Top Three Lesser Known Awesome Podcasts – Naomi 2019

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Sawbones

From the lovely people over at Maximum Fun, Sawbones is hosted by a hilarious married couple, only one of whom is a Family Medicine doctor. Each week they talk about some of the more bizarre, silly, and disgusting anecdotes in modern — and slightly less modern — medicine. Fascinating and funny.

The Adventure Zone

The Adventure Zone is an adventure actual play podcast very loosely based on Dungeons & Dragons (there are elevators in these fantasy lands, for starters). This is another gem from the Maximum Fun network and is hosted by three brothers: Justin, Travis, and Griffin McElroy, and their father Clint. They are prone to fits of contagious laughter and there is something especially endearing about their regular admissions that they have forgotten at least one of the pertinent rules.

It is best to start at the beginning of a new quest. Each quest lasts about 10 episodes.

Ronna & Beverly

I will never stop recommending this podcast, even though there haven’t been any new episodes since mid-2017, when the pair were scheduled to do a live show and canceled under mysterious circumstances. Don’t fret, though. There are still over 160 episodes of Jessica Chaffin and Jamie Denbo’s characters, Ronna Glickman and Beverly Ginsberg, the “best-selling co-authors of You’ll Do A Little Better Next Time: A Guide to Marriage and Re-marriage for Jewish Singles.”

Each week they discuss current events, their personal lives — especially their disappointing adult children — with each other and various celebrity guests.

To get started, listen to A Beginner’s Guide to Ronna & Beverly.

Top Three Lesser Known Awesome Podcasts – Milo 2019

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The Dream

This show is all about the rise of multi-level marketing and why it has become so popular in today’s culture. Incredibly good storytelling that shows how MLM’s developed from way back in the early 1900’s to now. They go into all different aspects of their development, from early Tupperware parties to the 80’s Amway FTC lawsuits.

Tape OP Podcast

Larry Crane interviews prominent members of the music industry about what they do and how they do it. I love hearing about the creative process of artists and audio engineers and with a veteran of the industry asking the questions, it’s super insightful.

The Anthropocene Reviewed

John Green reviews elements of our culture from recent to the distant past on a five-star scale. Thought the premise sounds bizarre, John’s great storytelling and off-kilter presentation makes this show an incredible listen. Pairing two very different stories together every episode, you get a really cool perspective on our very strange very human world.

 

Top Three Lesser Known Awesome Podcasts – Ian 2019

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Doctor Death

Doctor Death is the cringyestt podcast I’ve ever listened to. The Wondery people put this podcast together beautifully. Even though Doctor Death is a terribly sad story, I still think it was a magnificent example of story telling.

Jocko Podcast

Jocko Podcast is full of stories from fascinating military veterans of the past. His series with John Stryker Meyer, a veteran of the secret war in Laos and Vietnam, was especially fascinating. The episodes to start are as follows:

180 | 181 | 182 | 186

It’s not just war, this podcast speaks well on leadership and being a good person overall.

Invest Like a Boss

Johnny and Sam discuss investing in a way that is reminiscent of the Adventure Capitalist, Jim Rodgers. They travel to countries all over the world and interview interesting financial people. They have a NO/BS approach to investing which I love.

Investing shows are generally terrible because so much of the industry is based on making it seem complicated. These guys make investing simple and understandable. I love it.

How to Set Up a Podcast Recording Studio

By | Build Your Own Podcast, Tutorials for Clients | No Comments

In this tutorial, I’m going to set up a podcasting studio. Once it’s set up, I’ll create a test recording using the audio recording software called Audio Hijack.

First, we will set up two microphones and two microphone stands. Then we will plug them both into a single Macbook Pro using the USB cables. Once we have our hardware set up, we will go into the computer and make a test recording. We will capture the audio via a software program called Audio Hijack.

Benefits of this podcast recording system:

  • Split track recordings across each of the podcast participants
  • Low cost (I think the microphones are about $60 each)
  • Boom mics and pop filters help ensure great audio quality

In the video above, I try to explain the podcast recording setup as quickly as possible. My goal is that the watcher can learn to set up the recording equipment, operate the recording software and share the recorded files with people via some file sharing process.

how to set up a podcast recording studio

To get this setup, you only need to buy two things:

Microphone (x2)

how to set up a recording studio - podcast microhpone

Audio Technica 2100

 

Stand + Pop Filters (x2)

microphone boom arm for a podcast recording studio

Stand + Pop Filters

 

Audio Recording Software

Audio Hijack – My favorite podcast Recording Software

 

Podcasting Microphone Stand

In this tutorial, I set up the microphones using the boom arm microphone stands.

