Podcast metrics to track

At this point, the podcast is up and running. Podcasts are being promoted in a variety of ways. If these methods do not work, there is no point in using them. The host needs to know whether these methods are effective. Metrics help determine whether podcasts are growing. The most useful indicator is the average listening time.

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Why track average listening time?

Downloads are not an accurate measure of the number of listeners to a podcast. When the podcast episode is in the podcast player, download counts. An episode in a podcast player does not mean that someone has heard the episode. Several months may pass before the audience broadcasts an episode.

The average listening time tells the host whether people have listened to an episode. The average listening time refers to the average time the audience listens to an episode. The average listening time divides an episode into four quadrants. For example, suppose the host has a ten-minute podcast. The podcast has two listeners and can listen to the second and third minutes at most. Then, people only listen to the first quarter of the podcast. The average listening time is two and a half minutes. The host knows that they need to change the beginning of the podcast to allow people to listen to the rest of the podcast.

Where can I find the average listening time?

Hosts can find out the average listening time of their podcasts by looking at their analysis. The host must check the information of each podcast player. Different players may have different titles. Look for titles that contain the word “average.” Each podcast player is likely to have a different average listening time.

What can the host use this information for?

Hosts can use average listening time to improve their podcasts. They can place items or topics that they want the audience to hear within the average listening time limit. The host can issue a call to action for the listener within the average listening time limit.

If the host monetizes his podcast through advertising, the host can charge more based on the average listening time. The host can charge different fees according to the average listening time. If hosts make money through advertising, they may have different types of advertising. There may be pre-roll ads and interstitial ads with different rates. If the average listening time of the podcast is within the in-stream advertisement, the host can charge a higher rate for the in-stream advertisement.

If the host doesn’t like average listening time or thinks people are leaving too early, find out why!

How can a landlord figure out why people leave too early? Send survey. Ask people if they have any questions about the show, what they want to see in the show, or how long they will listen to it. The host can request comments at any time. When people have questions about products or services, they let the public know. Remind them how to do it.

Why is average listening time important?

The fact that average listening time is not a standard indicator is important. This shows that the podcast industry is underdeveloped. Other content platforms have their own version of the average listening time as a standard. For video platforms, this metric is called average watch time. The blogging platform calls it the average reading time.

If the host knows that the average listening time is short, the host can improve the content. Just knowing the number of downloads will not provide the same opportunity.

What can the host do?

Require podcast hosting companies to include metrics

A large number of customer inquiries will enable the company to research it. After some time, the company will add it. Other companies will see the change and add it.

Get news sources to write it

Understanding this indicator through the news will encourage companies to add it. The news source will make the company aware of this indicator.


News sources obtain information to be written from discussions or events. Discussing the average listening time will lead news sources to write articles about this indicator.

Ask for money from venture capital

The goal of venture capitalists is to make money. If the host can turn the average listening time into a matter of getting what you pay for, then venture capital firms will fund the solution. However, it withdrew after the B series.

Why download is a standard indicator


For downloads, the analytics provider only needs to track the number of clicks on the RSS feed. For the average listening time, how many times the analytics provider must track. In addition, how long each click lasts, which can be expensive.

Simple standard

Everyone immediately understands the importance of the number of downloads. For the average listening time, everyone has a different number. The meaning of each podcast is different. It is good for a 10-minute podcast with an average listening time of 9 minutes, but not for a 2-hour podcast. But the host must explain why 9 minutes is important. If the host says, “The latest episode of my podcast has been downloaded 100 times.” People immediately understand the meaning.

The problem of average listening time

Only give the average

One problem with the average listening time is that it is an average. If there is a problem with the podcast, the problem may not appear temporarily. A bad episode may look like an outlier in the data.

Not a standard indicator

The host must go through each podcast platform and track the indicators one by one. Make the host difficult to track. The host does not have a clear number and must continue to track each platform.

Will be difficult to get in place

I have a theory for achieving average listening time. RSS feeds need to track the entire time someone listens to a podcast. It will be expensive. It may be difficult for companies to use average listening time as a standard. From the company’s point of view, there is not much gain. Without it, this industry has survived for many years. Why spend money to add it?


Total downloads

The host can find podcast players that already use the average listening time as the indicator. Use the player as the main link to promote and send to people. This will allow a lot of listening on this player and make it easier to track average listening time. Next, get the number of downloads of each episode + the number of people who listened to the entire episode. Using these numbers can more accurately estimate who is actually listening. If 100 people download an episode of BAIB podcast. If 33% of 100 people listened to 99% of an episode, then the episode would have 33 listeners.


This article is taken from the Open Podcast Community book.The book can be used Buy here.

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