Podcasting listening continued to see its post-holiday growth last week, helped along by a flurry of new releases. Podtrac reports among publishers and shows it measures, downloads were up two percent for the week of Jan. 11-17 compared to the prior week. It was the third consecutive week of growth in the number of downloads.
Listeners were a bit more high-minded as the Arts category had the biggest week-to-week growth in downloads. Podtrac says shows in that genre were up 11% last week. Also showing growth was Society & Culture (+9%), Comedy (+4%), News (+4%), Business (+2%) while both the True Crime and Sports genres were down 6% last week.
Podtrac earlier reported that the iHeartPodcast Network remained the biggest podcast publisher in December among the entities it measured. With a portfolio of more than five hundred podcasts, iHeart had 26.8 million unique listeners in the U.S. last month, with more than 243 million streams and downloads. NPR was second, followed by the New York Times, Wondery and PRX.
All the top 20 publishers had a decrease in their U.S. monthly audience in December compared to November, according to Podtrac. Among the top ten publishers, the average U.S. unique monthly audience was down 13% month-over-month. In terms of downloads, the top ten publishers had an average 7% decline between November and December, reflecting the holiday listening trends.