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March Madness Kept Sports Podcasts In Win Column Last Week.

Podtrac reports week-to-week downloads climbed four percent last week among the publishers it measures. And compared to a year ago, downloads were up 61%. March Madness is likely a big reason why the Sports genre was one of last week’s top performers. Podtrac says downloads in that genre increased two percent week-to-week – and they were up 122% from the same week in 2021, the biggest year-to-year jump of any category.

The Science genre had the best week-to-week growth rate. Podtrac says it was up 14% last week among the publishers it measures. Also growing were News (+10%), Arts (+6%), Religion & Spirituality (+5%), and Business (+4%), while History (-10%), True Crime (-3%), and Society & Culture (-3%) all had down weeks.

Podtrac earlier reported that iHeartRadio remained at the top of Podtrac’s ranking of top publishers for February with a ten percent jump in its unique U.S. reach and a two percent increase in its streams and downloads. NPR was second, followed by Wondery, the New York Times, and the Walt Disney Company – which includes podcasts from ESPN and ABC Audio.

Overall, Podtrac reports the average publisher had a six percent month-over-month increase in their U.S. unique monthly audience last month. And compared to a year earlier, February 2022’s unique reach for the top 20 publishers was up 18% versus February 2021.

In terms of downloads, Podtrac says global downloads for the top 20 publishers overall were down two percent month-over-month during February. But they were up 32% compared to the download numbers from a year earlier.

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