As expected, April was steady in terms of growth. Technically, the monthly downloads dropped by 1.5%, but there was also one fewer day in April compared to March.
If you look at average daily downloads, it actually grew by 1.7%.
So, I’ll call it a wash.
As I predicted last month, April was going to be about the same, and I predict the same in May. I don’t expect to see a growth spurt until June when I already have some promotions lined up.
A few months ago, I mentioned that my focus wasn’t on growth at the moment but waiting for the sales pipeline to fill before I focused on growth again.
It’s a good problem to have.
The good news is that my inventory is pretty much 100% filled right now. I actually can’t do promo swaps right now because I have no inventory to trade.
March and April have had record earnings, which is going to set me up for my next major marketing push in June.
The big news in April was more personal. I moved into a new apartment. A much larger place with a room I can devote as a studio.
As of the day I’m writing this, I’m going to be installing acoustical tiles in my studio.
This has been an across-the-board improvement in my work environment and quality of life. I have a great view of the Fox River, I can hear geese outside almost all the time, my windows are south facing giving me a ton of sunlight, and I have lots of fresh air.
In addition, I have a gigabit internet connection and just a much better work environment. This might not sound like it is podcasting-related, but I assure you, it is.
For much of May, I’m going to be preparing my June marketing push. Talking to other podcasters to line up feed drops and promotions.
I’m also ready to finally hire an assistant to help with much of busy work associated with show promotion.
1) I had a big spike in downloads in late December and early January. It started to level off in late January, so I assumed that February was going to be soft, at least for the first week or two. It was.
2) February has three fewer days than January, which is about 10% fewer days.
Even though this is a pretty big drop, I’m not panicking for a few reasons.
If you averaged out the number of days in the month, the drop was only 15%.
Monthly numbers go up and down. Q1 2023 is still looking to be well above Q4 2022.
Downloads decreased, but my total audience didn’t really go down. I have a very large back catalog of evergreen episodes. When I get a new listener, I often see a spike in downloads as they download older content. However, that will eventually level out to just one download a day.
I didn’t run any promotions or ads in February.
Basically, February was almost the same as December, which was the first month where I hit one million downloads per month.
I’m also not hyper-focused on growth at the moment. The vast majority of my ad inventory is currently unsold.
Doubling my downloads right now just means I’m increasing my unsold inventory.
I’m not going to turn down more listeners, but until I can get my sales pipeline filled, there isn’t much point.
I’ve just joined a new podcast network (Glassbox Media), and they are working on filling the sales pipeline. I’ve had to deal with sales in the past, and I’m aware that it doesn’t happen overnight.
The pipeline is starting to be filled, so again, I’m not panicking.
Once the sales pipeline looks strong, I’ll go back into growth mode and probably will be investing even more into podcast promotion. I’m guessing I’ll be back into growth mode within three months. When I do, I’ll have more resources at my disposal.
The big plan for March is to launch an ad-free paid subscription version of the podcast.
This will be more difficult than normal because I put baked-in ads in the episodes for the first 18 months. So I have hundreds of episodes I have to go back and fix.
It isn’t particularly difficult to do, but it is just a lot of busy work. I figure I have 500 episodes I have to go back and fix.
As an incentive to get people to subscribe, I’m going to launch a new weekly show called Everything Everywhere Weekly (original, I know).
The format will be similar to PTI (Pardon the Interruption) on ESPN. It will be myself and a guest giving short takes on the week’s episodes and a few shows from the back catalog.
If it proves popular, I might release it to the public with ads two weeks after the subscribers get access.
I’ve been focused on growth since I launched the show. I’m certainly not abandoning growth, but I need to round out other aspects of the business.
My 2023 growth goals are still in place and I think they are achievable, but to hit those numbers I’ll need more resources, which means sales.
The growth this month was really solid, especially considering the growth I saw in December.
The only downside is that the growth appeared to have leveled off during the last 10 days. Absent another traffic surge, I assume traffic will probably dip in February, if for no other reason than there are 3 fewer days in February. (~10% fewer days)
I’m reaching a point where I’m going to have to start being more aggressive with promoting the podcast. I’m in an odd spot right now where I moved to a new network, and I’m waiting for advertising to ramp up and for revenue to start rolling in.
I’m probably going to have to find new ways to promote the podcast beyond what I’ve been doing before. Getting even a few hundred new subscribers won’t move the needle the way it did before.
That being said, based on the performance of similar podcasts and YouTube channels, I believe there is a LOT of room for growth. Easily enough to grow the show another 10x, given enough time and money.