Faith comes by hearing. That's the Scripture that inspired the Charisma Podcast Network, which just surpassed the 1 million download mark.
Launched less than a year ago by visionary and Charisma Media publisher Dr. Steve Greene, CPN features a variety of shows, including news, leadership, inspiring stories, women's topics and more. All told, we've developed 11 unique shows for this growing network as readers keep coming back asking for more.
"I believe in the power of the pen, but the Holy Spirit showed me the power of the spoken word. Podcasting allows Charisma Media to reach hungry Christians who enjoy listening to Spirit-inspired content in the car, at home or anywhere else," says Greene, who has worked in TV station management at major stations and in marketing capabilities with Fortune 500 members. "I knew our audiences—and new audiences—would appreciate this mobile audio platform and that our advertisers hoping to reach this target market would flock to it."
Although I have tremendous confidence in Dr. Greene, I was surprised at the rapid rise of my own show, Walking in the Spirit. No matter where I travel ministering around the country, people tell me they are avid listeners. I've even received testimonies from people around the world sharing how this simple podcast has impacted their lives.
Here's just one of many. This comes from Sharon Miller in Texas.
"I just wanted to let you know that I listened to your podcast for the first time this week. What the Holy Spirit had to say set me free from a situation that I have been going through for six months now," she writes. "I prayed about it and prayed about it until I told God that I didn't know what to pray anymore. What Holy Spirit said got my mind off my situation and back on enjoying God. It just set me free. Praise God!"
Of course, we have shows to meet a variety of listening interests. Dr. Greene's At Work With God podcast is a great way to start your day as you set out to do God's will in the marketplace and demonstrate a spirit of excellence. The Charisma News Podcast presents the news in a story-telling mode ala NPR—but with a spiritual perspective. And C-Pop offers a look at popular culture through the eyes of two of my favorite Millennials.
Clearly, Christians are hungry for content that feeds their spirit and encourages their soul. I have to admit, I did not see the potential Dr. Greene saw and I'm grateful that he pioneered this platform at Charisma Media. Most podcast networks never reach the 1 million download mark—in fact, studies show most podcasts fail—yet by the grace of God and with the support of our loyal readers we did hit 1 million downloads in less than a year.
CPN has also provided a strategic opportunity for advertisers who want to reach a hungry audience of Christian listeners. Subscribers who find us today often go back and listen to a slew of past podcasts, multiplying the ROI of the advertising investment. Truly, it's a win-win-win.
Faith comes by hearing—and the Lord is using podcasts to reach new audiences with relevant, inspiring content. Consider the overall statistics in the podcasting market. According to Edison Research:
- Podcasting listening grew 23% between 2015 and 2016.
- 21% of Americans ages 12 and up have listened to a podcast in the past month, up from 17% in 2015.
- Only 13% of the USA listens to Spotify monthly, and 21% of the country uses Twitter.
- Monthly podcast listenership has increased 75% since 2013.
- 64% of podcasts are being listened to on a smartphone or tablet.
- Weekly podcast listeners consume five shows per week on average.
In a soundbite world where people are on the go, podcasting clearly fills a void—and the Charisma Podcast Network is filling that void well in the Christian market. If you haven't listened to our podcasts, you can subscribe via iTunes, Android Play or visit our website at CPNShows.com.
Jennifer LeClaire is senior editor of Charisma. She is also director of Awakening House of Prayer in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, co-founder of awakeningtv.com, on the leadership team of the New Breed Revival Network and author of several books, including The Next Great Move of God: An Appeal to Heaven for Spiritual Awakening;Mornings With the Holy Spirit, Listening Daily to the Still, Small Voice of God; The Making of a Prophet and Satan's Deadly Trio: Defeating the Deceptions of Jezebel, Religion and Witchcraft. You can visit her website here. You can also join Jennifer onFacebook or follow her on Twitter. Jennifer's Periscope handle is @propheticbooks.