So, how do you know if your podcast is successful? What are good metrics for a podcast? Is it the number of subscribers? What about average podcast downloads? Actually, depending on your show’s goals and which stage you’re at in the evolution of your show (like Stage 2 of Casted’s B2B Podcast Maturity Curve where you’re launching your podcast and building your audience), yes, those may both be useful metrics to gauge content performance with your intended audience, but those are entry-level KPIs for measuring podcast success.
“You can’t pay your employees with downloads,” says podcaster and marketing extraordinaire Jay Baer. “Look at your spike in SEO; look at your spike in people mentioning the show to your customer success team. There are all these other signals that indicate that the show is doing something for your brand beyond just how many people downloaded the show.”
He’s right about all those signals, but they can be maddening to keep track of or even find. To be honest, the lack of informative podcast metrics is a big reason we built the Casted platform to begin with. We weren’t happy with the available analytics and decided to do something about it, something that would make managing and tracking our podcast, The Casted Podcast, easier for our team and based on more reliable engagement data. Ultimately, we want to know our audience like never before, and that’s exactly what the Casted platform allows you to do too.
This article shows how we use our own B2B podcast platform and Insights analytics to know who’s in our audience and what they’re most interested in, the challenges they have to overcome in leveraging a podcast to grow the brand, and ways to use analytics and podcast content to reach out to those brands who need your brand’s expertise the most.
There is no one way to successfully run a show that grows your brand. Depending on your brand and your industry, a B2B podcast can be strategically produced and managed in a number of ways. The key factor to which way you choose depends on what you want your show to do. What are its business goals?
Before you even select the KPIs you’re going to measure for success, you have to know what you intend your show to do. Is it to promote brand awareness? Is it audience education? Is it your unique thought leadership or brand differentiation? Is it a way to get your customer stories into the minds of your audience? Is it a relationship-building ABM strategy to drive pipeline?
Overall, podcasts generate lifetime customer engagement and business value, but because podcasting is such a special channel that encourages your audience to spend time with your brand where and when no other channel comes close, a show is one of the strongest ways for your brand to connect with your audience. As B2B podcasting wizard Jay Acunzo says, “Customers spend time with you, they trust you, and they take more action on your behalf.”
For us, The Casted Podcast exists to:
- Get our brand’s name into the minds of our audience.
- Create a destination for B2B marketers and podcasters to learn about podcast best practices and serve as a resource center for questions and solutions.
- Build Casted’s credibility as a trusted thought leader in B2B podcasting for our target audience.
- Build a network of podcast professionals and subject matter experts to create rich sources of content and partnerships.
- Drive pipeline, convert leads, and generate revenue to grow the brand.
Once you understand why you’re doing a podcast — table stakes for a brand’s positioning and go-to-market strategies — you can then drill down into the best metrics to gauge whether you're achieving your goals.
Podcast Metrics That Matter
Let’s review your choices for how you can best measure your show’s success. Here’s where you stand today:
Audience Building Metrics
Once you launch your show (Maturity Curve Stage 2), you’ll begin to collect your first round of success data where you can measure brand awareness — although at this stage, you’re mostly setting a baseline and looking for those early incremental boosts in listener- and viewership. Here’s a few metrics you should track:
- # of subscribers
- # of listens/downloads
- # of social media mentions and engagement (shares, comments, likes, etc.)
- # of verbal mentions to sales and customer success team members (tracked via CRM, customer service portal, or internal spreadsheet)
- # of podcast merchandise purchases
Audience Growth Metrics
When you focus on growing your podcast audience (Maturity Curve Stage 3), you can begin comparing new listener data to previous information, identify the topics that best engage listeners and viewers, and use this knowledge to make your show even more appealing and helpful to your audience.
- % change in subscribers
- % change in listens/downloads
- % change in new and unique listeners
- % change in returning listeners
- # of visits to podcast pages
Audience Engagement Metrics
To further grow your audience and expand your podcast content across all your marketing channels (Maturity Curve Stage 4), you can capitalize off additional channel data sources and amplify your show in various formats to reach even more listeners and viewers. Look for these metrics:
- % average completion time
- Podcast rating
- # of episode comments or reviews
- Responses to questions, quizzes, or contests
- Sponsor ad clicks or promo codes used
- # of surveys taken (via email or provided URL)
- Top audio/video clips
- # of show or episode shares from hosting platform
- # of shares of related content (podcast transcripts, blogs, clips, etc.)
Pipeline and Conversion Metrics
To put the last piece of the puzzle into place, you’ll want to measure how your podcast impacts your overall business growth strategies (Maturity Curve Stage 5) and find the best metrics for tracking how your show fuels pipeline and drives conversion:
- # of leads through podcast-driven content (episodes, blogs, audio- and videograms, social media, email, etc.)