The boom arms are entirely optional.

The Audio Technia ATR-2100 microphones come with small little tripod stands which work perfectly fine.

Why I Like the Audio Technica ATR-2100

The ATR-2100 only records audio from directly in front of the microphone.

If you’re recording and a loud motorcycle drives by outside, you won’t hear it on this microphone. Even if the motorcycle sound really loud to you, the microphone is great at not recording that.

Don’t use these:

  • Blue Yeti
  • Snowball

Why Split Track Recordings

The reason I like split track recordings is because they empower the people in post production to make your podcasts sound better.

If there is a dog barking in the background of one microphone, the producer can go in and edit that out exceptionally cleanly.

 

Have any questions? 

Please let me know in the comments below.

How to Use Third Party Plugins on Podcast Websites

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Podcast Websites is a company that offers software as a service to podcasters. At the core of the technology, they are simply a WordPress website with a lot of built in tools. I don’t recommend this service for most people because you will be forever married to a third party service if you build your website on their platform.

To me it’s better to build a site in which you own all your intellectual property. For that reason, I recommend WordPress and its host of third party, open source software providers.

None-the-less, as we do a lot of client work, I’m forced to learn many different systems.

Here’s how to go around the Podcast Websites service to get at the core technology. You’ll want to do this if your redirects are NOT working, for whatever reason.

Here we access Pretty Links by Going Around Podcast Websites dashboard

First, we want to access third party plugins:

How to Use Third Party Plugins on Podcast Websites

Next, we want to find the plugin that does the job we need to be done. In this example, we are setting up a Pretty Link:

How to Use Third Party Plugins on Podcast Websites

Now their custom dashboard CSS makes it look like a tool which they built. They didn’t we can thank Pretty Links for that. Here we use Pretty Links to set up a functioning redirect.

How to Use Third Party Plugins on Podcast Websites

A Note on Switching Costs

After diving into the Podcast Websites sales funnel and working on technical problems related to a website that utilizes it, I feel it’s extra important to make a note about why I don’t think this is a good solution for those long term focused businesses.

  1. Fake Try it for Free offering
    1. As I was experimenting with trying their software, they don’t actually have a try it for free option. They have a pay for it now and if you want to not use it you can cancel your payment plan. This seems a bit dishonest to me.
  2. They Lock People In
    1. As you develop your podcast, this software develops your site in a way that will make it very painful to switch away from their service. They blend their third party tools in with the WordPress core technology. Therefore if you ever want to switch it will be technically challenging for your migration team. That means it will cost you a lot to stop using it.
    2. WordPress at it’s core is free Podcasting Websites is $100 a month. Unless I’m missing something, they simply own all your software (your domain too?) and charge you to utilize something that is close to free.*
  3. Challenging to Use
    1. The back end is very challenging to navigate and buggy. Though WordPress has similar issues, our team produces hundreds of podcasts a year. Our experience with Podcast Websites is similar to podcasting with Wix, SquareSpace and Shopify. All these content management systems (CMS) are NOT ideal for podcasting.

* – There is value in having packaged software. If they select and configure a collection of open source software, there is value in that. But this could be a single priced option if it were an honest service. For example, $800 to setup email trap software, contact forms and theme design

 

Thank you for reading. Please let me know if you have any questions or comments. If someone from Podcast Websites reads this, please let me know if I’m misunderstanding something.

The Most Important Podcast Directories of 2019 – Submission Details

By | Build Your Own Podcast, Discussing Podcasting, Podcast Directories | 18 Comments

This list of podcast directories and apps is ordered from most important to least important. iTunes provides about 80% of the downloads. If you’re short on time, iTunes is unquestionably the most important of the podcast directories. But if you’ve got 15 minutes, you might as well submit to all of them.

