Quite sometime ago I tweeted my mild frustration at the fact that I found a few podcasts, here and there, that were without a date. You know, like blog posts without a time stamp?
I got a few replies and had some short conversations. Nothing too deep. But after a few days I revisited it and did a little research. When I Googled it, not much came up. Either I was putting in the wrong terms, or nobody gave a damn.
Still, it had me wondering.
Should You Date Your Podcast Posts?
The simple answer is, it depends, or at least that is what some argued. But I’m going out on a limb here and say, yes, you should do it. And as I will explain further, if anything, do it for your listeners who care.
As I explored it further, the most common remarks were:
Most people listen to the podcasts on a platform, like iTunes. Why bother?
My podcast is about XXXX, (topics that are evergreen and never outdated).
I don’t think my listeners care (perhaps most disturbing because it’s an assumption).
There were more, but let’s take these three.
Most of My Audience Uses a Podcast Platform to Listen
Well, good for you. But have you ever looked at iTunes? Yes, they do include a published date. Or perhaps you use Overcast. Well, heck, I see the date right under the title. There must be a reason.
My Podcasts Are Evergreen
So you say your podcast episodes are evergreen, timeless, so it’s not necessary to date them? I might agree with you if you just read Bible scriptures in every episode. But interviews and conversations between hosts cry for dates. Whether you are talking about your beginnings in business or life, it would be nice to know when you had those thoughts you are sharing with us. It gives your listeners much-needed context and perspective.
My Listeners Don’t Really Care
I was perusing some reviews on several podcasts, from hugely popular podcasts to smaller niche ones. The reviews didn’t mention the presence or absence of dates on the post. But we should never assume that we know what our listeners want, whether they give a hoot about the dates or not. To be on the safe side, keep the date on. That way you satisfy both preferences. If it doesn’t matter, they’ll ignore it. If they do care, it’s there for them. And isn’t that who we are podcasting for, our listeners?
A Lot of Podcasts Include Dates on Their Posts
In my research, I looked at a wide variety of business, entertainment and storytelling podcasts. I stuck to very popular ones, because I figured, they must be doing something right. Overwhelmingly, the podcasters dated their posts. Granted, some didn’t, but most did.
I didn’t write this to argue the point, nor to shame anyone who has chosen to not date their podcast posts. But if you are a podcaster or are thinking about starting one, think it over. Weigh the pros and cons. Think about your listeners. And, as always, in the end, do what you feel is right.
An audio version of this post: