Today, podcasts have become one of the most popular forms of media, but if you’re the creator of one, it can be hard to gauge its success.
In order to improve your series and get a bigger audience, you need to know what metrics to look at and what you can do to improve its popularity.
The most important metrics to look at include the download count, number of listeners, sponsorships and advertising results, and website and social media activity.
By using a combination of these metrics, you can see which areas might be lacking, so you’ll be able to improve on them.
A podcast can only thrive if it’s carefully analyzed and managed, so you need to know how to do that.
This quick guide covers the metrics that every podcast host should understand, including how to boost audience count and how to recognize the signs that your podcast is in trouble.
The Metrics You Need to Understand
A podcast is run like any other business and it requires ongoing management and adjustments to keep it successful. These are the metrics that any podcast host should know how to track to see if their podcast is doing well:
- Website and Social Media Traffic: It’s not just your podcast that you need to look at to see if it’s going well, your online presence should be studied as well. Look at the numbers and traffic on your website and social media accounts to see how they’re tracking, this will usually directly relate to your show.
- Advertising and Sponsorship: The number of sponsors that your podcast has and how much revenue is earned from marketing and advertising is another way to see how it’s performing. As most podcasts aim to earn some income, this is a good goal to aim for.
- Active Listeners: The listener count of a podcast is probably one of the most important metrics, as it shows you how many people are tuning in to your show. This should either be growing or steady if your podcast is performing well.
- Downloads per Episode: As some people download podcasts rather than stream them directly, you can get a good idea of how many downloads you’re attracting per episode. This is a good way to compare which episodes were more successful and then you can try to create content that’s similar to them.
- Fresh Content: Look at the transcripts of your podcast to see what percentage of the episodes are made with recycled or fresh content. A show with largely original content is the goal for a podcaster, so do what you can to keep the show new.
How to Increase Podcast Popularity
Once you have an understanding of the metrics for measuring your podcast’s success, you can use them to grow it as well. Try these methods to increase the listener count of your podcast and ensure its popularity increases with time:
- Promote Your Podcast: Consider where and how you can promote your podcast, aside from just the streaming platforms. Social media accounts, a branded website, and the joining of podcast networks are all ways to get your name out there.
- Think About Value: When people tune into your podcast, they need to be gaining something from it. Whether it’s insider information, entertainment, or new and relevant discussions, be brutally honest and think about what value you’ve added to your podcast that will make people want to listen.
- Invite Noted Guests: With some reputable guest hosts or interviewees on your podcast, you’ll add value to your podcast in a unique way. You can have expert speakers or vibrant personalities on the show, as long as they match the episode’s content.
- Be a Guest on Other Podcasts: To make your name known, it can help to spread the word about your personality by guest hosting another podcast. Sometimes, this is all you need to assert yourself as an authority and engage with a whole world of new listeners who will want to hear what your own podcast has to offer.
Signs That Your Podcast is in Trouble
Even with the best intentions and ideas, podcasts can sometimes fail to get off the ground. If you’re noticing any of these warning signs, it might be time to go back to the drawing board and start again:
- You’ve Lost Interest in the Podcast: Whether you have no passion for it anymore or you just don’t care enough to put in the hard work, your podcast is probably not going to get very far if you have no interest in it.
- You Have No Original Content: A podcast without engaging content isn’t worth very much and if you’ve tried all avenues but are still struggling to come up with the next episode, it could be that this particular series doesn’t have staying power.
- Your Follower Count is Dropping: Whether it’s stagnating or dropping, seeing a decrease in followers and listeners is never good. If you’ve tried everything and still can’t boost your engagement, you might have to call it quits.
- You’re Losing Money: It’s common to spend more at the beginning of any business venture, but if your podcast has been running for months and you find that you’re bleeding money, it might be time to admit that it’s not financially viable anymore.
Measuring Success With Metrics
The only way forward with your podcast is to measure its results in the present, and a good understanding of metrics is the best way to do this.
With regular monitoring of your show, you can create improved content and marketing strategies that will allow you to grow your audience reach even further.