Filmora
Filmora - AI Video Editor
Edit Faster, Smarter and Easier!
OPEN
Filmora Video Editor
Effortlessly create video with AI.
  • Various AI editing tools to increase your video creation efficiency.
  • Offer popular templates and royalty-free creative resources.
  • Cross-platform functionality for editing everywhere.

Best Length: How Long Should a Podcast Be? (2024 Updated)

Liza Brown
Liza Brown Originally published Nov 30, 22, updated Mar 27, 24

"How long should my podcast be?" the question is so common to podcasters, especially to those newcomers.

Creating an episode with content too long or too short can badly affect listeners' interest and focus, so plan the podcast length accordingly. We are also concerned about this, so here, we grabbed metadata, including average attention span, the importance of choosing the length, etc., from the net (representing more than 600k distinct podcasts) to reveal the answer. Let's start.

In this article
  1. Overall Average Podcast Length
    1. Do people listen to long podcasts?
    1. Ideal Podcast Episode Length Is Determined by Content
    1. Should all your podcast episodes be the same length?
    2. Why does the length of the podcast matter?
  2. Put The Theory into Practice: Get Recording Your Podcast with Wondershare Filmora

Part 1: Overall Average Podcast Length

To start, let's discuss the most pertinent question- the average length of a podcast per episode. Typically, the overall length is around 25 to 30 minutes, which podcasters with an established fan base running 40-minute-long episodes.

For some, like informational storytime podcasts, 35-40 minutes are enough to present the full detailed story. Here, 10-15 minutes can get too constricted, time-wise. To sum up, the length of podcasts depends on a few things, like your audience, what you're talking about, and when you publish.

Part 2: What About Listening Habits?

Truthfully, podcasts lose between 20 to 35 percent of listeners in the first five minutes. To understand why they sometimes stop listening within less than five minutes, you must know what keeps a listener engaged. It is important to note that podcasting is a relatively new form of media, and a considerable percentage of the public still does not know what it is.

While they may have heard of it (statistically, 79% of people know what it is), there is still certain confusion since they don't consume podcasts regularly.

So, many people turn on an episode to first see what it is like, so a shorter length works best to pull in these audiences.

Another important listening habit for people is that they often use this medium via mobile devices. One survey report starts around 5-7% of the group use mobile devices over laptops or desktops. It is because people (about 51%) often listen to podcasts while in the car, so the ideal podcast length should be around 20-30 minutes. Also, 46% of people, on average, listen to podcasts during long walks.

At home, 59% of people listen to podcast episodes during housework, so longer podcast lengths are suitable. Overall, around 49% of listeners of podcasts access the episodes at home while relaxing on the bed or couch.

location average of where most listeners use podcast

Do people listen to long podcasts?

Notably, most people have lowered attention spans, so boredom hits much more quicker. As per one statistical report, 12% of users only listen to half of an episode, but If the content is exciting, they may be inclined to listen longer.

However, casual listeners who are not yet fans of a podcaster will not stick until the last second unless they find the content captivating. So, in the context of how long should a podcast episode be, it is advisable not to keep them too long.

Yet, some statistics say that there is a portion of the audience that does prefer longer episodes. For example, one study shows that, on average, 84% of podcasts with over 100,000 downloads are 51-minutes-long episodes. So, it is not a full guarantee that a shorter episode is the best option to attract an audience and increase average channel listening hours.

People listen to long and short podcasts, depending on their taste and the genre. Therefore, it would help to decide the podcast length based on your target audience demographic, the content you create for them, and publishing time.

Part 3: How long should a Podcast be?

Given that people listen to any podcast on average, you would have more leeway in deciding your episode length. However, it is still essential to plan the right episode length.

The overall podcast length, on average, can vary as per the content category you are producing. For example, podcasts catering to games of different kinds and music have longer episodes.

Next comes Film and TV show-related podcasts that discuss the show episodes, theories on new seasons, and characters. Comedy, religion, philosophy, sports, and such niche interest-based categories have medium length on average, e.g., 20-30 minutes.

The shortest podcast-length episodes cater to business news, school children's educational content, and language classes.

the median length of podcasts as per content category
Note: We need to look at the median length of podcasts as per content category and not the mean average because larger shows could disproportionately pull the mean up.

Ideal Podcast Episode Length Is Determined by Content

Indeed, the answer to the "how long is a podcast" question depends highly on the content type and category. You should not plan the content of the podcast episode based on a set time limit and cram your information. It will ultimately result in a loss of content flow, and the listeners will leave feeling confused.