The Most Important Podcast Directories:

  1. iTunes – Submit your RSS feed here. We’ve got screenshots of the process here.
  2. Stitcher – Fill out the form here and accept the terms and conditions. A Stitcher team member will contact you shortly after receiving your form to get started.
  3. Spotify – Login to your Libsyn account and follow the process here.
  4. Google Play Music – Google Play is here! Huzzah! Submit your podcast here. Or you can submit through your Libsyn account. Follow the process here.
  5. Pandora – Pandora for podcasts is here! Submit your podcasts here.
  6. SoundCloud – Create a SoundCloud account here. You can then set up an automatic RSS download to SoundCloud via Libsyn. Follow the process here.
  7. TuneIn – Fill out the form and submit your podcast here.
  8. iHeartRadio – Login to your Libsyn account and follow the process here.
  9. RadioPublic – Add your RSS feed here. Verify and accept the terms and conditions.
  10. YouTube – Convert your podcast to a video that can be uploaded to your YouTube channel. Use your show art, or episode art and upload along with the .mp3 file to create the video file. Learn how to do this here.
  11. PodDirectory – Go to the submit page here and enter your RSS feed and hit submit. PodDirectory will grab your feed and add your podcast to their site.
  12. Acast – Scroll down and hit the Add Your Show button. Check I want to join Acast as a non-hosted podcast and fill out the form here.
  13. Pocket Casts – Submit your RSS feed here.
  14. DoubleTwist – To submit a new podcast enter your RSS feed and show details here.
  15. Player.FM – Go here and fill out your show’s information or you can email [email protected] with Show Name, RSS Feed URL and description.
  16. PodKicker – An android platform. It’s hyper-simple to submit your podcast RSS feed here.
  17. PodBean – Create an account here to submit your podcast. Enter your RSS feed and hit submit.
  18. Radio.com – Login to your Libsyn account and follow the process here. Or fill out the form here to submit your podcast.
  19. Listen Notes – Check the app here to make sure your show is there. If it isn’t submit it here.
  20. Deezer – Create an account here to submit your podcast.
  21. Downcast – This pulls from the iTunes API so all you need to do once you submit your RSS feed to iTunes is check the app here to make sure your show is there.
  22. Podcast Addict – This pulls from the iTunes API so all you need to do once you submit your RSS feed to iTunes is check the app here to make sure your show is there.
  23. Overcast – This pulls from the iTunes API so all you need to do once you submit your RSS feed to iTunes is check the app here to make sure your show is there.
  24. iCatcher – This pulls from the iTunes API so all you need to do once you submit your RSS feed to iTunes is check the app here to make sure your show is there.
  25. Windows Phone 8.1 – Windows Phone 8.1 uses a Bing-enabled search mechanism to locate podcasts.  To improve the search results of your podcast, add “feed:podcast” to your keywords tag within your podcasts RSS feed.  Podcasts can also be located by entering the RSS feed directly into the podcast app search window.
  26. Improve Bing-Enabled Podcast Search Results – By using Webmaster Tools, you can tell Bing about your site. In return, Bing Webmaster Tools tells you how well your site is performing in Bing and Bing-powered search and keeps you up to date about issues we see on your site. To inform us about sitemaps or RSS feeds, including those containing podcasts, follow these steps:
    1. If you haven’t done so already, sign up with Bing Webmaster Tools.
    2. Add the site that hosts the Podcast RSS/feed and verify ownership of the site.
    3. Use the Submit Sitemap tool and submit the full RSS feed URL containing the links to your podcasts. (Within a few hours, you’ll see whether Bing successfully downloaded your sitemap or feed so that it can be indexed.)

Potentially important podcast directories we don’t know enough about right now:

  1. Podbay.fm – (Coming Soon)

Removed due to inactivity:

  • BlackBerry –  Submit your Feed here

Get Featured on The Feed

Podcast DirectoriesHere’s the info to get featured, just follow the below. And if you have a 30-second promo of your show, I’d love to play it.

The soul of this series is to share your show as well as to share your experience with podcasting, as it tends to inspire and educate the community as a whole 🙂

Send a message to Elsie Escobar:

[email protected]

With an attached PLAIN TEXT file (.txt) with your answers to the following questions:

Here is a list of questions:

If you don’t want to answer some of them, please feel to skip. If you want to offer more insight about anything you think might serve other podcasters, please feel free to share.

