One neat thing that most modern podcast hosts have added to the analytics you have on your podcast is what devices or players people listen to your podcast on.

On Transistor, the host we use for all our podcasts over at Goodstuff.fm, it’s presented as a “Popular Apps – The most popular apps your audience listens with”:

Popular Apps - The most popular apps your audience listens with screenshot from Transistor.fm
Transistor.fm’s Podcast Analytics screenshot

We have a variety of podcasts at Goodstuff – a show for U2 fans, a podcast about baseball, adults reviewing kids movies, podcasts about podcasts – but I assumed that all the shows on our network would have listeners with the same methods of listening, more or less.

<cue dramatic music swell>

I was wrong.

Popular Podcast Players at our Podcast Network

There are a lot of variables that could affect how someone might listen to the shows on Goodstuff, such as:

  • Style or topic of show. (i.e. Tech focused vs non-tech might favour custom apps vs using built in apps or web version)
  • Hosts with varying social media following
  • Start date of show. Some have been around longer than others.
  • Stats not being reported properly due to the fact that podcast stats aren’t an exact science

Here’s how 8 shows on Goodstuff compare with their popular podcast players stats:

A few observations:

  • Two of my own shows, Daily(ish) and Show Me Your Mic, have a lot of Web Player usage.
  • Not every show has been submitted to Spotify – or was only recently added to their directory. So Spotify stats might be off because of that.
  • Some shows have more of a iOS focused audience or host(s) while others are more Android friendly. If someone shares a show within an app like Overcast, which is iOS only, it might have a larger audience there because hosts with Android only just can’t share within the iOS ecosystem.

What Should You Do with Your Podcast Stats?

So what? Should this affect how we market or publish our shows? What does the fact that Show Me Your Mic has a lot of web player listens vs The Goodstuff Morning Show’s popularity with Overcast listeners mean?

I don’t think anyone should be hyper focused on their podcast stats – spend more time recording and refining your audio than staring at stats please! It is worth looking at your stats every now and then to see if people are listening where and how you assume they are. For example, you might be surprised to find out you have a huge audience on Spotify. That might lead you to figuring out that someone with a large audience blogged or tweeted about your podcast and linked to your Spotify feed instead of your website.

In our case, we might want to consider changes to our website if that’s where most people are listening to a show. We might want to encourage folks to us an app to subscribe if we think they might not know how. Or maybe we could throw some other marketing efforts for other shows on our individual episode pages to draw listeners of one show to another show.

Show Me Your Stats!

I’d love to hear, via the comments below or on Twitter, what players are most common or popular among your podcast subscribers. Are you surprised by what you see or is it exactly what you expected to find?

This isn’t exactly a podcasting related video, but since I love all things Rogue Amoeba I figured it’d be fun to talk about their recently released SoundSource 4 for macOS.

What is SoundSource?

SoundSource is, in their words:

Change the volume and output device for individual apps. Adjust your Mac’s audio device settings and levels instantly, from anywhere. Even apply built-in and third-party audio effects to any audio on your Mac. It’s all possible right from your menu bar, with SoundSource.

My version: SoundSource allows you to control where audio is coming and going on your Mac.

Video Review of SoundSource 4


You can watch the video above or watch it on my YouTube channel.

Getting SoundSource 4

You can download a free trial version of SoundSource 4 from Rogue Amoeba’s website and then buy it for $29USD when you’re ready to purchase. The trial version is fully functional but audio quality starts to degrade after 20 minutes like most other Rogue Amoeba apps.

My Review

If you’re too impatient to watch a 17 minute video on a quality macOS app, then my Too Long Didn’t Watch opinion of SoundSource 4 is:

If you’ve never reached for the little speaker icon in your macOS menu bar, then SoundSource 4 isn’t for you. For everyone else, I think SoundSource 4 is worth picking up to make your Mac life sound sweeter.

Give the trial version a try and I’m sure you’ll find yourself upgrading to the full version.

This isn’t for finding your podcast in Google Play Music Podcasts (take a breath after that mouthful) – this is for the new Google Podcasts app/portal launching in 2019.

When it officially launches with an iOS app, this should be easier to figure out. And maybe there’s an easier way than this (let me know in the comments below!)

