This is going to be fun! I was asking my friends, and also the team, what I should podcast about. I needed some fresh ideas. If you want to submit some ideas, you can submit them in our Facebook group or submit a SpeakPipe question and tell me what you want me to do a podcast on at stefaniegass.com/thepodcast.
One of my friends said, “Tell us the five worst ways to title your podcast episodes.” Yes, this will be so much fun! So we’re going to go through five things you should not do when you are podcasting. Honestly, these five will work when it comes to your email subject lines or any content you create. These are don’ts that work across the board but are definitely pertinent to podcasting.
My name is Dr. Desiree and I host the Balanced Momtality Women’s Health & Wellness podcast, which is insane to say. If you would have asked me a couple of months ago if I would ever launch a podcast, the answer would have been a big, fat no. But Stef kept showing up in my world and I felt this strong urge to start a podcast. I took a leap of faith and purchased PPU, binged it, and launched a podcast in 30 days. My launch was successful with the help of Stef and her team with over 200 downloads and 30 written reviews. I even made it to #35 in the US, which I am so proud of! Thanks, Stef, for all you do and for helping us in our own journey.
Desiree, I’m so excited for you! Friends, that corner of the internet you’re supposed to impact, those clients God has for you, and those listeners are waiting. Podcasting is the way. If you have been led to this show, I believe it is Divine intervention that you’re at least supposed to consider starting a podcast.
Like Desiree, I can help you get it done. If you’re new and unsure if podcasting will ever work, I want you to head to podcastforgrowth.com. And if you are like, “Heck, yes, I’m all in!” I want you to go to stefaniegass.com/school and join me in Podcast Pro University to get that show launched or join me in Podcast to Profit which is my 6-month group coaching mastermind for podcasters. If you want to scale, grow, get visible, and create that offer that’s actually going to sell and you want to do it with a team, everything you need is at stefaniegass.com/school.
Podcast Episode Titles: The Wrong Way
Grab a notebook and pen. Whether you have a podcast or not, this is going to help you prepare for the day you do have a podcast because, friend, you can’t hang out with me too long without me completely changing your mind. I double-dog dare you to never start a podcast!
No. 1: Do Not Use Too Many Clickbait Titles
I love a good triggering title and I sprinkle them in strategically. But if we use too many of those clickbait-y type titles that don’t actually tell you what’s inside of the episode, it can lead to frustration and disappointment on the part of your listener. And potentially turn off your audience.
We don’t want to make people feel like we’re misleading them if we use these clickbait podcast episodes too often. An example of a clickbait episode would be: “This One Strategy Will Create a 6-figure Business.” I think this is okay sparingly, but be mindful not to use this too often or you’re going to be seen as clickbaiting your audience. I would say you use a title like this one out of every ten. Maybe one out of every 15 episodes.
No. 2: Do Not Create Overly Long Episode Titles
It’s okay to be descriptive, and you’ll learn inside Podcast to Profit (my mastermind program), how to strategically build a podcast episode title that includes podcast SEO and something I’ve coined as ‘focus phrases,’ what those mean, and how to implement them. You’ll learn how to structure a title like, “Where does this go versus that?” When do you use an identifier like ‘Christian Women’ or ‘Busy Mom?’ I will teach you all of those juicy components, but one thing I can tell you right now is that overly long titles are actually hurting you. This is because people have an 8-second attention span.
Avoid making them too long or too confusing. Don’t list a bunch of stuff with commas. Not only is it difficult to read, but it’s also hard to remember. I tell my students if you just made me think about what you said, and it’s not immediately clear to me what I’m getting, I’m out. Just keep it to one main component, one main promise for your title, and cut out any filler words.
For example, this title is too long – “How to Build a Routine Stack in Your Mornings So You Can Get More Done in Less Time as a Busy Mom.” It’s a great title, but it’s too long. If we want this episode to be more punchy, it can simply be, “Build a Morning Routine Stack and Get More Done.” Do you see how much more clear that is? We don’t need to add in all the rest. Keep it to the point, punchy is always best. Cut out any extra identifier if it doesn’t fit into the core message.
