According to Rebecca Lieb at ClickZ, “Podcasting offers iffy metrics.” Her argument:
Once you’re podcasting, the only reliable metric you get, as with text RSS feeds, is number of subscribers.
Wrong. You can get how many people checked your RSS feed within a certain time frame, which is a decent approximation of subscribers but hardly the whole story.
I know a guy who downloads a month worth of Podcasts on the first Saturday of each month. He is counted as a subscriber 1/30th of the time but consumes more Podcasts than anyone else I know.
My wife listens to Podcasts daily from Podcasts.Yahoo.com’s Web interface when she rides the exercise bike. She’s very much an active listener, have a bookmark list of her favorites, but doesn’t register as a subscriber.
The value of subscriber numbers (as most measure them today) are very very questionable.
There’s no way to know how many subscriber actually listen to any given podcast (much less if they listen all the way through) or if they pass it on or trash it.
Correct, but in the same way, you don’t know how may email subscribers actually read any given email (open does not equal read anymore than download equals listen).
Also, let’s consider the privacy implications here. Could you imagine the screams if I knew what you listened to and when you listened to it?
Do you know what people read the content on Web pages – or do you know how many times it was shown on some computer screen somewhere?
And I won’t even go intro the metrics of television and radio that make claims sillier than anything I’ve seen relating to Podcasting yet.
You can try methods to measure things a bit more closely, such as including a call to action in the audio track and waiting to see how many listeners actually bite.
You mean, make advertising accountable?
You mean, value a marketing piece based on what type of response you get and not some vague branding concept?
Reconcile with the fact there’s a lot you’re just not going to know.
But, from what I can figure out from my Podcasts, I’ll take this medium over anything else right now.
And a few questions about ClickZ
How is your Podcast strategy doing? And in the ClickZ network, you sell advertising CPM or CPA?