What is a Podcast Directory?
A podcast directory is a listing or database for podcasts. Directories are categorized by topics, category or subject matter and other themes. Podcast directories can also double as listening platforms – where you can listen to podcasts on the same platform.
Apple Podcast – “The Originator”
Apple Podcast is the original podcast directory. The word Podcast is a portmanteau, which is a combination of 2 words, Pod (short for iPod) and cast (short for broadcast). Podcasts became popular through the use of the iPod and Apple devices.
As iOS and Apple increased its market share across all products (iPhone, iPad etc.), so did the consumption and growth of podcasts. Apple is years ahead in influence as the originator, has the most global reach and for these reasons and more, Apple Podcast is the biggest and most important podcast directory.
A New Player
While Apple is still the primary platform where people consume podcasts, there’s been new entrants to the market. Spotify is making a lot of moves in the podcast industry with the purchase of Gimlet and Anchor and most recently Parcast. With this type of money moves, it’s almost certain there will be a lot of think pieces. And rightfully so, because Spotify (and Pandora) have their eyes set on cutting into and taking over Apple’s market share of Podcast distribution and consumption.
Everyone is focused on what this means for us podcasters and to be honest, it doesn’t change much. We will benefit from the improvements Spotify will make in their quest to make podcasts more discoverable and consumed more on their platform.
The Spotify activities should not be a sign or lead you to question whether to only promote your show on Spotify. In fact, I caution indie Caribbean American podcasters to not focus on one platform based on the buzz of Spotify. Especially since Spotify isn’t widely available in the Caribbean. Instead look at your data to see where most of the listens are coming from.
The “Big 5” Podcast Directories
As niche indie podcasters, we need to give our audience the option to reach us on as many platforms as possible (unless Spotify or Apple gives you or I an exclusive deal). This means promoting your podcast on the “Big 5”:
- Apple (Globally)
- Spotify (US and European Audiences only, Android users);
- Google Podcast (Globally, Android users)
- iHeart Radio
- Stitcher Radio
If you want, you can supplement the list with other podcast apps. However, I’d caution not promoting too many apps because it can get confusing. Which is why from a marketing standpoint I focus on the four of the five because that’s what my podcast data says most of my listens/downloads come from.
The Case For Smaller “Niche” Directories
Niche podcast directories categorize podcast in way that the larger podcast directories and listening platforms like the Big 5 do not. Niche and smaller podcast directories like the Caribbean Podcast Directory offer other options for your podcasts to be discovered by people you are trying to reach. They can also help a podcaster expand more into a niche.
Discoverability is Key
In summary, as a niche indie podcast producer distribution and discoverability is key but at the same time we don’t want to confuse our audience. When promoting shows the best to offer options but keep it simple. Three is a good number and deciding which 3 should be based on the data showing where people are listening to your show. From what I can see for now, the acquisitions and movement in the podcast industry will not affect niche indie podcasts as much, so long as we are building a strong community with our audience.
What are your Podcast Directories?
- What are your preferred podcast directories and why?
- Have you considered listing your show in a Niche podcast directory?