YouTube releases in-depth podcasting guide with best practices


YouTube is already a big home to podcasts, and the Google platform is slowly working to provide a more optimized experience. An official “Podcasting on YouTube” guide has now been released with best practices.

As spotted by Morning Brew’s Jake Appleby, this 67-page slide deck is quite in-depth with a “confidential & proprietary” label. Right off the bat, YouTube notes how “these best practices are tips to guide you that we have gathered from what has worked previously on the platform, but they are not a guarantee for success.”

YouTube’s podcasting guide is split into three sections, starting with “Channel Strategy” and management. A common questions section asks and debates whether you should:

  • Podcast On an Existing Channel or A New Channel?
  • Separate Channels for Full Podcast and Clips?

“Content Strategy” goes into planning, packaging, publishing, and promotion. There is a section on tiles and thumbnails with details on chapters and making clips. YouTube says it’s “far less important that you post frequently than it is that you post on a reliable schedule.”

High production videos are great but can be very difficult to sustain. Find a balance between content quantity and quality that you can maintain over the long term.

There are details on analytics, and promoting podcasts, with Shorts (unsurprisingly) suggested, as well as using the Community Tab of text posts.

In Content Creation, Google explicitly says (page 39) “YouTube Audiences Show A Preference For Video Podcasts Over Audio Podcasts.” It explains the distinction between audio and video-first production with Bloomberg and FiveThirtyEight used as case studies. There are slides discussing good video and audio production design, as well as the use of transcripts and captions.

This documentation comes as we wait for YouTube to provide a more dedicated listening experience. It’s unclear whether that will exist in the main YouTube app or YouTube Music. For Premium subscribers, the former offers “Listening controls” that are persistent and well-suited for podcasts. The Subscriptions tab could benefit from a dedicated podcast filter, but YouTube is already a successful place for the medium without it.

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