Have you ever stopped listening to a podcast before the introduction was even finished?
If so, you're not alone! You're part of the 20-30% of listeners who turn off a new podcast within the first two minutes.
Why is this number so high? When listening to a new podcast, most people are just trying to figure out if the show is right for them. Anything from overpowering theme music, to bad quality audio, even the host's voice - can turn listeners off.
But the biggest reason for early listener drop off? The podcast introduction is WAAAAY too long.
So if you're looking to engage new listeners and keep them coming back, you need to think critically and strategically about the length and content of your podcast introduction. Introductions that are long, rambling, off topic or annoying are more likely to turn listeners off early - and may never come back. So make the most of the first critical 120 seconds!
What is a 'podcast introduction'?
We define a podcast introduction as anything that comes before the main content of your episode.
Components of an introduction may include:
- Intro theme music (with or without a voice over)
- Short audio snippet as a 'teaser' for the episode
- Host's welcome to the episode
- Bio of the guest
- Overview of what's discussed in the episode
- Acknowledgement of country
- Trigger warnings
- Call To Action
What you include in your introduction is up to you - but you must take into consideration who your audience is, and the objectives of the podcast.
How long should a podcast introduction be?
Looking at the general statistics around listener drop off rates, we recommend getting to the main content of your episode within the first 2 minutes. If you can get the intro done in 90 seconds - even better!
Click here to listen to an example of our CEO Christina Canters' podcast Stand Out Get Noticed - Episode 283. The intro is only 1 min 22 sec.
How to reduce the length of your introduction:
- You don't need to read the guest's entire bio. Just include the high level points!
- Keep calls to action SHORT - or even better, incorporate them into the content of your episode. You can even use a mid roll call to action halfway through the episode.
- Eliminate all banter - no one cares what you ate for breakfast or what the weather is doing
- Shorten your intro music - we don't need 30 seconds of your theme music
- Share ONE sentence of what the listener will get out of the episode, but don't list out everything that's spoken about - leave that for the actual content.