But for now…

Get Your Podcasts’s RSS Feed URL

Podcast Feed URL

Using Baseline as an example, I’d right click on the Subscribe to RSS Feed text and end up with this:

https://goodstuff.fm/baseline/feed.xml

Figure Out Your Podcast’s ID With Google Podcasts

Go to Google’s Podcast Publisher Tools page and paste your RSS Feed URL in and click Generate:

Google Podcast Publisher Preview dev tool

That super long URL it generates for you links to a page that will currently work on Android devices – here’s Baseline’s version – but doesn’t help anyone else out on iOS or a computer.

Google Podcasts Baseline

To get a link to your podcast in Google Podcasts, you need to copy everything after “podcasts” in the link generated for you.

So for Baseline the URL was this:

https://www.google.com/podcasts?feed=aHR0cHM6Ly9nb29kc3R1ZmYuZm0vYmFzZWxpbmUvZmVlZC54bWw%3D

So I need to copy this bunch of random letters and numbers:

?feed=aHR0cHM6Ly9nb29kc3R1ZmYuZm0vYmFzZWxpbmUvZmVlZC54bWw%3D

Then just simply paste that long string at the end of the URL for the new Google Podcasts portal, https://podcasts.google.com, like so:

https://podcasts.google.com?feed=aHR0cHM6Ly9nb29kc3R1ZmYuZm0vYmFzZWxpbmUvZmVlZC54bWw%3D

Which, when you go to that page from anything other than an Android device, should give you a nice view of your podcast in Google Podcasts like this:

Baseline in Google Podcasts

Android devices should open the Google Podcast app already installed on your device.

Thanks to James Cridland and Podnews for the heads up about Google Podcasts new portal.

By the time I hit publish on this, Google might have updated their Podcast Publisher tools – and hopefully figured out how to combine Google Play Music Podcasts with Google Podcasts so we only have 1 podcast portal to worry about at Google.

Podcasts can be a great way to tell your story – whether you like sharing gruesome murder stories, interviewing your celebrity friends, or just want to play D&D with your friends. There’s a podcast for pretty much any genre or interest you might have.

What you may not realize is that podcasts can also be used to help tell your story inside a company – to your employees, investors, volunteers, or maybe just your clients. There are lots of podcasts that are never on the Apple Podcasts charts or show up on Chartable (a great site to check out if you want to track your own podcast’s stats and rankings).

These are private podcasts. They might require a password to subscribe or listen to, and they’re very intentionally not publicized anywhere.

Restricted Area Do Not Enter sign. Photo by Kelli McClintock on Unsplash

Why would you want to create a private podcast?

These are a few of the reasons I’ve come across for why someone might want to create a private podcast:

  • A owner or CEO who wants to keep a growing company informed. A meeting that worked when the company was 15 employees becomes unmanageable now that there’s 350 employees spread across different timezones. Telling your team something in your own voice, with your emotions, is much better than a boring email.
  • Parents wanting to share audio of their kids with family without having to worry about how criminals or Facebook (aren’t they really the same thing?) might use the audio to mine for data on their family’s activities.
  • Clubs or communities where a private podcast might be a perk of membership.
  • A school classroom where the teacher wants to send audio out to the classroom or a class that does a podcast together.
  • Mastermind groups that send audio messages back and forth to each other.

How to create a private podcast

Most podcast hosting companies should be able to offer a private podcast feed or plan, but here are support docs for some podcast hosts I’m familiar with:

Most hosting plans will have a checkbox to not turn on the RSS feed which will make it harder to find your podcast or episodes. But it’s not really obscuring it or hiding it. And even private podcasts like Transistor.fm offers can still be shared outside of where you intend it to be heard, as they say in their support doc:

Anything that’s published on the public internet carries the risk of being discovered, and shared, by non-intended recipients. (Even when it’s password protected).
This is especially true for podcasts because audio files are downloaded by individuals to their podcast players.
This means anything you publish on your private podcast could be re-shared. Exercise your discretion when publishing content on private podcasts!

Transistor.fm

Some editing still required

Even a private podcast can benefit from great sounding audio. Unless your employees are contractually required to listen, you should make your podcast as enjoyable an experience for your listeners. Get in touch with me if you’d like some help with editing, production, or recording your private podcast.