APODcalypse: Sub-Audible Keyword Stuffing?
When robots figure out how to search audio, you can bet bad actors will be there to game the results.
To properly index podcast content, sounds need to be converted to something like text, if only for a robot to parse through and make sense of. It's only a matter of when, not if, unscrupulous scammers try to rig the game.
In this short episode, I'll share one possible scenario that looks a lot like the bad actor SEO game of the late '90s and early '00s. Back then, it was common to display white text on a white background at the bottom of the page. No human would see it (unless they viewed the source of the page), but the at-the-time dumb robots would happily add that text to the visible text on the page. Back then, more instances of the keyword would almost guarantee you a spot on the first page of search results for that phrase.
Today, the most used search algorithms for podcasts are even dumber than these early efforts. And that's a fertile breeding ground for bad behavior and shady businesses to do chart manipulation on a whole new scale. Don't fall for it!