may not work so well now. Before, it was all about littering your article with keywords. That’s still part of the equation, but nowadays, links and strong content play a major role, too.
Luckily, since your podcast is filled with great content, that shouldn’t be an issue. By transcribing your audio, that helpful content will help your site rank higher on Google, Bing, Yahoo, and other search engines. Moreover, those specific terms, keywords, and links can all help your podcast content thrive.
The Ability to Digest Podcast Content in Another Way
Many hearing-impaired listeners can still enjoy your podcast content if you provide a transcription of it. One in eight people aged 12 or older in the U.S. has hearing loss in one or both ears. There are also people (about five percent of children) that experience Auditory Processing Disorder (APD). People with APD have difficulty recognizing subtle differences between sounds in words. They can also find it challenging to comprehend the order of sounds or to block out other background noise. Those audience members can digest your podcast much more smoothly if you provide a transcription of audio files.
Having a Super Accessible Version of Your Interviews
By transcribing all of your audio recordings and podcast episodes, you’ll have written, convenient versions of all of your guest interviews, readily available when you need them. Being able to quickly reference your interviews can help with future marketing efforts, such as referencing experts for social media statuses, email newsletters, and more. It’s also helpful for expanding your knowledge – you may remember that a guest shared something insightful during a podcast recording. Rather than digging through an hour (or more) of an audio file, you can quickly and easily locate that part of the interview within your transcription.
Key Tips to Publishing Podcast Transcripts
Much like how there’s more to publishing an episode than simply uploading it to your site, there’s more to publishing podcast transcripts than just dumping all the text onto a page. Be sure to format the content in a way that’s helpful to the user.
For example, make sure you spell all the names mentioned in the podcast episode correctly. This is especially critical if you’re planning to share the content across your audiences and platforms – you don’t want to misattribute a quote! If you have multiple speakers in your episode, you’ll want to indicate anytime someone else is speaking in the text. It helps your audience follow along with the flow of the conversation.
Make sure any interruptions in the audio, such as outside noises, sound effects, or music are listed for the reader. Maybe there was a motocross event outside your recording studio for ten minutes, and you went to investigate. That’s a fun diversion – let everyone enjoy it! If you do use a song, identify it by name, band, and/or song title.
Here are a few other style tips to consider when publishing your podcast transcript:
A general rule of thumb is to add a line break every time a new person talks. You’ll write their name, a colon, and then what they said. It doesn’t matter if it’s a one-word response or a six-minute monologue – this format is universally recognized and easy to follow.
When a new person or character comes into the podcast, they may not always be immediately named. Having some form of identification helps your audience keep tabs on who’s saying what. Similarly, if you’re narrating a story in a nonfiction podcast, you might reference and use a soundbite from a person before saying their name. In that case, you can use a descriptor like “worker” until you’ve introduced them. Again, use a line break between each name and unidentified voices.
Unless you happen to be writing some prose that requires a stream of consciousness portion – think Toni Morrison’s Beloved – you want your content to be easy to read. Use proper grammar and punctuation to keep a good flow for your audience.
Patterns of Speech
Does one of your hosts sometimes stammer or false start when they speak? Don’t take that away from your transcript. It can enhance the overall ambiance of your show’s transcription.
Characters and Accents
Do you have a character that makes appearances throughout your show? Do you break out a posh British accent when discussing news from London? Include that information in your transcription so your readers can follow along. Use a line break between each character, as well.
Now that you know how to make your podcast transcription smooth and polished, the next question is a matter of where to post it.
Where Should You Post Podcast Transcripts Online?
In addition to your website, there are several areas where you can leverage your podcast transcription notes. It’s critical to take advantage of using your podcast transcriptions in as many places as possible. Not only will you maximize your audience by casting a wider net with your content, but you’ll also improve your SEO online.
Here are some great starting ideas for where to post your transcription notes:
- Your blog or website. This is the perfect place to start posting your transcriptions. Ideally, you’re already sharing your episodes to your blog and website, so this is the logical next step. You can embed the player for your podcast and then feature the show notes and transcript right underneath for your audience, so they can easily keep up with your episodes.
- Social media profiles. Beyond sharing excerpts of your transcripts on your profiles and pages, you can take advantage of things like Facebook groups and LinkedIn groups to share your transcripts. These are areas where you’ve already got like-minded individuals’ attention, and you can post long-form content that others can easily share across those platforms.
- Tumblr. Tumblr is an online platform that has a wide variety of uses. Sure, some Tumblr profiles exist strictly to share silly images and gifs, but many also share great written content. That can include your podcast transcription; Tumblr is also a very visual platform, so you can take a portion of your transcript and make an eye-catching image out of a couple of lines or paragraphs to go along with your longer-form transcript.
- Podcast message boards. There are lots of places where podcasters congregate. You can post your transcript in online networking groups like Meetup, or on specific podcast forums – Blubrry, for example, has a thriving, engaged community. Be sure to interact with users beyond merely posting your transcripts, though. Keep a nice mix of non-promotional content alongside your posts about your podcast, and you’ll do just fine.
- Email newsletters. Do you send out newsletters to your email list with updates on what you and your company have been up to? Why not use that opportunity to share your podcast with a broader audience? Your readers can easily forward the content along, potentially earning you tons of new subscribers.
- YouTube. Take your transcripts one step further and create a video of your podcast being recorded, then post the video to YouTube. In the video description, you’ll include that episode’s transcript. Even if you don’t want to film yourself, you can upload a video with pictures or your show logo that play alongside the audio. Search engines also crawl YouTube, Vimeo, and other video playback sites, so having your transcript there can be a big help.
When you’re posting your transcript, you can create bit.ly links for your site to easily share content across platforms. It’s also not recommended to include your entire transcript within your episode’s description. That can make it cumbersome for your audience to download your show and read your notes, especially on a mobile device.
Now that you’ve got your list of locations to post your transcripts, the next step is finding the best podcast transcription service to use.
How Using the Best Podcast Transcription Service Can Set You Up for Success
Rather than trying to do everything by yourself, it pays to work with a professional team, like Rev. They’ll help you take care of your podcast transcription needs so you can focus your time and energy on other aspects of your show, like creating great content and finding terrific guests. By posting your transcription and notes in several places online, you’re engaging a wider audience and impacting more people. That new audience? They’re helping you get your money’s worth from your transcription, and then some.
Getting started with Rev is a breeze. Just upload your audio file and within 12 hours (two hours for a rush job) Rev’s team of professionals will have a transcript ready to go for you in the file format you prefer. Services start at just $1.25 per audio minute – even with multiple speakers – so it’s affordable no matter the size of your business.
It’s time to grow your audience. Check out the Rev transcription services page and get started today.