Improving your SEO performance often comes down to creating content. Things like blogs, videos, and webinars are great for drawing more visitors to your website and boosting your rankings on search engines.
But creating content is a lot of work. Unless you can afford to outsource or hire a team, it’s difficult to find the time for it. With all the other tasks required to keep your business running smoothly, content usually gets pushed down the list of priorities.
But what if you could reap the SEO benefits of content creation with just a fraction of the work? It almost sounds too good to be true. But that’s exactly what being a guest on podcasts allows you to do.
Below we’ve outlined the key ways guest podcasting can enhance your rankings and boost your brand’s online visibility.
Get More Backlinks
Backlinks are links from one website to a page on another website. Google and other search engines consider backlinks “votes” for a specific page. They signify that the page being linked to is noteworthy and likely to be of interest to others. As a result, pages with a high number of backlinks tend to have high SEO rankings.
The more backlinks pointing towards your website, the more visible it will be on Google. So it makes sense to get as many as you can. That’s why guest blogging is so popular. In exchange for an original article, you get rewarded with a new backlink to your website.
But writing original content for different websites is extremely time consuming. It typically takes more than five hours to produce a single high-quality guest blog (sometimes much longer).
Guest podcasting offers a much easier approach. You don’t have to write anything. Simply show up, share your expertise, and use the results to generate more attention for your brand. While being a podcast guest does take up some time, it’s considerably less than what it takes to create content from scratch.
Each podcast you appear on generates new backlinks to your site. Most podcast hosts post show notes on their website to accompany each episode. As in the example below, both you and your business will be tagged in the content for your episode, and those links will help boost your SEO performance.
Backlinks from podcasts that have been running for years are worth more than those from newly established podcasts. But getting on bigger podcasts tends to be more difficult.
We’d advise starting off by appearing on newer/smaller podcasts first before building your way up to more established podcasts with larger audiences. The hosts of big name podcasts will be more likely to have you on as a guest if you’ve already done lots of other appearances.
Drive Referral Traffic
Unless you appear as a guest to talk about news and current events, podcast show notes are evergreen. The content doesn’t have an expiration date and will always be accessible online to anyone interested in learning more about the topic you discussed.
This means in addition to the spike you’ll see when the episode is first published, you’ll also benefit from a steady trickle of referral traffic. The backlinks in the show notes will be available to click on for as long as the page remains live. This means podcasts you appeared on years ago can continue to benefit your SEO performance.
For example, when someone discovers a podcast for the first time, they’ll often go through the back catalogue to find old episodes they’re interested in. As a result, the footprints you leave in the show notes will continue to serve you for years.
Referral traffic from each individual podcast is usually quite low. But when you add it up across 50 guest appearances, it can really make a difference month over month.
Keep Visitors on Your Website For Longer
Alongside backlinks, dwell time is another factor that influences SEO rankings. It refers to the average length of time visitors spend on a given page. The longer they stay, the higher the ranking. A longer dwell time basically signals to Google that people find the content on the page engaging and useful.
Embedding the audio from your guest appearances on your website is a great way to get visitors to stay longer. Visitors can skim written content in seconds or watch quick explainer videos in minutes before bouncing to another site. But podcast episodes encourage them to stick around much longer, often for more than 20 minutes.
For example, at Podcast.co we found dwell times on some of our most popular blog posts increased significantly when we added audio versions of the content to the top of the post. This helped boost our rankings across a range of important keywords.
Create Additional Content Quickly
Every podcast you appear on can be repurposed into different formats and posted to your own website. Here are a few different ways you can recycle your interviews:
Blog Posts: Write long form, evergreen articles based on topics you discussed in the interview. If you discussed several different topics, you’ll be able to create multiple blogs from one appearance. Using part of the episode transcript will help speed the writing process up. And don’t forget to embed the full-length episode at the top of each post!
Social Media Posts: Generate a series of tweets or social media posts based on quotable content from the interview. You can post them as plain text or convert them intro images like the example below. Generally speaking, images tend to get more engagement.
Videos/Audiograms: Extract audio from your podcast appearance, pair it with an image and turn it into a 15 to 60-second video highlight clip to share across your social media channels. Not sure how? Here's an article that can help you.
Creating content this way is much quicker than doing it from scratch. And the more meaningful content you have on your site, the better your SEO performance will be. For a more in-depth look at other ways you can repurpose your interviews, check to our conversation with content repurposing expert Amy Woods.
More Social Media Engagement
The more followers and engagement on your social pages, the better they’ll perform in SEO rankings when someone searches for you or your business.
Podcast hosts are always eager to promote their episodes, and they'll usually tag you in their posts. Most hosts also have separate pages for their podcast and personal accounts, increasing the exposure you’ll get.
While the posts are usually exactly the same on each account, they’re going out to two potentially different audiences. This gives you even more exposure, helping to funnel more visitors to your social pages.
Don’t leave everything to the host though. Share the episode link on your own social media pages, tagging them back. Also make sure to interact with any fans who comment on the posts, either on your page or the host’s page. Over time this will help build up your follower counts.
Using MatchMaker to Book Podcast Guest Slots
To start improving your SEO through guest podcasting, you need bookings. Lots of them. Creating a profile on MatchMaker.fm is the easiest way to find guest slots. MatchMaker is an online booking service that matches podcasters with ideal guests. So if you’re looking for opportunities, all it takes a few clicks to find them.
Podcast.co & Radio.co founder James Mulvany used MatchMaker to get booked on 30 podcasts in 30 days. And in the video below he walks you through his process step by step so you can do the same.
Compared to cold pitching, MatchMaker has a much higher success rate. As long as your initial outreach message is on point, you’ll have no problem lining up your first run of bookings. Remember, every appearance equates to a new, high-quality backlink for your website, plus all the other additional benefits discussed above.
How to Impress Listeners
Getting booked is great. But the work doesn’t end there. During the interview, you need to wow listeners. And that takes preparation.
Unless you’ve been interviewed hundreds of times before, you can’t just “wing it”. If you go in unprepared, you’re probably going to end up fumbling over words or give boring generic responses. Remember, you have one chance to impress the audience and make them remember your name. So don’t take it for granted.
Don’t turn your guest appearances into sales pitches for your business. That’s not what audiences want to hear. If you launch into aggressive self-promotion, listeners will switch off immediately. Instead, work with the host to ensure your messaging sounds natural and timely - while still making it clear you have something to sell.
Think about the kinds of questions the host is likely to ask you and write them down. Then practice your answers so they’re tight and crip and deliver your message clearly. Try to think of any relevant stories or anecdotes you could use to illustrate your point. People tend to retain information better when it’s presented in narrative format.
If you impress, a portion of the audience will be keen to check you up elsewhere. So make sure you end each appearance with a clear call-to-action telling listeners exactly what you’d like them to do - whether that’s to follow you on Twitter, pre-order your book, or visit your website for a free guide. Most hosts will tee up this opportunity for you with a question like “How can people find out more about you?”
If you want to improve your SEO rankings, but haven’t got time to create content from scratch, being a podcast guest is a great alternative.
In addition to all the SEO benefits, you’ll also have the opportunity to get in front of your target audience for free. So it's a no-brainer really.
No matter what your area of expertise, someone will have created a podcast about it. The diversity in podcasting’s long-tail makes the medium a powerful tool for getting your message out to the right people.