No. 3: Avoid Using Offensive, Political, or Derogatory Language
Unless you have a political podcast, just avoid it. It’s okay to be moderately polarizing, especially if you’re trying to cater to a certain audience, but if you come across as offensive, it’s really not a good look. I think you end up pushing more people away than you end up drawing in.
Avoid using offensive and derogatory language. It can be seen as unprofessional. People have hit me up to be a guest on my show and if they have the explicit tag, I have to pass. Even though I may love their content, I have chosen not to have that on my podcast. You are probably going to lose some opportunities if you choose that too.
Again, if it’s part of your brand or method, go for it. I think, for the majority of people, you will want to avoid this in your podcast episodes – anything with name-calling, straight-up cursing, or something that could be super polarizing and would create divisiveness in the audience you’re trying to cultivate, just skip it.
No. 4: Do Not Use Irrelevant or Unrelated Titles
Make sure your podcast episode titles accurately reflect what’s inside the episode. Don’t use a title that’s partially related or a title that’s completely confusing once they start listening. I’m kind of guilty of this one. The team will say, “Stef, you said six steps, but inside the episode, you said three.”
Here’s an example: “Interview with Mary Jean from Fit Club” First of all, it’s not a good title because it doesn’t tell me why I should care who Mary Jean is and I don’t know what Fit Club is. It should be about your listener not about what happened. Let’s say you’re talking about how Mary Jean grew her business, not the fact that she’s in Fit Club and it’s irrelevant that it’s an interview. A better title would be: “How Mary Jean Grew a 6-Figure Business in Under 24 Months” or “How Mary Jean’s Brick and Mortar Gym Became a 6-Figure Business in 24 Months.”
The title should show why your audience should care and why it matters what’s inside the episode. Keep it super relevant and tactical to what’s inside.
No. 5: Avoid Using Titles That Are Too Generic
We talked about the titles that are unrelated, but now let’s talk about the titles that are too generic. For example: “Interview with John Smith” or “Discussion About Politics.” Those titles don’t provide much context or enticement for future listeners.
I want you to be creative. I want you to be specific. Make sure your podcast episodes stand out from other podcasts. Find that sweet spot of a short, punchy title that’s a little bit triggering, but not too much clickbait, that has beautiful podcast SEO, and contains focus phrases.
We go in-depth on these together in Podcast to Profit to find the right keywords and focus phrases, how we implement them, how we infuse them, how many we should have, and where they go; all of that is covered in its entirety. So if you have a podcast, go to podcasttoprofitmastermind.com to take a look around, check out the testimonies, and ask the team questions. This is a perfect next step for you if you’re asking yourself:
How do I optimize my show?
How do I make this work for me?
How do I actually make money from this podcast?
I promise you, Podcast to Profit has it all! I am so proud of it and I cannot wait for you to walk through this course with me.
Recap of the Worst Ways to Title Your Podcast Episodes
Don’t use too many clickbait titles.
Avoid overly long titles.
Avoid offensive, political, or derogatory language unless that is your brand.
Do not use irrelevant or unrelated titles.
Don’t use titles that are too generic.
I hope this helped you focus in on what it is you’re trying to say in your podcast episodes and relay that message with clarity and consistency, being pointed, tactical, and punchy in your titles so you can get people to click, listen, subscribe, and ultimately, work with you.
Deuteronomy 31:8: The Lord, Himself, goes before you and will be with you. He will not leave you, nor forsake you. Don’t be afraid. Do not be discouraged.
The Lord is beside you. Keep shining; keep showing up. He won’t leave your side. He won’t forsake you. Everything you are doing matters.
The more I get to know my students and the more I participate in masterminds with my peers the more I’m starting to comprehend the overarching problem and prevalence of one, perfectionism, and two, overthinking.
Perfectionism keeps us in a place of constant consumption and learning. Redoing things over and over and thinking that we can’t move forward until they measure up to some elusive standard.
Why do I believe we need a morning routine? I believe you must have a morning routine because it helps you get into the mindset of productivity and purpose.
When we get right with God we: Renew Our Minds
Get Into the Word
Are Able to Live Our Life Guided by the Holy Spirit
The difference in how my day goes when I do my morning routine and when I don’t is night and day.