Australian Podcast Ranker changes methodology to focus on ‘reach’ rather than downloads

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The Australian Podcast Ranker is changing its reporting metrics and methodology in a bid to provide more transparency.

From this month, individual podcasts will be ranked according to reach, rather than the number of downloads for the title.

Audience reach refers to number of individual monthly listeners, as defined by the IAB Podcast Measurement Guidelines.

If one consumer downloaded five episodes of a podcast title within a month, for example, this would count as five downloads, but one ‘listener’ in the reach metric. Downloads thus have a better read of the frequency of interactions with a podcast title, while the listener metric gives a more accurate picture of a podcast’s reach to different people.

The IAB Podcast Measurement Guidelines note the limitation of the listener, or reach, metric, is that most users access content on mobile devices, which means IP addresses change frequently. This can result in double counting users, or users being recycled, which leads to underreporting.

So in order to offer brands and media buyers more transparency, and the ability to make purchasing decisions on frequent interactions or wider reach, the Australian Podcast Ranker will now also provide the actual download and reach numbers for each title.

CRA’s CEO, Joan Warner, said this additional data will help accelerate the commercialisation of the podcast market.

“This new level of transparency will provide consistent and universal audience reach and frequency metrics for podcasting and will boost advertiser confidence in investing in this channel,” she said.

“Agencies will now have more information on the reach and frequency of each podcast to assist with planning and buying decisions, and podcast creators will have more tools to assist in monetisation of their content,” she added.

News Corp Australia’s general manager of commercial networks, Ainslee O’Brien, who was also a member of the CRA Podcast Committee, voiced her support for the evolution.

“News Corp has been a supporter of the Australian Podcast Ranker since its inception,” she said. “It is the only third-party verified source of podcast consumption in Australia and this next step will allow buyers and sellers to use the same language and provide their richer data clients are looking for.”

John Lynch, fellow Podcast Committee member and head of out-of-home and audio partnerships at media agency buying group Omnicom Media Group, also supported the change.

“The updated Podcast Ranker allows agencies and clients to make more informed decisions around investment into podcasting,” he said. “We welcome the changes and believe that it can only help to instil greater confidence in this growing area to the benefit of the industry.”

The August Australian Podcast Ranker will be out on Tuesday, September 14, and will employ this new approach.

Participating publishers in the Ranker currently include ARN/iHeartMedia, Audioboom, Babyology, Equity Mates Media, Kinderling Kids Radio, News Corp Australia, Nine, NOVA Entertainment, Podshape, Schwartz Media, Southern Cross Austereo, Sports Entertainment Network, Stitcher Media, TOFOP Productions, Wavelength Creative and West Australian Newspapers.

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