Incredibly Simple Podcast Growth Hack for iOS Mobile Safari

Use Apple's "Smart Banner" technology on your website to promote your Podcast - it iOS way.
Navigating Podcasts - Cause Hack
Jim Carter III
Jim Carter III
Jim is Carter & Custer's Founder & CEO, and can typically be found sipping coffee and grooming his mustache.

There are over 1.4 billion users of iOS as of 2019 with that number growing daily. And not only does Apple have a continued rising share of users, but they also have one of the most popular platforms for Podcast discovery worldwide. 

We all struggle with cross-promotion. Marketing quality content to rise above the noise is hard work. 

And if you have a Podcast and are looking for the easiest way to promote it directly to iOS users, I have got an AMAZING hack for you, and it’s using Apple’s “Smart Banners” re-purposed for Podcasts. 

What Are Smart Banners?

Apple released a ‘one line of code’ approach years back for App developers to promote their apps. And these are really slick because the action switches from VIEW to OPEN once you have the app installed to make it feel incredibly personal. 

For 7 major iOS versions now, iOS users have been conditioned to see and trust these banners, knowing what they get. 

From Apple themselves:

Smart App Banners vastly improve users’ browsing experience compared to other promotional methods. As banners are implemented in iOS 6, they will provide a consistent look and feel across the web that users will come to recognize. Users will trust that tapping the banner will take them to the App Store and not a third-party advertisement. They will appreciate that banners are presented unobtrusively at the top of a webpage, instead of as a full-screen ad interrupting the web content. And with a large and prominent close button, a banner is easy for users to dismiss.

However, I discovered they work for Podcasts too 🤩

The other day I was chatting with my man Lewis, and he noticed on Tim Ferriss’ blog, it was promoting his Podcast and sent me a screenshot. I knew when I saw, it looked way too familiar. 

I then discovered the trick. 

The same way you install a Smart Banner to promote your App Store App, you can promote your Podcast via Apple’s directory.


So naturally, I made a fresh cup of coffee and dove in to check it out. And in *minutes* we had success.

Try it out on Lewis’ site ➡️

Awesome right?

Now let’s talk about how to add it for your Podcast!

How To Add This To Your Site

Fear not, even though this takes some code, it’s a matter of copy and paste, and you don’t need to hire a developer. 

Start by going into your website and finding the section where you can add something to the <head> of your site. 

This is typically found in either the theme area, advanced sections, or integration options depending on your platform.

If your platform doesn’t allow adding to the head, you’ll need to edit the code for your site and find it towards the top where that “head” tag is, and you can add just below it.

Copy And Paste This Line of Code

Once you find the area, copy and paste the following in:

<meta name="apple-itunes-app" content="app-id=XXXXXXXXXXXXX">

And we’re going to replace the XXXXXXXXXXXXX with your Podcast’s unique id next. 

Find and Update Your Podcast’s Apple ID

To find your Podcast’s ID, it’s actually really simple! Open up your Apple Podcast app, select your podcast and choose the option to Copy Link

Once you have the link, paste it to a notepad and it will look something like this:

Simply grab the numeric digits from the end AFTER id and use that number in place of the XXXXXXXXXXXXX above.

That would make this example’s final code look like this:

   <meta name="apple-itunes-app" content="app-id=1401057414">

And you’re done!

How did it work for you?  Tag us on Social @causehack with a screenshot of how it works on your site!

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