Instead, plan the length based on the content and stay open to slight changes to your limit if you have more details to add. Here are some examples of the average time limits for the top content categories for podcasts.

Podcasts' Genre Average Length of Podcast Episode
Christianity 35 to 39 minutes
Music 45 minutes
Comedy 55 minutes and 33 seconds
Society & Culture 40 minutes
TV & Film 40 to 45 minutes
News & Policies 28 minutes and 1 second
Sports & Recreation 40 to 55 minutes
Religion & Spirituality 54 minutes and 27 seconds
Education 5 hours and 60 minutes
Arts 30 minutes

Christianity

Podcasters can center their content around the religious explanatory concept-like episode. Or, some creators cater too heavily to Christian audiences, discussing complex topics like the Apostles. The average time is around 35-39 minutes.

Music

Many podcasters decide to create content around the music industry, discussing related controversies. Otherwise, they may use their platform to do full album reviews/discussions. So, if you want to know how long is the average podcast for music-based content, the amount is 60 minutes. One good example is Dolly Parton's America, whose episodes run for 45 minutes on average.

the dolly parton's America

Comedy

Typically, comedy-based channels run podcast episodes that are 55 minutes and 33 seconds long. Here, they discuss various topics or divide their content into segments with skits.

Society & Culture

Content creators prepare podcasts on topics related to major incidents related to their culture. Societal commentaries' podcast episodes are around 40 minutes long.

TV & Film

Many podcasters focus their content on TV shows or movie discussions. They can cover discussions on new episode commentary, behind-the-scene drama, or preparing theories on the story. For example, Riverdale After Dark for the CW show "Riverdale" creates 40-45-minutes-long episodes on average.

riverdale after dark

News & Policies

Some channels dedicate their content to topics related to current news globally or nationally. Their average episodes run for 28 minutes and 1 second.

Sports & Recreation

Different content creators can prepare their content on sports-related content. For example, they can discuss the world cup matches or specific sports trivia details, like hockey or cricket. The average time for these is around 40-55 minutes.

Religion & Spirituality

Like Christian-centred podcasts, other options are available for different religions or spiritual discussions. The average time here is around 54 minutes and 27 seconds.

Education

The educational content of different types is available on other podcast mediums, covering varying topics. For example, Dan Carlin's Hardcore History podcast creates multi-hour discussions on various historical topics, averaging 4-6 hours. The "Show 60- The Celtic Holocaust" had a whole episode length of 5 hours and 60 minutes.

dan carlin's hardcore history

Arts

Literature is a common choice of discussion in many circles, and they have podcasts on related topics. But, on average, how long a podcast should be for arts-related content can round off to around 30 minutes.

Takeaways for You

Having said so much, here is the sum-up:

  • Below 15 minutes: Great for news podcasts where you provide many valuable and actionable tips.
  • Between 15 – 40 minutes: Podcast episodes are generally around this length—the idea for storytelling and interviews.
  • Above 40 minutes: Ideal for dedicated audiences or shows that are not as structured.

Part 4: How Long Does a Podcast Have to "Hook" a New Listener?

It is essential to make the introduction highly engaging to attract the right type of listeners to your channel. Statistically, 27.5% of listeners will give an episode 5 minutes to hook them, and 28.9% of people can stick around for 15 minutes. So, in the text of how long should a podcast intro be, give this section around 5-10 minutes.

Place the intro music after the introduction to attract viewers or give a small break between the intro and core content. As for how long should podcast intro music be, make a catchy tune or add one stock audio intro that suits your content less than 1 minute in length.

Should all your podcast episodes be the same length?

Now that you know how long podcasts are and how soon listeners make up their minds on an episode, the next question comes about the consistent formula. Should you keep all the episodes one length?

It is better not to since it is impossible to stick to one specific time stamp for all episode types. For example, in a True Crime-based podcast, one case may have more detailed findings about an infamous serial killer.

However, the same creator may do another episode on a lesser know person with comparatively lesser research material. Indeed, it is not possible to dedicate the same length to both cases. Decide that as per content type.

Why does the length of the podcast matter?

Yes, you can change the overall content for different videos. However, some might wonder if focusing so much on how long a podcast should be is even necessary since you must base it on the content.

The answer is yes, it does matter. Some reasons for that are:

·   20 to 35 percent of listeners are missing

Add content that entices your listener to stay and hear more. That is because, statistically, podcasts lost around 20-35% of new listeners in the initial five minutes.

