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  • Podcast statistics: relevance and flexibility

    Podcastics • Community

    It is not easy to get reliable, accurate and detailed statistics when it comes to podcasts. It is why Podcastics has decided to cover as much data as possible in its simple and intuitive interface, to give you the most realistic picture of your audience.

    Former French president Jacques Chirac once said: “Statistics is the third kind of lie.” This quote derives from Mark Twain’s just as negative words: “There are three kind of lies: lies, damned lies, and statistics.” One thing is for sure: neither Jacques Chirac nor Mark Twain were Podcastics users, as they would have never said such hard things. Yes, that’s right.

    Podcastics (Podcast + Analytics) as a name happens to perfectly embody this concept: since the very beginning of the project, we have been focusing on our statistics module. Why you ask? Well, because audience-related data is not just made to flatter podcasters’ egoes. They must be thorough enough to help them understand their audience and adapt their strategies to their viewers’ habits (i.e. the publication time of their episodes or the topics covered). Such data might as well be completely accurate to make it easier for a podcaster to find sponsors.

    Data accuracy is not everything though. As you might want to draw lessons from your statistics, they must be well listed and easy to read. Join Podcastics and you will experience a great flexibility when it comes to highlighting the most relevant statistics to you. All podcasters do not rely on the same data. Sometimes, one person’s needs evolve over his/her podcasting career. Therefore, we make it easy for you to see general data as well as episode-related stats. You can also get time-filtered stats so you can see your best days, weeks, months, etc. Podcastics will manage to give you the most relevant display based on your preferences thanks to:

    • A “contextual” date filter: depending on the selected episode, the date range will automatically change so it remains in line with your selection.



    • An “intelligent” display: depending on the selected date range, your stats will be displayed on an hourly, daily, or monthly basis.

    Here are a few screenshots of the platform so you can figure out what Podcastics has to offer in terms of stats. No matter the data you pick, the questions remain the same: who are your listeners and what are their habits regarding your podcast?

    WHAT IS A play?

    Before we get to the point, let’s answer a crucial question, behind which lies another: how do we measure a play? The stats registered on Podcastics are IAB certified. To put it in a nutshell, they rely on the access to an audio file. A play starts as soon as a listener accesses one of your audio files, be it via an app, a web player or direct download.

    However, to generate reliable and coherent stats, the listening stats undergo many processing steps:

    • Robots 🤖 and browsers are filtered out
    • When a single episode is watched several times from the same device in the same place over a 24-hour period, it is considered as one listening
    • A listening is only taken into account from the first downloaded minute. This point is sort of irrelevant as most audio players automatically download more than a minute to store the audio file in their memories.

    All IAB certified statistics are reliable and homogeneous. This certification is also used by podcast advertising sales agency to count advertising campaigns and pay podcast editors.

    Number of plays

    How many people listen to my podcast? It is obviously what new podcasters wonder, so much that they spend days or weeks frantically refreshing their stat pages only to be happy when they see the figures change. If you are one of them, please note that Podcastics refreshes the stats every five minutes. We set on this interval so that you can give your F5 key a little rest.

    Once again, here are a few pictures of our audience-related graphs and what you should know.

    Overall plays



    Two things about the above graph:

    • The green line represents the listening average depending on the selected time unit (here, months)
    • The number of episodes published at a given date is specified. One could say that this is not much, but it allows to understand at a glance the causes of some audience peaks 🧐

    This first graph is accompanied by a beautiful box in which you will find: the average of the listening of your podcast over a given period, their evolution compared to the previous one and ... your positioning compared to other podcasts hosted on Podcastics: top 50%, 20%, 10% or 5% 🥈🥇🥉


    Plays per episode




    As you can see, when you select a particular episode, the podcast total appears in a superimposition. The tooltip shows you the proportion of the episode's plays to the podcast's plays.

    Note that if the selected episode had been released only a few hours earlier, the stat display would have been automatically adapted to show an hourly graph. In other words, if Podcastics was seating in the back of your car on a holiday trip, it would definitely not ask “are we there yet?” every five minutes.