When did you start podcasting?
Why did you start podcasting?
What’s your show about?
What’s your podcasting set-up? Hardware, software, CMS, etc.
How have you promoted your podcast?
What do you know now that you wish you knew when you started?
You can simply reply to this email with your answers or send along a text file. Whatever is easier for you 🙂

For promotional love need:

  1. Your website
  2. Best way to connect with you: twitter/facebook page/email
  3. iTunes podcast link
  4. Podcast artwork: please attach podcast artwork or provide direct link for your artwork (600 x600 up to 1400 x 1400)
  5. Anything that you are currently promoting (if anything)

Conclusion

Updated January 20th, 2017

Hat tip to Karsten Aichholz for the heads up on the broken iTunes link.
Hat tip to Paul Colaianni of The Overwhelmed Brain for support with building this list.
Hat tip to Niels Kaastrup-Larsen of Top Traders Unplugged for the Pocket Casts recommendation.
Hat tip to Dominic Labriola of Real Shift Radio for the valuable insight on Spreaker and iHeartRadio. We’ve decided they didn’t make the cut in 2020. Their free plan has limited uploads.

Our Top Podcasts of 2018

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Now, what you’ve all be waiting for. Our top podcasts of 2018. As podcast producers, we listen to a lot of shows. This is an opportunity for you to see what our favorites have been. Enjoy!


Ian’s Top Podcasts

Joe Rogan Experience

The variety of guests is what I like so much about this podcast.  Joe selects guests that range from cage fighters to quantum physicists. I admire his consistency and his volume of output.

iteration

To me, programming is a form of poetry. John and JP do a great job of describing the way programmers think as they break down various books on developing software.

This one is not for everyone. If you don’t care about the details of software development philosophy, don’t even bother giving it a try. If you’re interested in taking a deep dive into the beauty of software, Iteration is a good one.

The Tim Ferriss Show

Again, the range of guests on Tim’s show is fantastic. His guests range from James Cameron to LeBron James to successful eCommerce store entrepreneurs. At times I’m not a fan of the formats of his episodes, but I like the fact that he is experimenting with podcasting as a medium. He’ll do episodes in which he isn’t even there with his guests. I think Thim just sends questions and the guests go over the topics on their own.

If you’re interested in taking an unconventional look at what a podcast can be, the Tim Ferriss Show is worth a listen.

Caliphate

Caliphate is a podcast that blew me away. This one requires no explanation. It’s a nine part series done in excellent narrative form. The creator seeks to answer the questions, “Who is joining ISIS?”

Akimbo: A Podcast from Seth Godin

Seth is one of my favorite people who offer advice and ideas to those seeking to do things that are hard. This podcast is a great one to start at the beginning and catch up on. Each episode has an insightful idea that seems to come from some ancient tome that was recently dusted off in the basement of a great library somewhere in an ancient European library.


Matt’s Top Podcasts

On the Media

This has been a favorite of mine for years. I appreciate their careful focus on how news and content is delivered to the public – how it effects our collective understanding of issues. In my mind, it’s one of few media watchdog-type sources that remains inventive and indispensable in today’s oversaturated news ecosystem. Lastly, I really like the show’s hosts Brooke Gladstone and Bob Garfield, both of whom are sharp interviewers who don’t relent to evasive interviewees.

99 Percent Invisible

I’m not a design nerd, but the stories they dig up for this long-running podcasts almost always keep me listening until the end. The show does a brilliant job of zooming into the small corners of our everyday lives and telling a story about street curbs or NBA jersey designs. But they also look at huge aspects of our world that we simply lose sight of. The history of America’s Chinatowns is one that does this well, and is also one of my recent favorites. The host Roman Mars is engaging and his voice has a real soothing quality about it.

ArtCenter’s Change Lab

This show continues to surprise me with its incredibly diverse subject matter and guests. At its base, Change Lab explores artists’ and designer’s creativity, creative process, and their general philosophy. The host, ArtCenter College President Lorne Buchman, aims to unpack his guest’s experiences and the transformations that have molded their creativity and subsequent work. It’s enlightening, inspiring, and I often find myself yearning to create in a bolder way.


Milo’s Top Podcasts

ReplyAll

I’m a dweeb who has had computers and the internet as part of my life for as long as I can remember. This show brings out some of the super strange quirky and interesting elements of the internet in a really engaging way. From full on crime journalism to trying to explain memes to their baby-boomer boss, this show has everything that I like. Plus the show really keeps in a lot of the personality of the people involved and I feel like that puts it on a different level than a lot of podcasts that try to polish their shows for a “mass appeal”.