·   Attracting new listeners and growing a fanbase

Casual listeners do not immediately stick to listening to an entire episode unless the content attracts them heavily. So, focusing on the length of the content is helpful to give the whole content concisely but well-detailed.

·   Listeners have different listening habits

Some listeners tune in to a podcast while commuting only while others do so with a lot of time to spare as they relax at home. So, going about a topic for hours will prove counterproductive for you as you will lose the former audience group.

Part 5: Put The Theory into Practice: Get Recording Your Podcast with Wondershare Filmora

Certainly, focusing on the podcast length is important. But what if you are recording an episode for a long time and have to shape it later to have the intro, theme song, and episode content? Here, using capable audio editing software like Wondershare Filmora is useful.

The software is available for Mac and Windows users and contains multiple high-quality audio editing features. For example, you can record audio directly and an extra voiceover from a video (if you are posting on both a video-based and audio-based platform). Plus, you can adjust audio quality and export files easily.

Best Features for Editing Podcast Episodes with Filmora:

  • Enable audio to be more attractive with equalizer, denoise, audio effects, and speed adjustment.
  • The speech-to-text converts the voiceover to text, making content more accessible.
  • Text-to-Speech helps to translate your written notes to an AI-based voice for podcast recording.
  • Export the final audio file in MP3 file format without loss of quality.

How-to steps to recording and editing podcasts with Filmora?

Free Download
Free Download

Step1 Launch the Filmora software on your desktop.

Step2 Press "New Project" to start audio recording and editing.

import a stock video file or image

Step3 Click the Record button to start recording. From the options, select the "Record Voiceover" choice.

select the record voiceover choice

Step4 Set up your Microphone device > press the Red Circle in the middle to start voice recording.

press the red circle to start recording

Step5 After the full recording completes, hit the Stop button. Then, press OK to save.

press ok to save

Step6 Double-click the audio file, then make edits, like fade in, fade out, pitch, denoise, etc., that can be made on the audio you just recorded.

double-click the audio file

Step7 Even more, you can add transition music for the middle or background and atmospheric noises for the natural scene creation in Filmora. There are many built-in audio resources for you that do not need additional downloads.

add transition music

Final Words

Overall, it is important to carefully plan the episode length for your podcast content. For this, understand your audience's needs and the category you focus on, and prepare the length accordingly. Also, finding an efficient audio editor, like Filmora, can help you save a lot of time and energy to output high-quality podcast shows.

Free Download
Free Download

"How long should my podcast be?" the question is so common to podcasters, especially to those newcomers.

Creating an episode with content too long or too short can badly affect listeners' interest and focus, so plan the podcast length accordingly. We are also concerned about this, so here, we grabbed metadata, including average attention span, the importance of choosing the length, etc., from the net (representing more than 600k distinct podcasts) to reveal the answer. Let's start.

In this article
  1. Overall Average Podcast Length
    1. Do people listen to long podcasts?
    1. Ideal Podcast Episode Length Is Determined by Content
    1. Should all your podcast episodes be the same length?
    2. Why does the length of the podcast matter?
  2. Put The Theory into Practice: Get Recording Your Podcast with Wondershare Filmora

Part 1: Overall Average Podcast Length

To start, let's discuss the most pertinent question- the average length of a podcast per episode. Typically, the overall length is around 25 to 30 minutes, which podcasters with an established fan base running 40-minute-long episodes.

For some, like informational storytime podcasts, 35-40 minutes are enough to present the full detailed story. Here, 10-15 minutes can get too constricted, time-wise. To sum up, the length of podcasts depends on a few things, like your audience, what you're talking about, and when you publish.

Part 2: What About Listening Habits?

Truthfully, podcasts lose between 20 to 35 percent of listeners in the first five minutes. To understand why they sometimes stop listening within less than five minutes, you must know what keeps a listener engaged. It is important to note that podcasting is a relatively new form of media, and a considerable percentage of the public still does not know what it is.

While they may have heard of it (statistically, 79% of people know what it is), there is still certain confusion since they don't consume podcasts regularly.

So, many people turn on an episode to first see what it is like, so a shorter length works best to pull in these audiences.

Another important listening habit for people is that they often use this medium via mobile devices. One survey report starts around 5-7% of the group use mobile devices over laptops or desktops. It is because people (about 51%) often listen to podcasts while in the car, so the ideal podcast length should be around 20-30 minutes. Also, 46% of people, on average, listen to podcasts during long walks.

