Last updated on October 8th, 2019
A podcast name should convey who you are and what the show is about in just a handful of words. It should be descriptive and creative, giving potential listeners a peak at what to expect as they dive into your latest episodes. On top of the creative hurdles, your podcast’s title must also consider a few technical components to ensure future listeners can discover the show.
With all this freedom in choosing a podcast name, we gathered six pieces of advice from our community to help you pick the right one. Keep these pearls of wisdom in mind as you brainstorm a list of perfect podcast names and ensure your show starts off on the right foot.
How To Pick A Podcast Title
As potential listeners browse Spotify or Apple Podcasts, you only have a few seconds to convey exactly what your show is about. Users will judge your show based on a thumbnail, a package of the podcast name complemented with quality cover art. This is the first impression that decides if your podcast is worth checking out.
Quickly and effectively describing your show’s tone, content, and personality is the most important factor to consider when naming a podcast. This is not the time to be ambiguous or unnecessarily crafty. Stay relevant to the topic and skip the names that require additional explanation to get your point across.
A word of caution, descriptive doesn’t always mean a lengthier title is better. Pacific Content analyzed over 650K show titles and found 75% of all podcast names are 29 characters or less. While you may have 225 characters to play with, focus on concise names for a stronger punch.
Consider the search-ability
Podcasts are part of the digital media world so how easily a show can be found via keyword searches affects audience growth. The “search-ability” of a podcast’s name speaks to its SEO value and if it will surface as a relevant result to a user’s query. Many directories reference a podcast’s title and author fields when deciding if your podcast is related to a user’s search. In order to increase the likelihood of your show appearing in these results, consider including the keyword potential listeners will use when looking for information about your topic.
However, don’t over do it. Called keyword stuffing, erroneously adding extra terms to your podcast title to game the system won’t do you any favors. Apple Podcasts is strict and will reject or remove your podcast if it suspects any foul play. Learn from the experiences of The Audacity to Podcast where host, Daniel J. Lewis, describes how his own podcast was dinged and how to avoid his mistake.
Think about word-of-mouth discovery
How many times has a friend suggested a new podcast you have to listen to? Word-of-mouth recommendations and marketing is an important piece of a successful show and something that can’t be glossed over. Think about how your listeners will talk about your podcast to their network. Think about if the name is difficult to spell, uses uncommon abbreviations, or is homonyms.
For example, say I have a weight loss podcast called Fifteen Lbs. To Go. It’s descriptive and concise but may cause problems for word-of-mouth recommendations. “Did you say fifteen or fifty?”, “Is the number spelled out or just one-five?”, “Oh, it’s L-B-S, not the word pounds?” are a few questions that will impact how easy it will be for the new listener to ultimately find my show.
As you consider ambiguity and your podcast name, try to reduce the obstacles between someone hearing about your podcast and how easy it is for them to type it out later on. You don’t want to miss out on engaging new listeners because they didn’t know how to spell the show’s title.
Do your homework on domain and social handle availability
We’re harping on how easy it will be for potential listeners to find your show because it’s crucial to your audience’s growth. Every successful show has a dedicated podcast website and social media accounts that are attached to the podcast’s name. As you brainstorm a list of podcast titles, do your homework to ensure the domain and social handles are available.
Avoid the headache of building out your show’s branding only to find you can’t secure the domain name because it already exists. Do Google searches, type the name into every podcast directory, and make sure it’s not already trademarked.
Have the perfect name but found another podcast with the same title? We suggest going back to the drawing board, even if the other show doesn’t appear to be too popular. You’ll avoid unnecessary marketing confusion and sidestep potential legal hassles, setting yourself up for long term success.
Say it out loud, a lot
Have you ever said a phrase so many times in a row that by the end every word sounds like gibberish? Your podcast name will become one of these phrases. Think of each episode’s introduction, the calls-to-action, or how often you’ll plug the podcast in day to day conversation. All in, you’ll say your show’s name a couple thousand times.
As your narrow down the list of options, say each out loud a lot. Say it over and over again and throw out the versions you don’t consistently, clearly deliver. Avoid stumbling phrases that are hard to say off the cuff, ones that don’t flow naturally for you, or that are difficult for others to repeat.
Once you’ve settled on a shortlist, now is the time to start asking for feedback from your network. Poll friends, family, or co-workers for their first impressions and reactions. It’s easy to get to miss glaring issues because you intimately understand what you want to convey. By assessing other’s honest opinions, you’ll gain critical feedback in your title’s shortcomings or wins.
This is also the perfect time to join podcast specific Facebook groups where members are fellow podcasters. Pose your options for constructive criticism from a community who understands the intricacies of naming a new show. These comments can help shine new light on names you thought were perfect or help revive ones that you already scraped.