Radiolab

This is obviously a classic podcast. Killer audio production, fantastic story telling, and good journalism. I remember growing up and listening to NPR and loving this show when I was in middle and high school and a while ago when I was working as a window washer, this was the podcast I binged while I was working. Certainly keeps the wonder and intrigue in the minutia of life for me.

The thing that keeps me coming back to this show is that it stays pretty agnostic as far as morality is concerned, never getting too preachy. The two hosts seem to have a pretty different view of how the world works and should work, and the way they butt heads during episodes really makes my internal dialogue seem a lot less crazy, but also normalizes dialogue about tough topics between people.

Adventure Zone

This is the outlier, but it’s fantastic. This is a D&D podcast by the hosts of My Brother, My Brother And Me, with this one including their dad, Clint, who clearly shares their strange sense of humor.

The show spans multiple different arcs and storylines, always spending enough time in the lore and the story, but also diverging into the hilarious and stupid often to great effect. Even if you don’t like D&D, if you like fantasy stories, comedy shows, and great storytelling, you will like this podcast.


Naomi’s Top Podcasts

My Brother My Brother and Me

I could listen to them every single day. In fact, I already do. These three brothers answer Yahoo Answers queries off the cuff and with little to no seriousness. Other recurring bits include advice on haunted dolls, horses of all sizes, and fast food company press releases. They always have the capacity to give each other the giggles and I can’t help but laugh along. Maybe not the best podcast for the morning commute, as I inevitably ending up laughing loudly out loud while standing very alone.

Ronna & Beverly

This comedy podcast unites galpals Ronna and Beverly, a pair of hilarious Jewish mothers from the greater Boston area. Each week they discuss the repercussions of their failed marriages and their children’s gifts and shortcomings. They often have guests on the show and will spend most of the interview talking over both each other and the guest.

Episodes are introduced by Beverly singing the word podcast to a well-known pop song. This is a near constant day-maker and also a choking hazard. Listen while eating at your own risk.

Serial

Serial is an investigative journalism podcast hosted by Sarah Koenig, narrating a nonfiction story over multiple episodes. The series was co-created and is co-produced by Koenig and Julie Snyder and developed by This American Life. The third season of Serial plays out like a murder mystery novel that you cannot put down and wouldn’t want to anyways. This year’s theme centers on the judicial system in the United States and touches on too many timely topics to count. Koenig is a fabulous storyteller and the work she is doing is important.

If you missed Seasons 1 and 2, they do not need to be enjoyed in order and are certainly worth a listen, too!

Natural MD Radio

Finally, here is someone who is a health professional who feels like a friend and speaks like one, too. Dr. Aviva Romm is doing all the research for women and children on topics like the dangers of plastics in household products, the increasing rate of cesarean sections globally, and the dangers of fad detox diets. Not only is her podcast extremely educational, it is both relevant and relatable.


Sylvia’s Top Podcasts

Oprah’s SuperSoul Conversations

Probably my most listened-to show. Oprah has the amazing ability to go deep with her guests (I mean, she IS Oprah) and bring out their HUMAN-NESS no matter how famous they are. It is fascinating for me to hear from typical “spiritual gurus” to athletes like Dwayne Wade about their relationship with life and how that relationship has contributed to their success. It is interesting to me that all of these people have deeply positive relationships with the unknown, but the listener can relate to many of their stories through Oprah’s interview questions and comments.

Don’t Keep Your Day Job

For people like me, who interested in living a life outside of the 9am-5pm lifestyle, this podcast is a must! The host, Cathy, breaks it down and gives extremely tangible tips, tricks, and advice on how to live your non-mainstream best life (Hint: a lot of it has to do with the conversations we have inside our heads). Cathy is also hilarious, and her guests are awesome! Not only is her content extremely engaging and fun, but it actually works. This podcast has functioned as an extremely positive and support community to help me live the out-of-the-box lifestyle that I have today.

She’s Got Moxie

So this show is one of our clients, but I also have to say, their women’s entrepreneurship content really rocks! Every week, business coach Joy Chudacoff, interviews a different amazing woman and business and they really share so many gems and pieces of wisdom about how they built their business empire. I love that Joy doesn’t just focus on the easy parts of business, she also asks each of her guests about the challenges that they’ve had to overcome and how they have dealt with issues on their business or career journey. Love the content, and love the guests!

