With the presidential election season finally over and encouraging reports on the COVID-19 front, there has been less urgency to the news in recent weeks. But listeners are still coming to podcasting. Podtrac says among the publishers and shows it measures, the News genre had the biggest week-to-week increase in downloads last week in what was otherwise tough period for some of podcasting’s largest categories.
Podtrac says News podcast downloads were up one percent from a week earlier. While not much of a gain, none of the others were in positive territory. True Crime podcast loads were flat week-to-week, while the other big genres all experienced declines. Science and Society & Culture were both down 13%, the largest drop, with declines also logged in genres including Comedy (-8%), Sports (-7%), Business (-6%), Arts (-6%), History (-5%), and Education (-1%).
Overall, Podtrac says downloads for the week of March 1 to 7 were down five percent from the previous week and down three percent from a year ago.
Podtrac earlier reported that iHeartRadio had the biggest audience and most streams and downloads of any of the publishers it measures during February. NPR remained in second, followed by the New York Times.
Four of the top 20 podcast publishers measured by Podtrac had month-to-month increases in their U.S. monthly audience in February. Among the top 20, downloads were decreased an average 13% between January and February although downloads were up two percent compared to a year earlier.