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Podcast Measurement Technical Guidelines

Last updated: May 2, 2024

About Podcast Measurement

Podcasts offer advertisers hyper-focused audiences that remain attentive even during ads. Podcast listeners have been shown to be the most loyal and engaged audience of any digital medium. 

The stakes for revenue in podcasting are growing, and the need to attract buyers will become more competitive over time. To foster a fair market for podcast businesses, IAB Tech Lab and the Podcast Technical Measurement Working Group developed and maintains guidelines for metrics used in podcasting. 

Measuring performance in podcast advertising is unique in the market of digital advertising. Podcast episodes are downloaded for consumption and measurement is based on server logs. This is in contrast to other digital mediums that typically maintain an open connection between a consumer’s device and the content server. This nuance produces different metrics in podcast advertising.

The challenge for podcast producers and distributors is to offer buyers a set of metrics that is consistently defined and measured equally across the podcast medium. This document provides an overview of ad delivery in podcasting and describes the technical process for measuring: downloads, audience, and ad delivery. IAB Tech Lab also offers a compliance program for companies who wish to signal to buyers their adherence to these guidelines.

With a consistent set of podcast advertising metrics, buyers and sellers can engage in a conversation about campaign strategy with confidence.

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