How To Measure Podcast Performance
Podcasting is a fantastic endeavor and a great investment. But how do you know if you’re actually running a successful podcast once you’ve launched your show? Here’s when podcast analytics come into play! These metrics will help you figure out how many people are listening to your podcast and what type of audience you have as a host.
There are different analytics to measure podcast success and each one of them helps you monitor a different aspect of your podcasting business. If you use them correctly, you’ll be able to quantify and qualify your show’s prosperity. There are alternative ways to complement the podcast metrics as well- but they all contribute to a better understanding of your show’s listenership and performance. Still, it can be confusing to know how to measure podcast performance, so we’re here to guide you through it! In today’s post we’re sharing the best ways to measure your show’s success. Keep reading to learn all about them.
How To Measure Podcast Performance
Monitor who subscribes to your RSS feed
It’s quite time-consuming to keep track of your podcast subscribers. But with tools such as Backtracks Switchboard and FeedBurner, you can easily see the exact number of people subscribed to your show’s RSS feed. This is a key metric to start with, as it will help you survey how many new listeners your podcast gains on a monthly or weekly basis. It’s best to keep a content calendar and analyze how well each month’s content performed! And if you don’t know what content to include in your show head over to this article HERE.
Use downloads as a benchmark
The amount of unique downloads for each one of your podcast episodes will help you monitor a good chunk of your listenership. You can also keep tabs on monthly total downloads and use them as a benchmark for the amount of loyal listeners your show has. This will give you a rough estimate of your show’s loyal audience size. Though this shouldn’t be your sole measurement strategy, as it varies a lot depending on how many episodes you upload a month. Despite this, the number of downloads will help you track the growth of your show!
Check your podcast’s rankings regularly
Podcasts rankings are so much more valuable than people tend to think! It’s not just a pretty number telling you your podcast made it to the TOP 10 within your niche. Podcasts rankings also determine how potential listeners will discover your show. A podcast that ranks higher is easier to find and will grow quicker in consequence. You can easily see the rankings on Apple Podcasts to check which number your show occupies on each podcast category. You will have to know which category your show belongs to and look at the charts monthly!
Pay attention to your social media engagement
Social media engagement is a fantastic way to keep tabs on the success of your podcast! This is a key performance metric to see if your listenership interacts with you on the rest of your channels. Check if the posts where you promote your podcast have a good amount of comments and likes to monitor if your social media followers are part of your show’s listenership. You can also research the internet for any comments or post mentioning your show. This will help you monitor your podcast’s reach beyond the usual podcast directories! Interested in building a loyal following? Listen to this episode of ILYSM: tricks to grow a following, building an engaged and loyal audience.
Keep track of the consumption rate of podcast episodes
On Apple Podcasts, you can access the consumption rate for all podcast episodes up to 60 days after the release date from Apple Podcasts Connect. This will allow you to compare how people were listening to your podcast during each episode! It features the number of downloads, listeners, and time of listening. It will also show a consumption rate measured in a percentage! If all this listening talk puts you in the mood for a juicy episode, tune in to this catch-up between Jackie from The Bitch Bible and Lauryn and Michael Bosstick: Cue the Human Resources Dept.
Analyze your demographics
It’s always the smart choice to know who is actually listening to your podcast! This is why you should analyze your listenership’s demographics at least once a month. How old are your listeners? Where do they live? What are their peak times for listening to podcasts? These are the metrics that help you better understand your listeners and create content you know they’ll love! Because every audience is different and you should always tap into what makes your show a unique listening experience for them. Now, do you have a millennial audience? Then this article is perfect for you!
Consider the website traffic
If you have a personal blog or website that you advertise often in your show, check to see if the traffic increases after the release of a brand new episode. This is a good indicator of the loyalty of your podcast listenership and how interested they are in you as their host. It’s also a great strategy to check all trackable calls to action either mentioned in the show or featured in an episode’s description. Monitor all tracking URLs and the average time spent on your website. This will all help you understand both your listenership’s habits and your podcast performance! Check out this episode of What She Said for fantastic content and a great example of how to use podcast links!
Keep an eye on that email list
If you have an email list dedicated to your show, take advantage of the insights it provides. Track every open rate and all the click-throughs on the newsletters that promote your podcast. To start, always track the number of podcast subscribers and compare it to the number of people listed for your email list. Consistency is what you should aim for here! Monitor what your listenership responds to and make adjustments according to those insights.
Alternative ways to measure performance
Now that we’ve covered the more conventional podcast analytics, it’s time for the alternative ways to measure podcast performance. These include asking your audience for feedback and checking the ratings and reviews left on the different podcast directories. First, the podcasting audience is an honest one. So pay attention to their reviews and ratings! You’ll gain valuable insights into your show’s weak and strong points.
Second, it’s always good to ask for additional feedback if you feel like you need it. Just ask your listeners to give you their two cents about your show! This will strengthen your bond with the audience and help you adjust your content strategies. Though, don’t fall into the likeability trap! It’s impossible for your show to be liked by everyone, so just focus on your target audience and existing following. And, while you’re at it, listen to this killer episode of Pretty Smart to boost your confidence: Pretty likable – how to escape the likability trap.
What are your favorite methods to measure your podcast’s success?
Those were our tried and tested ways to measure podcast performance! As you can see, there are different strategies to see if you have a successful podcast in your hands. These will also help you create a content plan more targeted to your specific audience and your show’s goal. It’s all about consistency and doing the right research! Do you measure your podcast’s success? What are your go-to podcast metrics? Let us know in the comments!
One more thing before you go! Maybe you haven’t started your podcast yet and are reading this article as part of your pre-launch research. Then tune in to this episode of Friend Of A Friend: want to start a podcast? Olivia gives her best advice. It’ll give you all the tips and tricks you need to know!