- # of form/chat/demo conversions on podcast pages
- Pipeline influenced by podcasts
- # of listeners converted to meetings
- # of prospects listening during the buying cycle (and which episodes)
While not all of these metrics may apply to your brand’s podcast or the stage your show’s at (so far), you should be able to decide on KPIs that will reflect whether your content is engaging. But inside the Casted platform, there are more ways to measure how well you’re engaging your podcast listeners and viewers.
Casted Podcast Analytics
Casted Insights will help you know your audience like never before — and that’s not just your show’s audience but your brand’s audience and the ideal customers you want to build relationships with using your B2B podcast. Let’s dive into performance, engagement, and account-based metrics.
Inside Casted, each episode’s and show collection’s analytics reveal who’s listening to and viewing your podcast, including the following key audience data:
- Total Audience measures downloads, which in turn measure engagement on your RSS feeds.
- Unique Audience is a calculated or estimated metric that identifies which plays came from a single individual (on a Casted player).
- New Audience shows how many people in your audience engaged with your content (on Casted pages or embedded players) during a particular time frame.
- Returning Audience shows how many people in your audience engaged with your content (on Casted pages or embedded players) more than once during a particular time frame.
- Total Impressions comprises three data points: downloads, plays, and visits. Here visits occur when anyone visits a page that any Casted player (including embeds and playlists) is present on but does not actually play the content.
- Total Audience Likes reveals how many people clicked the Like button on Casted pages or embedded players.
- Total Audience Shares shows how many people in your audience clicked the Share button on Casted pages or embedded players.
- Average Completion Time is determined by taking the average length of engagement (based on plays on Casted pages or embedded players) in a particular time frame and comparing it with the total length of the content.
For a brand just launching their show (B2B Podcast Maturity Curve Stage 2), these are all great performance metrics that give you a better idea than downloads alone about how big your audience is and how engaging your episodes are. By tracking these metrics over time, a brand in Stage 3 of the Maturity Curve can also measure how they’re growing their audience.
As a brand graduates into the higher stages of the Maturity Curve, Casted takes these performance metrics a few steps further with firmographic engagement metrics that enable you to know which brands are tuning into your show.
The Insights Audience Table presents a wealth of information about the brands listening to or viewing your podcast. Regardless of whether they come to your show through a web player on your site or one of the major podcasting apps and platforms, you can see how your podcast content resonates with your audience and how it ultimately impacts business growth.
Here you can see who’s engaging and how often they engage as follows:
- Company: The name of the company associated with the engagement data.
- CRM: If you have integrated Casted with a CRM, this column indicates if a member of that company was matched with a known contact record.
- Engagements: The number of times this company has listened to or watched your content within the selected date range.
- Last Engagement: The last date that this company listened to or watched your content within the selected date range.
You can also drill down a little further into the Company Profile and get deeper insights into how and what this particular brand is engaging with.
The Company Profile uncovers the following valuable data and information:
- A brief summary of who the company is and what they do.
- The date range defaults to the last 30 days, but you can customize it to any range you want in the dropdown menu.
- Time Spent with Content: How long the audience associated with this company listened to or watched your content within the selected date range.
- Unique Contacts: How many individuals from this company engaged with your content, no matter how many times they engaged in a single session or how many times they returned within the date range.
- Total Engagements: The number of downloads and plays from the company within the date range.
- Total Impressions: The number of downloads, plays, and visits from the company within the date range.
- Company Metrics: This chart helps visualize this particular company’s engagement, showing Impressions, Listens, and Watches over the selected date range.
When you put together all of these analytic capabilities available inside Casted, you can now see potential leads better and use relevant podcast content to fuel your account-based marketing strategy and build valuable connections. In this way, your podcast, whether you leverage it for brand awareness or thought leadership, becomes the engine driving your overall business growth strategy.
Find Your Best Podcast Performance Metrics
Casted is in the business of B2B podcasting, and just like everyone else leveraging the channel, we had to start somewhere, too. Our road to defining goals and metrics wasn’t always a neat and clean one, and a great deal of that challenge was due to a lack of podcast analytics solutions.
Well, part of Casted’s WHY was to solve that pain point for ourselves, and in the process, make better analytics available for the entire content marketing arena out there. Another part of our mission is to help you realize there’s tremendous value behind every word you and your guests share behind the mic on your show.
If you’re thinking about experimenting with a new powerful marketing channel, start setting your brand’s podcast goals today. Look at what makes sense for achieving your organization’s distinct mission. Then, map your goals to attainable metrics. When you use your podcast as a way to fuel your strategy (instead of just managing yet another marketing channel), you accelerate your pipeline to meet business goals faster.
Can you tell we’ve spent some time thinking about how B2B podcasting can grow your brand? That’s because we see the power of conversation for brands big and small every day through our all-in-one platform for executing, managing, and measuring your podcast gold. Get in touch with us to see for yourself.