iTunes New and Noteworthy Charts are No Longer Updated

Are you trying to get into iTunes' New & Noteworthy podcast charts?

Stop wasting your time.

Only the Comedy and News & Politics categories contain New or Noteworthy podcasts as of this writing (March 2018).

Here is proof:

THE SHOWS ARE NOT NEW

The following is a screenshot I shared in FB on January 6, 2017 of the New & Noteworthy (Business category):

posted in FB January 6 2017

Screenshot of iTunes N&N (Business category) shared on Facebook in January 2017

 

It looks a lot like one from today, March 11, 2018:

itunes new and noteworthy charts not updated (business category) 2018-03-11

iTunes New & Noteworthy (Business category) on March 11, 2018

MANY HAVE PODFADED

As you can see from the image above, some New & Noteworthy shows have not released an episode in over a YEAR!

Your Morning JumpStart by Bonnie Cribbs hasn't released an episode since June 2016 (Business category):

business nandn today

One of my clients, The Council on Human Function, completed Season 1 July 2017 and won't be back until Spring 2018:

COHF podfaded July 2017

Please Finish Your Book by John P. Smith Jr. was last released in September 2016 (Business category):

will please finish your book ever finish?

 

THE SHOWS AREN'T NECESSARILY NOTEWORTHY

The word “noteworthy” is subjective, so I may be overstepping my boundaries and discounting a podcast that is truly worthy of being included in the listings long past what can reasonably be called “new”.

please finish your book podcast logoUsing the podcast listed above, “Please Finish Your Book“, it is possible the content is evergreen and finding new subscribers every day.

However, from what I can gather from he is no longer active – anywhere:

And the worst thing about it all?

We never find out if he finished his book! 🙂

 

The hottest shows aren't included

Almost every show in category level N&N listings were released in 2016. You know what isn't in N&N charts? The hot new shows!

This Is Love is a new show released January 2018 (5 episodes so far).
This Is Love 1k ratings 250 reviews
It has more than 1,000 ratings and 250 reviews, and is listed as #12 on itunescharts.net

this is love American iTunes Chart Performance
…but it isn't listed in the New & Noteworthy U.S. charts for Society & Culture:

NEW AND NOTEWORTHY SOCIETY AND CULTURE
Yet, Parenting Abroad is listed, even though they haven't released an episode since April 2016?!?

 

AND WHAT ABOUT JORDAN HARBINGER?

Jordan Harbinger from Art of Charm fame released his own show in January 2018.
jordan harbinger show
He is not in New & Noteworthy. Anywhere.

If Jordan Harbinger can't crack into New & Noteworthy for the Education category, then what chance does an indie podcaster like you and I have?

 

NO CATEGORY-LEVEL N&N PODCASTS ARE IN THE TOP-LEVEL LISTING

Here is the top-level iTunes New & Noteworthy listing from March 11, 2018 (sorted alphabetically):

itunes top category n&n listing March 2018

Not a single podcast in a cagetory-level listing is included on the home page New & Noteworthy listing.

It is possible that Apple won't list a show in both places, but the evidence points to something more condemning: The category-level listings are no longer being managed.

 

WHAT DOES THIS MEAN FOR INDIE PODCASTERS?

In the past few weeks I've had three clients say, “But I only have 8 weeks to get into New & Noteworthy”.

That mantra needs to be put to sleep.

You need to focus on what is more important:

  • Connecting with your listener
  • Growing your subscriber base
  • Making great content your listener is compelled to share

It is your audience that will make your podcast a success – not a broken chart listing.

 

I no longer check the New & Noteworthy listings, so in the future I would appreciate if you would let me know if you notice they have been updated.

Your Podcast Isn't Showing Up in Spotify? Check these 4 things

4 Comments

  • Heather

    March 13, 2018

    Yes! Thank you for this! The parenting section has been the same shows for over a year and those shows are now juggernauts because of it. No new shows can be found or discovered and it’s so frustrating. Do you think iTunes will fix this or are they maybe coming up with a new way to feature shows?

    • Steve Stewart

      March 13, 2018

      Any thoughts I have about Apple fixing this or coming up with a new way to feature shows is purely conjecture. I’m wondering what it will look like if they finally separate the podcast directory from the desktop version of iTunes – as they did with the IOS app a few years ago.

      As it stands today, you can’t browse category-level New & Noteworthy listings (Browse > Featured > New & Noteworthy). So my bet is they will go away and only the top-level New & Noteworthy list will exist.

      But I wouldn’t let this single listing dictate the success of a podcast. Sure, it would be nice to be featured anywhere but the real power comes from one listener sharing your show with another. Personal recommendations are the power behind growing an audience in both numbers and credibility – so get exposure to your podcast by asking others to share it with their friends. THAT makes your podcast new and noteworthy to a new set of ears.

  • Steve Bremner

    March 14, 2018

    Thanks for this find Steve.
    I think it was Cliff Ravenscraft who did a whole show about this a year ago or so, and he had mentioned a few things that helped put into perspective for me that trying to hit N&N is largely overrated and you can basically distinguis the newbies from the seasoned podcasters based on who’s striving to get in N&N:

    – It’s not a ranking, but they are curated by people at Apple, so getting “enough” subscribers and/or reviews has no bearing whatsoever on ever getting on N&N. It’s better to aim for charts in your podcast’s niche.
    -All podcasters get better at podcasting as time goes on and they get more experience. You don’t really want your newest episodes to be the first thing people hear, but maybe your show after a year or two. You’re not getting people to see “your best self” when you’re new, as your show will only improve as you get more experience.

    There was more, since his show is an hour long, but those are the points that have stuck with me.

    Blessings!

    -Steve

    • Steve Stewart

      March 14, 2018

      I love the comment “distinguish the newbies from the seasoned”. So true.