At home, 59% of people listen to podcast episodes during housework, so longer podcast lengths are suitable. Overall, around 49% of listeners of podcasts access the episodes at home while relaxing on the bed or couch.

location average of where most listeners use podcast

Do people listen to long podcasts?

Notably, most people have lowered attention spans, so boredom hits much more quicker. As per one statistical report, 12% of users only listen to half of an episode, but If the content is exciting, they may be inclined to listen longer.

However, casual listeners who are not yet fans of a podcaster will not stick until the last second unless they find the content captivating. So, in the context of how long should a podcast episode be, it is advisable not to keep them too long.

Yet, some statistics say that there is a portion of the audience that does prefer longer episodes. For example, one study shows that, on average, 84% of podcasts with over 100,000 downloads are 51-minutes-long episodes. So, it is not a full guarantee that a shorter episode is the best option to attract an audience and increase average channel listening hours.

People listen to long and short podcasts, depending on their taste and the genre. Therefore, it would help to decide the podcast length based on your target audience demographic, the content you create for them, and publishing time.

Part 3: How long should a Podcast be?

Given that people listen to any podcast on average, you would have more leeway in deciding your episode length. However, it is still essential to plan the right episode length.

The overall podcast length, on average, can vary as per the content category you are producing. For example, podcasts catering to games of different kinds and music have longer episodes.

Next comes Film and TV show-related podcasts that discuss the show episodes, theories on new seasons, and characters. Comedy, religion, philosophy, sports, and such niche interest-based categories have medium length on average, e.g., 20-30 minutes.

The shortest podcast-length episodes cater to business news, school children's educational content, and language classes.

the median length of podcasts as per content category
icon
Note: We need to look at the median length of podcasts as per content category and not the mean average because larger shows could disproportionately pull the mean up.

Ideal Podcast Episode Length Is Determined by Content

Indeed, the answer to the "how long is a podcast" question depends highly on the content type and category. You should not plan the content of the podcast episode based on a set time limit and cram your information. It will ultimately result in a loss of content flow, and the listeners will leave feeling confused.

Instead, plan the length based on the content and stay open to slight changes to your limit if you have more details to add. Here are some examples of the average time limits for the top content categories for podcasts.

Podcasts' Genre Average Length of Podcast Episode
Christianity 35 to 39 minutes
Music 45 minutes
Comedy 55 minutes and 33 seconds
Society & Culture 40 minutes
TV & Film 40 to 45 minutes
News & Policies 28 minutes and 1 second
Sports & Recreation 40 to 55 minutes
Religion & Spirituality 54 minutes and 27 seconds
Education 5 hours and 60 minutes
Arts 30 minutes

Christianity

Podcasters can center their content around the religious explanatory concept-like episode. Or, some creators cater too heavily to Christian audiences, discussing complex topics like the Apostles. The average time is around 35-39 minutes.

Music

Many podcasters decide to create content around the music industry, discussing related controversies. Otherwise, they may use their platform to do full album reviews/discussions. So, if you want to know how long is the average podcast for music-based content, the amount is 60 minutes. One good example is Dolly Parton's America, whose episodes run for 45 minutes on average.

the dolly parton's America

Comedy

Typically, comedy-based channels run podcast episodes that are 55 minutes and 33 seconds long. Here, they discuss various topics or divide their content into segments with skits.

Society & Culture

Content creators prepare podcasts on topics related to major incidents related to their culture. Societal commentaries' podcast episodes are around 40 minutes long.

TV & Film

Many podcasters focus their content on TV shows or movie discussions. They can cover discussions on new episode commentary, behind-the-scene drama, or preparing theories on the story. For example, Riverdale After Dark for the CW show "Riverdale" creates 40-45-minutes-long episodes on average.

riverdale after dark

News & Policies

Some channels dedicate their content to topics related to current news globally or nationally. Their average episodes run for 28 minutes and 1 second.

Sports & Recreation

Different content creators can prepare their content on sports-related content. For example, they can discuss the world cup matches or specific sports trivia details, like hockey or cricket. The average time for these is around 40-55 minutes.

Religion & Spirituality

Like Christian-centred podcasts, other options are available for different religions or spiritual discussions. The average time here is around 54 minutes and 27 seconds.

Education

The educational content of different types is available on other podcast mediums, covering varying topics. For example, Dan Carlin's Hardcore History podcast creates multi-hour discussions on various historical topics, averaging 4-6 hours. The "Show 60- The Celtic Holocaust" had a whole episode length of 5 hours and 60 minutes.

dan carlin's hardcore history

Arts

Literature is a common choice of discussion in many circles, and they have podcasts on related topics. But, on average, how long a podcast should be for arts-related content can round off to around 30 minutes.

