Edison Research is launching a new companion report to its Edison Podcast Metrics updates on what the most listened-to podcasts are. The new report will feature actual download numbers. Edison is not saying how it is getting those, but it is saying what it is not doing. The company says after months of research, it developed a new method of determining downloads that does not rely on a redirect or involve delivery of log files.
"While our survey of 20,000 podcast listeners each year provides the most complete look at the totality of actual listening to podcasts, download data will provide deeper information to subscribers, especially for smaller and short-run shows,” said Edison Research President Larry Rosin in the announcement.
Edison Podcast Metrics is a survey of weekly podcast listeners. The company says surveys are performed every day as it collects information from respondents about all podcasts they listened to in the last week. Because it is a survey-based methodology not relying on server log data to track which shows were streamed or downloaded, it allows Edison to report a podcast ranker that is independent of which shows or networks subscribe.
The new companion report is the latest update for Podcast Metrics. In July, Edison implemented a “significant” increase in the number of weekly podcast listeners that it surveys for the Podcast Metrics reports. The total number of surveys increased 150%, meaning that each quarter Edison will conduct 5,000 interviews among people who say they have listened to at least one podcast in the week before they are contacted. By expanding the size of the sample of weekly podcast listeners it surveys, the company said Edison Podcast Metrics will have the ability to examine more cuts of the data, to generate detailed data on far more shows, and that will lead to more frequent reporting.