Podcast, Getting Started, Guide, Marketing, Branding

How to Select a Podcast Title

Choosing a podcast title is no simple task. Your podcast title appears in front of all listeners, meaning the title you pick will leave an impression. Since your title actually has a large impact on the success of your podcast, settling on the first title you come up with could have quite a detrimental impact on your podcast. So, to help you out with the process of selecting a podcast title, we created a guide below. Check it out!


Why is My Podcast Title Important?

There are a few reasons that your podcast title is important. Firstly, your title is very closely related to your podcast's discoverability, so an over-complicated title means a podcast that is hard to discover. For example, consider if someone uses a voice assistant, like Amazon Alexa, to listen to your podcast and they can not get their chosen voice assistant to understand the name of your podcast. Or, perhaps a listener is telling a friend about your podcast and their friend does not understand the name. In both of these instances, you are unknowingly and unintentionally making it harder for people to listen to your podcast.

Additionally, your podcast title is important because your title is ultimately part of a potential listener's decision to listen. Note that your title, as well as the other information and images that appear with your title, can make all the difference, especially if a listener is deciding between your podcast and another one on a similar topic. If your podcast title is confusing, doesn't communicate the right message about your podcast, is boring, etc., then potential listeners may leave without ever listening.

With all that said, your title is clearly crucial to the success of your podcast. Although it may seem frivolous, you should really put some time and effort into deciding your podcast title. While you might not necessarily notice the benefits of a great title, you will certainly notice the detrimental impacts of a bad title. So, it is best to be informed about podcast titles and carefully make your selection, instead of settling for just anything that you can think of.


Qualities of a Great Podcast Title:


Informative

Making sure that your title is informative should be a priority. Having a title that tells potential listeners what to expect from your podcast, specifically making your niche known, is extremely helpful for drawing in your target audience. Things you may want to convey in your title could include your topic, target audience, personality and/or background, and so forth. Note that if your focus is more on creativity, you should still ensure that your podcast title is appropriate for your topic.

A great way to make a descriptive title is to include one or two keywords that convey your topic. Keywords are helpful in making your title communicate clear information, and they help with SEO and rankings on directories. While creating an informative title, be careful not to lose out on creativity though. A strictly informative podcast title can turn potential listeners away if they deem the title boring or uninspiring. And, you can always help out your SEO and directory rankings by inserting keywords in titles, descriptions, tags, and repurposed content.

Tips:

  • You should not add keywords to the end of your title (ie. "Podcast Name | Keyword, Keyword, Keyword") as directories may remove your podcast for "keyword stuffing."
  • Adding "Podcast" into your title is most likely unnecessary unless your podcast is on the topic of podcasting.
  • Using your name in your title is not ideal unless you already have a reputation and following.

Unique

You should aim to have a unique title to make your podcast stand out from the crowd and to ensure you aren't engaging in trademark infringement by using someone else's podcast title.

Some things that can help you create a unique, but informative title are references to your ethos, culture, and/or values as a podcast brand and as a host. Thinking about different common phrases that are used around your niche can also make for a great starting point. Additionally, playing with tone can be a good way to make your descriptive title more interesting. Your podcast title can reflect your tone as a host, which, when chosen carefully, can make your title more personal and memorable.

It is possible to get too creative with your podcast title though, especially if you are starting your podcast with no reputation or existing audience that follows your work. An abstract or overly unique title would not communicate anything about your podcast topic or your podcast generally, meaning potential listeners would likely scroll on by because they have no idea what the title means. Remember that ambiguity is most likely not your friend when it comes to your podcast title.


Comprehensible

You should remember that having a unique title does not mean that you should have an over-complicated title that is confusing, hard to say or understand, or vague. Having an over-complicated title will negatively impact your podcast's growth. If potential listeners can't understand your title, you might lose out on listeners. Focus on creating a title that is easy to spell as well as easy to pronounce.


Minimal

Lastly, your title should be minimal and thus easy to remember. A long title makes everything more difficult in terms of discoverability, so try to aim to have a title that is about four syllables or less with no extraneous letters, numbers, etc. As with any of the other qualities of a title, you don't want to overdo it and create a title that is too brief to the point it conveys almost nothing though.


How to Select a Podcast Title:


Brainstorming

Brainstorming is key. Take some time to brainstorm unique podcast titles, but evaluate how understandable any of your options are before making a decision. Think about what you want to be known for, what you want your title to convey, who you want your podcast to appeal to, what makes your podcast different, how straightforward or creative you want your title to be, and so forth. This would be a good time to write out your thoughts and ideas about titles and your podcast more generally. Seeing things written down is very different than saying them, so you should jot down your podcast title ideas. Remember that ultimately you are looking for a balance between creativity and simplicity, both visually and aurally.

Whatever you do, don't rush your brainstorming process. Think about getting a few friends or family together that you think understand your podcast vision best and have them contribute to your brainstorming. You might also consider searching synonyms to keywords or checking out books, blogs, and podcasts in your niche to gain inspiration.


Feedback

In coordination with brainstorming, you should ask for feedback from friends and family. Ask them to tell you what they think the podcast is about and what their first thoughts are upon hearing the title(s). More in-depth feedback is certainly helpful, but the most important feedback is the initial reactions since that will mimic the first impressions that potential listeners will have. It is also helpful to ask for feedback as to whether your title is unique, but still comprehensible.

You should also check to see if your preferred title is already taken by another podcast by checking with a Google search as well as on various directories. If you use someone else's podcast title, even unknowingly, you could be engaging in trademark infringement, which is something you should do your absolute best to avoid. It's also important to check if your chosen podcast name is available as a domain name for a podcast website, as well as on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and other social media platforms. You want consistency across the internet to help out with SEO, so you should prioritize selecting a podcast name that you can use as a domain name and usernames on social media.

Now would also be a good time to check out the search engine results and evaluate where you could potentially rank eventually with some work.


Selection

After narrowing down your options through brainstorming and feedback as well as making adjustments where needed, you need to pin down what title fits you and your podcast. You might consider making a pros and cons list if you have multiple options. If you are left with one title after moving through the process, it could still be helpful to write down any challenges you anticipate regarding your podcast title. This will be extremely helpful as you move through your podcasting journey because you will be ready for any hiccups related to your title so that you can hopefully avoid them, or, at the very least, quickly and easily handle them.

Note that if you feel any hesitation about a name, that is likely a sign that it is not right for you. Don't worry about time. If it takes several weeks to decide on a name, then so be it.


Selecting your podcast title should be a process that you move through with intention and care. While it may take a decent bit of time and effort, you will find that the time and effort spent will absolutely be worth it in the end. And, if you skip through the podcast title selection process quickly and carelessly, you will see the negative impacts. That is why we recommend taking the process seriously and really finding the title that is perfect for your podcast. Happy podcasting!


Note that if you have an existing business, blog, website, or other career-related endeavor, you should use that branding for your podcast to keep things consistent. Even if your existing branding doesn't make for a great podcast title, try to think of derivatives of your branding that could make for a great title to still keep things relatively consistent, or at least related.


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Article Image: fancycrave1 via Pixabay.

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About Michelle Ruoff

  • Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania