PodCraft | Learn the Art of Podcasting in Focussed Seasons

What's a good number of downloads for a podcast?

September 10, 2019 The Podcast Host Season 12 Episode 4
PodCraft | Learn the Art of Podcasting in Focussed Seasons
What's a good number of downloads for a podcast?
Chapters
PodCraft | Learn the Art of Podcasting in Focussed Seasons
What's a good number of downloads for a podcast?
Sep 10, 2019 Season 12 Episode 4
The Podcast Host

In a world of YouTube views and Twitter followers, we've become accustomed to figures in the hundreds of thousands, and even millions.

Read the full article

It's important to realise though, these numbers are completely irrelevant to podcasting. The time and effort it takes for someone to click ‘Follow' on Twitter, or watch a few seconds of a Youtube video, should never be compared to podcast listening.

Podcast listening is a commitment, and an investment. It's long form content that isn't immediately accessible via shiny sidebars and viral social media clickbait.

So comparing your downloads to someone else's Instagram followers is like comparing the number of rooms in your house, to the number of trees in the Amazon. It's completely irrelevant and utterly pointless.

Does it (as usual) Just Depend?

Of course it does.

Could a podcast about breeding Russian white dwarf hamsters realistically expect to see the same downloads as a podcast about Game of Thrones? Absolutely not.

Does this mean that the podcast with more downloads is the more successful one? Again, absolutely not.

If you ran a podcast about a topic that was only interesting to literally 10 people in the world, and you were getting 7 downloads an episode, statistically, you'd be running the most popular show in history.

It's the size of your potential audience that's the big factor. Here are a couple of things to consider.

Firstly, how many folks out there are interested enough in your topic to actually want to consume content about it?

Secondly, how many of those people are current podcast listeners?

Thinking along these lines will help bring you closer to seeing what those cold hard download stats tell you. They can help you set realistic goals, that don't involve drawing comparisons with viral videos and celebrity social media accounts.

A Good Gauge 

One of the easiest ways to get a snapshot of podcast download stats as a whole, is to listen to Libsyn's official podcast The Feed.

Libsyn are one of the biggest podcast media hosting platforms in the industry.

Naturally, they can only provide stats based on the shows that host there. But there's over 50,000 of them, which makes it a pretty significant sample size.

Their show – The Feed – is also essential listening for any podcaster – even if you don't host with Libsyn. They provide great statistical data every other week. This can help you to see how your numbers measure up in the grand scheme of things. Remember, though, that it's far from the whole story.

At the time of writing, here were the latest figures. These are based on the number of downloads in the 30 day period following the release of a new episode.

If your new episode gets, within 30 days of its release:

  • more than 136 downloads, you're in the top 50% of podcasts.
  • more than 1100 downloads, you're in the top 20% of podcasts.
  • more than 3200 downloads, you're in the top 10% of podcasts.
  • more than 7,700 downloads, you're in the top 5% of podcasts.
  • more than 20,000 downloads, you're in the top 2% of podcasts.
  • more than 36,000 downloads, you're in the top 1% of podcasts.

Source: The Feed – Episode 145


A big thanks to NameSilo for sponsoring this episode. Use our coupon code podcraft to get $1 off your first order. 

Support the show (https://pod.academy)

Show Notes

In a world of YouTube views and Twitter followers, we've become accustomed to figures in the hundreds of thousands, and even millions.

Read the full article

It's important to realise though, these numbers are completely irrelevant to podcasting. The time and effort it takes for someone to click ‘Follow' on Twitter, or watch a few seconds of a Youtube video, should never be compared to podcast listening.

Podcast listening is a commitment, and an investment. It's long form content that isn't immediately accessible via shiny sidebars and viral social media clickbait.

So comparing your downloads to someone else's Instagram followers is like comparing the number of rooms in your house, to the number of trees in the Amazon. It's completely irrelevant and utterly pointless.

Does it (as usual) Just Depend?

Of course it does.

Could a podcast about breeding Russian white dwarf hamsters realistically expect to see the same downloads as a podcast about Game of Thrones? Absolutely not.

Does this mean that the podcast with more downloads is the more successful one? Again, absolutely not.

If you ran a podcast about a topic that was only interesting to literally 10 people in the world, and you were getting 7 downloads an episode, statistically, you'd be running the most popular show in history.

It's the size of your potential audience that's the big factor. Here are a couple of things to consider.

Firstly, how many folks out there are interested enough in your topic to actually want to consume content about it?

Secondly, how many of those people are current podcast listeners?

Thinking along these lines will help bring you closer to seeing what those cold hard download stats tell you. They can help you set realistic goals, that don't involve drawing comparisons with viral videos and celebrity social media accounts.

A Good Gauge 

One of the easiest ways to get a snapshot of podcast download stats as a whole, is to listen to Libsyn's official podcast The Feed.

Libsyn are one of the biggest podcast media hosting platforms in the industry.

Naturally, they can only provide stats based on the shows that host there. But there's over 50,000 of them, which makes it a pretty significant sample size.

Their show – The Feed – is also essential listening for any podcaster – even if you don't host with Libsyn. They provide great statistical data every other week. This can help you to see how your numbers measure up in the grand scheme of things. Remember, though, that it's far from the whole story.

At the time of writing, here were the latest figures. These are based on the number of downloads in the 30 day period following the release of a new episode.

If your new episode gets, within 30 days of its release:

  • more than 136 downloads, you're in the top 50% of podcasts.
  • more than 1100 downloads, you're in the top 20% of podcasts.
  • more than 3200 downloads, you're in the top 10% of podcasts.
  • more than 7,700 downloads, you're in the top 5% of podcasts.
  • more than 20,000 downloads, you're in the top 2% of podcasts.
  • more than 36,000 downloads, you're in the top 1% of podcasts.

Source: The Feed – Episode 145


A big thanks to NameSilo for sponsoring this episode. Use our coupon code podcraft to get $1 off your first order. 

Support the show (https://pod.academy)