SLS: State of Podcasting in 2017

SLS: State of Podcasting in 2017

By Spreaker Live Show

Spreaker Live Show #111 for May 10th, 2017

Our Topics This Week:
- State of Podcasting in 2017
- Listener Feedback and Comments Show
- Radio vs Podcasting Discussion Continues
- Show Length/Duration Discussion Continues
- My Trip to PodSummit in Calgary Discussed

Show Duration: 66 minutes

Host: Rob Greenlee, Head of Content, Spreaker @robgreenlee - rob(at)spreaker(dotcom)
Co-Host: Alex Exum, Host of “The Exum Experience Podcast” on Spreaker
- At in Calgary, Canada this Sat, May 6th, 2017

- Reflections on the Conference

State of Podcasting in 2017
We are in a Content Era, but the Listener is the driver of this medium
Awareness is building as well as Audience, but does it match with content to balance Supply & Demand
Is the Audience Growing at an Equal Rate to New Content
Monetization tools are strong and getting better everyday
Google Android Mobile Platform Consumption is still lagging far behind iOS
Smart Speakers are getting better fast and adoption is wide (age, gender, race) and growing fast
Smart Speaker tech enablement is still very weak and early in its development
Discovery is NOT much of an issue as awareness as generational shift to on demand audio happens
This medium is a Global, National Medium today, but local is coming fast as radio adopts podcasting more
Word of Mouth sharing and mixed media is still the core driver of listenership

Listener Feedback from Episode 110:

Gail Nobles
Let radio stay the same and more power to podcasting. It will keep on growing and keep on going. Keep going and going like the energizer bunny. 😀

Linda Irwin
We have a Facebook page and two Twitter accounts as well as two web sites and a SoundCloud account dedicated to the audio. Creating videos for the shows and on Wenoo at the moment until we get the new video sharing platform and streaming live video platforms built.

We get the least amount of listens on YouTube (Shifting Podcasting) compared to SoundCloud, Spreaker, Facebook and Twitter.
But then we are totally entertainment, not topic or interview based. 😄

We started out at 30 minutes and our listeners said they wanted them shorter, so we have been roughly 20 minutes since except for specials which can go up to 40 minutes

David Jackson, School of Podcasting
Alex, I know you don't like longer shows, but you need to deal with the fact that some people do.
When Rob brought up the Rob Walch data that podcasts with over 100K downloads are at least 51 minutes, you STILL were like, "But nobody listens to the whole thing."
Yet the Edison research shows they DO listen to the whole thing. I get that short shows are the ones YOU like, but that is your opinion, and you come across like your opinion is that of the podcast community (in my opinion) and you are the exception (not vice versa) according to the data.

You talk about how radio will not change, and yet your opinion makes me question your ability to incorporate new information (or will you only allow information that you agree with) to shape your thoughts.

Also, why would you create your show to be more like radio when the radio is (very, very slowly) dying. Radio is coming HERE.
Podcasting is global, radio is not.
Podcast has freedom from format - radio does not.
Podcasting has the ability to time shift - radio does not.
Speaking of opinion, this was mine. Keep up the good work.

David Kanysn - Dumbing it Down with Dave

Hi Alex and Rob, Can I call you A and R for short?

In regards to podcast lengths: The beauty of Podcasting is that there are NO rules!...NONE! Except for the boundaries and limitations set by legal agreements in regards to subscriptions, packages and language. After that the only limitations are set by your fears, concerns, lack of creativity, imagination and intelligence.

At 20:15 of episode #109 Rob said "length needs to be driven based on what the content is" I AGREE

At 20:30 Rob said "I think the consensus now pretty much is there is no such thing as an ideal length for a podcast" I AGREE!

At 21:20 Rob said "The most popular podcasts that get 100,000 or more downloads are typically 51 minutes in length on avg." I can agree that's true. I would have no idea if it wasn't true.

My take on that is it's easier to do a successful 51 minute or longer show if you get 100,000 downloads. Your supply is meeting a demand. It would be an interesting experiment to see how popular those shows would continue to be if you ADDED, or SUBTRACTED a few minutes in length to them every episode. At what length in time would you see a dropoff, if you saw a drop off at all.

Many many years back the Tonight show starring Johnny Carson was an hour and a half. It was a very popular show. Then they reduced it to an hour. Although I can't produce any ratings comparisons before or after, it remained a very popular show,and I bet it became easier to produce, and provide content. Although that's TV, it's relevant to this conversation.

The one hour format has become the staple for a late night talk show format. It's also the length of many daytime talk shows as well. There are some talk shows that are less than an hour (a half hour) but those shows are more talk, news and issue oriented as opposed to entertainment. The point being there are no rules. It comes down to being able to supply the demand...if there is a demand for it.

As far as my show goes "Dumbing it Down with Dave" I've produced 69 shows of all various lengths. My first 21 episodes I did not care about length. I knew no one was listening and I took the opportunity to experiment to figure out what I was more comfortable and best at doing.

At episode #22 I decided to try my best to stick to a 30 minute length to help me be more energetic and concise. I needed to get to "it, the "It" of Dumbing it Down With Dave. I had a good 4 month run between Nov. 2016 to Feb. 2017. My numbers shot up.

Since March my numbers have been dropping. So now in the next phase of my show #70 and so on I need to find an answer. Is it my content? Length? Sound? Social media involvement? It's probably all four!

I've also yet to expand my show to other podcast platforms. I'm only on Spreaker.

Although there's plenty of help online, the tech part of podcasting I find scary, intimidating, and time consuming, especially when you have no idea what you're doing.

In summation, we can talk about length all day, everyday. Length is just one small part of the puzzle of the successful podcast pie. Length, content, host, sound, and the combination of it all (like a perfect salad, soup or cocktail) is really what we need to be conscious of.

Thanks for taking the time to read this letter. You guys are great (A and R), Spreaker and the wonderful world of podcasting.

Hey Dave, Thanks for the detailed comment on your experience with episode length. It is a tough nut to crack and figure out for each show. You ask why your numbers have dropped. I would say a few things that are fairly easy to work on.

1) Update your square cover art image to not be distorted, you might try and get a graphic artist to take a run at it.
2) Do more show prep on topics and show structure
3) Then submit your show to Apple iTunes, Stitcher, TuneIn, Google Play Podcasts.
Just a few tips and hope that helps.

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