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Don’t Overlook the Details: Why Podcast Metadata Matters More Than You Think

Are you curious about which podcast categories are the most popular among listeners? So was I.

That’s why I decided to take a closer look at the top 200 most listened-to podcasts on Spotify in four countries: The Netherlands, the US, the UK, and Sweden.

My goal was to identify which categories were the most popular among listeners. However, as I began my analysis, I quickly discovered a concerning trend: many podcasts lacked proper category labeling. In today’s attention economy where podcasts rely heavily on algorithms to reach their audience, it’s strange to see so many podcasts without proper categorization. In this article, I’ll share my findings and explain why proper labeling is crucial for podcasters to succeed in the highly competitive world of podcasting.

The above graph displays the distribution of category tag usage among charting podcast shows on Spotify. It visualizes how many of these shows used none, one, two, or three category tags.

It is surprising that a significant percentage of shows are still using no categories, as category tags can help listeners find and discover new podcasts more easily. Additionally, it is also surprising that many shows have not taken advantage of labeling subcategories, as this can further refine the search results for listeners and make it easier for them to find relevant content.

It’s interesting to see that there is a difference in categorization labeling between shows ranking at different levels. It seems that shows ranking lower, below 100, have paid less attention to maximizing their categorization labeling.

In conclusion, the data suggest that there is still room for optimizing your labeling strategy in order to maximize your show’s visibility and success. This can be achieved by paying more attention when uploading your shows and episodes, and by considering re-uploading your shows and simultaneously reconsidering your metadata.

By taking the time to carefully consider your categorization labeling and metadata, you can increase your chances of being discovered by new listeners and improve your ranking on podcast platforms. So, if you haven’t already, it’s worth reviewing your current labeling strategy and making any necessary adjustments to ensure that you are making the most of this important tool.

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