The Difference Between IAB and CoHost’s Unique Listeners

Unique listeners is a measurement of how many individual people listened to your podcast within a given time period. It’s a fantastic way to measure the total size of your audience.

There are two calculations that CoHost uses to measure unique listeners. This article breaks down each method and shows you how to toggle between the two.

CoHost’s Unique Listener Method

CoHost uses three key attributes to calculate a podcast’s unique listeners:

  1. IP address provided in our download logs
  2. User agent (System that identifies the source of the download. For example: Apple Podcasts)
  3. Time the download log occurred

CoHost’s calculation works by examining the IP addresses provided in our logs within a 24 hour time period and matching them to user agents. That way, we can say with confidence that an individual listener played a podcast.

What does this mean for CoHost users? 

If you are selecting a custom date range on CoHost’s unique listener page, unique listeners are counted on a 24 hour basis and summed up to give you the total number of unique listeners within a your chosen time range.

IAB’s Unique Listener Method

IAB (Interactive Advertising Bureau) is an organization that sets the standard for how downloads and unique listeners are measured in the podcast industry. They are comprised of several podcast experts and organizations (like CoHost) who are innovating in the podcast space to give the best data possible to creators like yourself.

IAB uses the same three attributes to calculate a podcast’s unique listener metric with one key difference. CoHost measures unique listeners in a 24 hour time period, whereas IAB measures unique listeners in an all time range. This means that when you select “IAB” on CoHost’s unique listener page, it will generally show lower numbers as it is taking into account individual logs that occurred within the all time date range selected, rather than the daily range.

Toggling Between CoHost and IAB’s Unique Listener Data

It’s easy to select either CoHost’s or IAB’s unique listener calculations. Here’s how to do it:

1) Dashboard

Head to your CoHost dashboard and take a look at the Show Unique Listeners summary bar. Here you can simply turn IAB’s calculation on or off.

2) Unique Listeners Page

Head to “Show Analytics” in your left hand side bar and choose “Unique Listeners.” On the right hand side of the summary bar, you will see the toggle to turn IAB’s calculation on or off.

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