Well Women Radio

This is a new podcast that is about women’s health and hormone balance. It always surprises me how little we as women learned about our bodies in [most] schools, and we’ve begun to normalize certain hormonal issues. Truthfully, through a healthy diet and some lifestyle changes, we can reverse a lot of our own health issues and have a stronger base for beating fertility issues and hormonal cancers. This podcast makes these health techniques applicable, easy, and digestible, for the busy woman who wants to feel her best.

Podcasting Secrets – Miles Beckler has a Conversation with Ian and V

By | Discussing Podcasting, Podcasting Process, Podcasting Questions, Podcasting World | No Comments

We met with Melanie and Miles Beckler while they had a minute to rest in Incline Village, Nevada. We enjoyed some sandwiches on a few picnic chairs on the beach at Lake Tahoe and went for a trip to the spa. Somewhere in-between, Miles took a minute to invite us on his YouTube channel to discus podcasting. Here is the show:

Thank You for the conversation Miles Beckler

Miles Beckler has been doing online marketing for a long time. He works with his wife, Melanie Beckler who run a website called Ask Angels. Ask Angels is a whole library of spiritual education and a lot of stuff I don’t honestly understand. Bottom line, these guys are great with online marketing and developing businesses around content marketing.

Freedom Podcasting Miles Beckler

We really enjoy spending time with them. The first time we met was on the second Nomad Cruise. The cruise was a lot of fun. We then had a power day in Portugal. The next time we met up, it was in Sedona, Arizona. We made two movies that day, one for Melanie’s channel, the other for my own.

I hope this conversation is useful for you. Thank you for watching.

2017 Podcast Directories and Apps

By | Build Your Own Podcast, FAQ, How Podcasting Works | One Comment

Podcast platforms that Freedom Podcasting submits client RSS feeds to:

  1. ApplePodcasts/iTunes*
  2. Stitcher*
  3. Spotify*
  4. Soundcloud*
  5. TuneIn*
  6. Google Play Music*
  7. PodDirectory*
  8. Player.FM*
  9. RadioPublic*
  10. DoubleTwist*
  11. iHeartRadio*
  12. acast
  13. Pocket Casts
  14. PodBean
  15. Downcast
  16. PodcastAddict
  17. Overcast
  18. iCatcher
  19. Listen Notes

*  Must be individually submitted.

All other platforms will pickup your feed from iTunes data.

How do I Find My Show’s Podcast Subscriber Numbers on iTunes?

By | How Podcasting Works | No Comments

iTunes doesn’t provide podcast subscriber numbers. Let’s talk about how we can get an idea for how many podcast subscribers a show has.

Subscriber Counts

How many subscribers do I have on iTunes?

iTunes doesn’t provide analytics to podcasters. We can get an idea for how many subscribers by measuring the spikes in downloads.

What is a Podcast Subscriber?

A podcast subscriber is someone who sets their phone to automatically download the show when it becomes available. Because the subscribers automatically download the shows, we can assume that the spikes in podcast traffic are related to the number of subscribers.

In order to get an estimated number of subscribers, we can subtract the normal day to day traffic from the the spikes we see when we publish a new episode.

podcast subscriber numbers

How to Estimate Podcast Subscriber Numbers

The best way to get an estimate of your podcast subscriber numbers is like this.

First find the number of downloads you have on a day where you don’t publish a podcast. These may be downloads from people who are researching new shows, or it could be the average number of downloads you get from people streaming or doing other day-to-day podcast listening activity. Let’s call this number your regular download rate.

Second, look to the days where you publish an episode. This will probably be the highest number of downloads on a single day. Let’s call this number the peak download rate.

Let’s subtract the regular download rate from the peak download rate. That will give you the best idea for your subscriber count.

Considerations

If your show has an audience that listens via a web browser or an android device it’s likely that you’ll get a lot of downloads that should not be added into your subscriber count estimation.

You can filter your downloads by device and operating system to get a better idea for iOS specific download counts.

At the end of the day, a rough estimate is great for your decision making. It’s probably better to focus on creating excellent podcasts than to spend time working on a more nuanced estimate of subscriber numbers.