Takeaways for You

Having said so much, here is the sum-up:

  • Below 15 minutes: Great for news podcasts where you provide many valuable and actionable tips.
  • Between 15 – 40 minutes: Podcast episodes are generally around this length—the idea for storytelling and interviews.
  • Above 40 minutes: Ideal for dedicated audiences or shows that are not as structured.

Part 4: How Long Does a Podcast Have to "Hook" a New Listener?

It is essential to make the introduction highly engaging to attract the right type of listeners to your channel. Statistically, 27.5% of listeners will give an episode 5 minutes to hook them, and 28.9% of people can stick around for 15 minutes. So, in the text of how long should a podcast intro be, give this section around 5-10 minutes.

Place the intro music after the introduction to attract viewers or give a small break between the intro and core content. As for how long should podcast intro music be, make a catchy tune or add one stock audio intro that suits your content less than 1 minute in length.

Should all your podcast episodes be the same length?

Now that you know how long podcasts are and how soon listeners make up their minds on an episode, the next question comes about the consistent formula. Should you keep all the episodes one length?

It is better not to since it is impossible to stick to one specific time stamp for all episode types. For example, in a True Crime-based podcast, one case may have more detailed findings about an infamous serial killer.

However, the same creator may do another episode on a lesser know person with comparatively lesser research material. Indeed, it is not possible to dedicate the same length to both cases. Decide that as per content type.

Why does the length of the podcast matter?

Yes, you can change the overall content for different videos. However, some might wonder if focusing so much on how long a podcast should be is even necessary since you must base it on the content.

The answer is yes, it does matter. Some reasons for that are:

·   20 to 35 percent of listeners are missing

Add content that entices your listener to stay and hear more. That is because, statistically, podcasts lost around 20-35% of new listeners in the initial five minutes.

·   Attracting new listeners and growing a fanbase

Casual listeners do not immediately stick to listening to an entire episode unless the content attracts them heavily. So, focusing on the length of the content is helpful to give the whole content concisely but well-detailed.

·   Listeners have different listening habits

Some listeners tune in to a podcast while commuting only while others do so with a lot of time to spare as they relax at home. So, going about a topic for hours will prove counterproductive for you as you will lose the former audience group.

Part 5: Put The Theory into Practice: Get Recording Your Podcast with Wondershare Filmora

Certainly, focusing on the podcast length is important. But what if you are recording an episode for a long time and have to shape it later to have the intro, theme song, and episode content? Here, using capable audio editing software like Wondershare Filmora is useful.

The software is available for Mac and Windows users and contains multiple high-quality audio editing features. For example, you can record audio directly and an extra voiceover from a video (if you are posting on both a video-based and audio-based platform). Plus, you can adjust audio quality and export files easily.

Best Features for Editing Podcast Episodes with Filmora:

  • Enable audio to be more attractive with equalizer, denoise, audio effects, and speed adjustment.
  • The speech-to-text converts the voiceover to text, making content more accessible.
  • Text-to-Speech helps to translate your written notes to an AI-based voice for podcast recording.
  • Export the final audio file in MP3 file format without loss of quality.

How-to steps to recording and editing podcasts with Filmora?

Free Download
Free Download

Step1 Launch the Filmora software on your desktop.

Step2 Press "New Project" to start audio recording and editing.

import a stock video file or image

Step3 Click the Record button to start recording. From the options, select the "Record Voiceover" choice.

select the record voiceover choice

Step4 Set up your Microphone device > press the Red Circle in the middle to start voice recording.

press the red circle to start recording

Step5 After the full recording completes, hit the Stop button. Then, press OK to save.

press ok to save

Step6 Double-click the audio file, then make edits, like fade in, fade out, pitch, denoise, etc., that can be made on the audio you just recorded.

double-click the audio file

Step7 Even more, you can add transition music for the middle or background and atmospheric noises for the natural scene creation in Filmora. There are many built-in audio resources for you that do not need additional downloads.

add transition music

Final Words

Overall, it is important to carefully plan the episode length for your podcast content. For this, understand your audience's needs and the category you focus on, and prepare the length accordingly. Also, finding an efficient audio editor, like Filmora, can help you save a lot of time and energy to output high-quality podcast shows.

Free Download
Free Download
Liza Brown
Liza Brown Mar 27, 24
Share article: