12 Podcasts Doing Transcription the Right Way
No matter how strong the content of your podcast is, if you’re not transcribing it, you’re missing out on maximizing its reach. Offering multiple ways to consume an episode is a must. Here’s why transcriptions should be a part of your podcast gameplan:
- Improve SEO: People will come across your episode while searching for key terms. And if your content is good, they’ll stick around for more.
- Provide a place for backlinks: It’s much easier to reference a podcast and link back to a transcribed version of it. People can still listen to the whole episode, but if they only have a few free minutes, they can cite a certain section.
- Allow everyone to access your content: People who are deaf, hard-of-hearing, nonnative speakers, or suffer from auditory neuropathy spectrum disorder may have trouble following a fast conversation. Transcriptions provide an avenue for them to absorb everything you’re putting out.
- Build thought leadership: You’re saying great things on your podcast – maybe even quoteworthy things! If your thoughts are already written out, it’s that much simpler for someone to quote you. Even better, you’re getting a referral from another industry leader anytime you’re quoted.
Move Your DNA has three cool features that make for a very easy transcript viewing experience. First, they have a tab on their site dedicated solely to podcast transcripts. Rather than searching for an individual episode, listeners can find everything in one spot. Second, each transcript has a summary of the episode’s sections and an interactive ability to jump to a different time within the episode. Finally, to quickly distinguish between interviewer and subject, host Katy Bowman’s text is bolded.
This American Life has been transcribing its podcasts for years – and it shows. The transcriptions are sleek and easy to read, broken up into the episode’s different “acts.” Indenting the guests’ paragraphs to differentiate their words from those of host Ira Glass’s is a nice touch.
Much like This American Life, S-Town – from Serial – has all the subtle bells and whistles you’d expect from the brand. A gorgeous landing page directs the audience to scroll down for additional chapters, and each transcript lists the speaker’s full name every time they appear, which prevents the need for backtracking.
Here’s another benefit of podcast transcripts – you can use them to drive listeners to other website features. The fascinating Brain Science podcast offers its podcast transcripts for the modest fee of $1-$2. However, premium subscribers (at $4.99 a month) get free access to every podcast transcript. It’s a great way to get additional subscribers.
Freakonomics has sold more than five million copies in 40 languages, and the podcast has been a major success, too. Having a very accessible transcript certainly doesn’t hurt. Guest quotes are placed in easily digestible boxes and a list of additional resources about the episode are listed at the bottom of each episode page.
Host Sarah Enni interviews some of the greatest writers in the young adult and KidLit categories. Each transcript features links to the author’s works and other helpful resources, and the podcast even has a searchable spreadsheet to find just what you’re looking for.
Hosted by real Londoner Luke Thompson, Luke’s English Podcast features all sorts of fun facts and educational bits of the English language. It’s also a tremendous source of information about London and the U.K. You’ll learn something new when you listen, and you can quiz yourself when you read the transcript.
A podcast from LinkedIn and Medium cofounder Reid Hoffman, Masters of Scale is America’s first podcast to commit to an even gender balance between its guests. You’ll get a lot of inspiring and educational business thoughts, and the fully downloadable transcripts ensure you can pull them up anytime you need ‘em.
A supernatural fictional podcast, Mabel’s website is quite simple. But it doesn’t need to be flashy – it captures listeners (and readers) with its engaging story. And if you can’t read right at the moment, you can download episodes to check out later.
Host Angela Watson has nearly a decade of experience as a K-12 instructional coach, and each episode tackles a specific school topic. Her teaching ability is reflected in her episode transcripts which are gorgeous. Angela includes resources, breaks up the text with pictures, and summarizes key points from the episode. All of that leads to an ‘A’ in our book.
You can almost feel your troubles melting away as you read the transcriptions of Rachel Brathen’s podcast. The international yoga teacher, author, and speaker has a vibrant page that makes for stress-free viewing and even lets listeners know when someone breaks into song.
Everyone’s got a story to tell, and StoryCorps helps these folks get their voices out there. Each podcast is accompanied by clickable buttons to read the transcript, subscribe, or share the podcast. Certain episodes are also animated, and the transcriptions feature the names and artists of all songs used to help listeners discover new music.