There are a few things you have to do before publishing each podcast episode. A podcast summary is one of them. So what is a podcast summary? It’s honestly one of the most important aspects of podcasting that you’ll definitely want to master. A podcast summary, also known as a podcast show description, is a little blurb of text that explains to potential listeners what they can expect to listen to if they click on a certain episode from your show.

Your podcast summary is typically the second opportunity to encourage someone to tune in. First, they’ll see your title. If your title alone didn’t encourage them to click, the podcast summary is your next line of defense. It’s also typically the last chance you’ll have to earn a click to listen. So don’t underestimate the importance of drafting a powerful summary. An individual episode description can help you get more exposure and amplify your reach! And that’s why we believe they’re a key element in your podcast strategy. Below we’re talking podcast summaries. Specifically what you need to include in them in order to earn listeners. Keep reading to learn how to write your podcast description once and for all! 

How To Write A Podcast Summary

Get to the point right off the bat.

Let’s be honest, podcast directories are pretty crowded right now. And the statistics show that potential listeners have plenty of podcasts to choose from. So you need to lure them into your show real quick! Don’t waste time with unnecessary details like the episode number (especially if they’re usually in the episode titles) and filler words that only confuse whoever is reading the description. Avoid including information about your show overall, you as the podcast host, or your general podcast content. You also don’t need to rewrite the podcast episode title. Instead, try to talk about the topic of the episode right off the bat. The key takeaway from the show should be visible within the very first line! 

Remember, it’s a podcast summary, not a blog post.

Apple Podcasts allows a maximum of 4,000 characters for podcast show notes. Yet that doesn’t mean you should write a whole essay in your episode description! An incredibly long summary can feel overwhelming. We recommend sticking to under 1,000 characters per podcast summary. Be concise and keep things short and sweet! Remember, you want them to listen to your podcast rather than just read about it.

A strong description should include all the major topics covered in the episode.

The entire point of a successful podcast summary is to describe what the episode is about. You want to showcase the value you’re about to add to the episode to your specific target audience. If you are too vague, you’ll miss the precious chance to attract potential listeners. People go to the summary to get a better grasp of what you’ll talk about on the show. So choose 2 to 5 key points and write them down!

Allow the most important information to stand out.

People on the internet tend to scan content, even podcast summaries. So finding unique ways to get the most valuable information to stand out can be the defining moment for getting someone to tune in. We already mentioned putting the main focus of your episode in the first line. But throughout your summary, if there are super important points you think listeners are interested in, you can find a creative way to highlight them. Try putting important points as a list, own their own line, or use special characters to attract the eye to them. Encourage potential listeners to read the most important points in your summary.

If there’s a guest on that episode, introduce them.

You should always show appreciation for your podcast guests! Whenever you have a guest over on your show, tell potential listeners a bit about them in the podcast summary. Include their name, occupation, notable achievements, and the reason they’re on that particular episode. If the episode is just a straight-up guest interview, share a list of the interesting questions your guest answered. Or throw in a quote from the episode that you think will resonate with listeners. Also, see this post on how to find guests for your podcast

Don’t forget to include keywords to improve your SEO.

Keywords are the true magic of search engine optimization, AKA SEO. In past posts, we’ve mentioned you should include keywords in your podcast title and social media posts. But SEO also applies to podcast episode summaries! If you know how to do keyword research, great! If not, you can simply think of the words you would search for if you were searching for this kind of content. Make a list, then write them into your description. Make sure it flows instead of feeling too forced. 

Your podcast summary should feature at least one call to action.

Picture this: someone from your target audience listened to a random podcast episode and loved it, and now they want to stay up to date with your show. But you didn’t include a call to action in that episode’s description! That’s a missed opportunity for growing your reach on social media and maybe even your email subscription if you have one. So always link to your podcast’s website, mention your social media handles, and push people to subscribe to your email list in your episode summary.

Be honest with yourself and ask: Would the description make you listen to the episode?

Sometimes just an honest check-in with yourself is the best way to write a great podcast summary. Would your summary encourage you to click? Are you explaining the value a listener would gain from tuning in? Did you write a great podcast description that leaves them hanging so they feel like they have to hit play? Ask yourself if the podcast summary is enticing, and go from there!

What is your checklist for every podcast episode description?

Hopefully, this post is helpful for learning how to write an attention-grabbing podcast description! Remember, creating a podcast description just might be your last chance to convince listeners to tune in. It’s also an opportunity to encourage listeners to subscribe, share, and follow you for more.  For more tips on how to start a podcast, check out these podcast tips for beginners and these tips for how to launch your podcast! Also if you have any questions related to podcasting tips and tricks, leave them below! We’ll try to include your questions in future articles. We love to hear from you. And good luck writing those podcast episode summaries!