    Another way of looking at it is the graph showing the number of plays for the different episodes of the podcast. Here, the tooltip shows the ranking of the episodes in relation to others.




    Finally, thanks to our ranking, you can easily spot the best performing episodes since your show started:




    A high-performance search engine

    Your latest episode reached thousands of listeners and you can’t get enough? Let’s travel back in time to check how well you did a few years ago and you will see how far you have gone since! Just type in one of the key words mentioned in the title or the description of the episode you are looking for, and our search engine will dig out this treasure at top speed.

    Comparing episode performances on their launch

    These few pictures give you a quick glance of what Podcastics has to offer. Why should you have to wait for weeks to see if your latest episode performs better than the previous ones? Wouldn't you like to be able to compare these stats from the very first hour of publication? Spoiler alert: we can do it.



    The blue curve is for your latest episode, while the other two curves stand for the two previous ones. Thanks to our search engine, you can quickly select any other past episode to get a more relevant comparison, for instance if your latest episode deals with a topic you have already talked about in another show.

    In the same spirit, Podcastics now allows you to compare the cumulative plays of your episodes since the day they were launched. If you're a fan of long-distance racing, you'll definitely find it useful. There's no better way to see how one episode is doing compared to the others!



    Finally, another graph shows you the comparison of all your launch weeks. The objective here is to see at a glance the performance of all #podcast episodes during their first week of publication.



    Podcastics may be proud of its statistics module, but we do not rest on our laurels. Our developers keep working to make things easier for you and answer needs you did not even know you had. Now is time to introduce our brand new feature: the heat map.

    The heat map shows your podcast activity




    You get it: Podcastics’ heat map helps you spot your podcast’s performance peaks over the week, the month or the year. It is a great way to understand your listeners’ habits so you can adapt your strategy for when you launch next episodes.

    The heat map is cool, isn’t it? We like it too, so much that we have decided to make it available for our best podcasters, that is to say… all of them! Yes indeed, this extremely useful map is included to all the Podcastics packages comprising statistics analysis. Last but not least: it comes with two other displays of your podcasts’ best performing days and hours.




    SOURCES OF plays

    Now that you know when your fans listen to your podcast, don’t you wonder how? By correlating both answers, you might be able to picture the face of a focused thirty-year old man driving back from work, or that of a breathless woman on her early morning jog, both of them listening to your anecdotes, jokes and tales.

    The first of the three semicircles below is definitely the most interesting as it is about listening device. You may notice that users’ habits evolve very quickly. The latest Havas/CSA study on native podcast, introduced during the 2019 Paris Podcast Festival, shows that listeners are mostly on the move (60%), alone (76%) and use earphones (79%). Obviously, these data may significantly fluctuate from a podcast (or a topic) to the other.




    As for the other two semicircles, here they are. They are related to platforms and players:




    You have no idea how many players there are as far as podcast listening is concerned. Podcastics exclude none of them (more than 200 listed!), even if it means exploring the depths of the Internet. No matter the player used by a listener who wants to listen to one of your episodes, a play will be counted.




    And since we also want to fully satisfy the most fervent consumers of stats among you, a graph shows you the evolution of the players' market share according to the chosen period:



    Finally, as it is always a pleasure to see people listen to your podcast in Malaysia or South Africa, Podcastics give you a world map of your statistics. Let’s be honest: you may have more listeners in Texas or Ohio than in Nicaragua.




    So that you don't miss the rare bird by confusing a very pale blue with an immaculate white one, this map will be systematically accompanied by a complete list of countries and the number of plays they generate, however small. With the bonus of the number of countries where you have gained an audience during the past period 🥳




    Statistics and bikinis: much of a muchness

    We opened this article with Jacques Chirac’s words, let’s close it with another Aaron Levenstein’s quote: “Statistics are like bikinis. What they reveal is suggestive, but what they conceal is vital.” Once again, we have chosen to prove our dear Aaron wrong: Podcastics shows everything and has nothing to hide!


    jim carrey strip GIF

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