Optimize your audio files to increase
their popularity, just as you would optimize a
website. Audio search engines are becoming more
advanced as audio files become more commonplace
on the Internet. Here are some tips to optimize
your audio offerings...
1. Optimize Landing Page
Create a landing page for the audio
files. The landing page should explain the audio
content and encourage subscriptions. Outline the
steps the visitor should take in order to subscribe
or listen to the audio file. Make an effort to
interact with the visitor on the landing page,
and make it as easy as possible for them to subscribe
or listen to your podcast.
2. Provide Online Player
Provide an online player so people
can sample a show or audio file. There are a number
of vendors that allow you to imbed audio players
into a website. Take a look at Wimpy Player for
example, to see a few different options for imbedding
an audio player into a webpage.
Wimpy - http://www.wimpyplayer.com/
3. Keyword In URL And File Names
When linking to the audio file,
use important keywords in the URL and in the audio
filename. If you use multiple words to link to
a file, hyphenate them. Search engine spiders
take notice of file names, so rather than using
a random numerical sequence, give the audio file
a meaningful filename that relates to the content
contained in it.
4. Optimize Audio Files
Optimize the actual audio file
itself. The audio file should be clean and easy
to understand. Use an audio editor, like RecordForAll,
to remove any background noise or unwanted segments,
and to add transitions from one segment to another.
RecordForAll - http://www.recordforall.com
5. Transcribe Show In RSS Feed
Assuming the audio file content
is "spoken word" rather than or in addition to
music, transcribe the spoken content into an RSS
feed. If you have a series of audio files, you
should distribute them in a podcast. This means
creating an RSS feed. Include the transcription
of the podcast show in the Item Description field
-- this will increase the exposure that the audio
file receives. The keywords in the transcription
will also help get the file indexed and included
in related searches performed in the various RSS
search engines or podcast directories.
6. ID3 Tags
Use ID3 tags to further optimize
the audio file. ID3 tags contain meta data that
relates to the audio content.
ID3 Optimization - http://www.small-business-software.net/id3-optimization.htm
7. Promote Podcast In Audio
Search And Podcasting Directories
There are a number of new audio
search engines and a large number of podcasting
directories that freely accept podcast submissions.
Take the necessary time to go through the process
of submitting your audio files and podcasts into
Submit Podcasts - http://www.podcasting-tools.com/submit-podcasts.htm
8. Include Graphics
Include graphics with your podcast,
and especially if you are submitting your podcast
to the iTunes Directory. Such graphics, similar
to "Album Art" for audio CD covers, are standard
and expected in the iTunes directory. The graphics
can also draw additional attention to your podcast
when its displayed with the listing.
9. Include iTunes Tags
In order to have a file included
in the iTunes Music Store, you must include some
additional tags in the RSS feed. The extra tags
are specific to Apple iTunes. The easiest way
to handle them is to use software like FeedForAll
(Win and Mac versions available). The software
has a tutorial that will walk you through the
process of setting up an iTunes-compatible podcast.
Web-based tutorials can also be
found here: http://www.feedforall.com/itunes-tutorials.htm
10. Subscribe To Make Sure All
Once the audio file is finished
and uploaded to the server, be sure to download
and test a copy to insure that the sound quality
is decent and the volume is acceptable. Additionally,
if promoting the file in a podcast, you should
subscribe to the Podcast feed yourself -- this
will allow you to see exactly what your subscribers
see, and will also help confirm that the feed
is properly formed.
11. Define Audio Properties
If distributing the audio file in
a podcast, be sure to declare the audio file MIME
type and the file size in bytes. Some podcatchers
(i.e. software such as Juice and jpodder, which
manage and download podcast subscriptions) use
these settings, and leaving them out may mean
some subscribers will have difficulties subscribing.
If you are investing in audio content,
be sure you make the most of the opportunities
it offers by optimizing the audio file and podcast.
Spending a little extra time and effort here will
increase the exposure and opportunities available.
About the Author:
Sharon Housley manages marketing for FeedForAll
software for creating, editing, publishing RSS
feeds and podcasts. In addition Sharon manages
marketing for RecordForAll http://www.recordforall.com
audio recording and editing software.