Tuesday, November 24, 2020

Team Whistle, an entertainment and sports media company that has launched its own podcast network to leverage its content into the audio space, has released some findings of survey data it has collected aimed at determining the relationship Gen Z and Millennial audiences have with podcasts. Its big takeaway is that because podcast listening is an active, engaged, and lean-in experience, for young listeners the medium is a primed for brand advertising. Read more

Things happen fast in the world of celebrity and entertainment news, and People magazine is turning to podcast to supplement what it is putting on the newsstand each week. The Meredith-owned magazine is teaming with the iHeartPodcast Network to launch People Every Day, a new Monday to Friday podcast that is set to premiere February 1. The series will be hosted by People Editor Janine Rubenstein. Read more

The Atlantic magazine has produced podcasts like the political news The Ticket and the health and science-focused Social Distance podcasts in-house. But in its newest series it is teaming up with New York Public Radio’s WNYC Studios. “We have some of the best journalists in the world on our team, and I want their stories to have maximum reach and impact,” said Editor in Chief Jeffrey Goldberg. The podcast The Experiment will launch in January. Read more

She has hosted a podcast for Essence and been a programming director at Luminary. Now Yolanda Sangweni is heading to NPR where she has just been named a Senior VP of Programming. NPR says she will help drive its strategy to reach new audiences, including developing new programs and initiatives, both on-air and online. Read more

Sixteen months after appointing Juliette Morris as its new CEO, TuneIn is making another change at the top. The streaming audio provider has recruited Richard Stern, Chief Product Officer for Audible, to be its new chief executive. The new leadership coincides with a cash infusion from investment firm Innovation Endeavors to help accelerate its technology in the fast-moving digital audio space. Read more

Google Podcasts has crossed the 50 million download mark in the Google Play Store for Android device users… AccuWeather has signed a deal with AdLarge Media to have its ad inventory sold by the Cabana podcast network…Buzzsprout had 63.8 million downloads during the month of October. That included 89.5% of downloads that went to mobile devices… National Geographic has teamed up with Muck Media to launch a companion podcast to its new investigative TV series “Trafficked with Mariana van Zeller.” Read more

  • Updated

There are some new music-focused podcasts this week including a Double Elvis show about the women behind some famous rockers, a Wondery show about New Jack Swing, and The Ringer’s first music podcast. Also, this week there is a new iHeart show that takes on health scans with a heavy dose of humor. Plus, there are several new sports-focused podcasts. Here is some of what is new in podcasts this week. Read more

In observance of the Thanksgiving holiday, Podcast News Daily will not publish Wednesday, Nov. 25 and our offices will be closed Thursday, Nov. 26 and Friday Nov. 27. We resume our regular publishing schedule on Monday, Nov. 30. On behalf of everyone on our team, we wish you and your family a very happy Thanksgiving. Read more

Monday, November 23, 2020
  • Updated

As podcasting has gone mainstream, it has allowed the industry to attract some of the biggest brand advertisers in America. Molson Coors, the second-biggest brewing company in the U.S., is already buying podcast ads and it is looking to spend more. It also wants to pour dollars into live events as podcasts have proven to be a good fit for the brand’s personality-driven marketing strategy. Here’s a rare look into why a huge brand is embracing podcasts and how it is using the medium. Read more

  • Updated

Daily news podcasts make up less than one percent of all podcasts, but they account for more than ten percent of overall U.S. downloads. That is according to a new analysis of the genre by the Reuters Institute, which says news publishers in many parts of the world launch podcasts to attract younger audiences. It says the U.S. market has become “extremely crowded” and only a “truly distinctive new proposition is likely to gain attention.” Read more

Libsyn says Comedy genre podcasts did the best during the third quarter. Among shows it hosts, Libysn said podcasts in that category had the most downloads. It was followed by Business and Health & Fitness. Libysn VP Rob Walch said on the company’s The Feed podcast that the genre with the fewest number of downloads during third quarter was Government. “It’s always at the bottom,” he said. The company also said 86.3% of all its downloads in October went to a mobile device. Read more

Ezra Klein, host of the Vox Media Podcast Network’s The Ezra Klein Show, is leaving the company he cofounded in 2014. Klein is heading to the New York Times where he will write a public policy column and host a new Times Opinion section interview podcast. Separately, Vox is also losing Editor-in-Chief Lauren Williams, who has overseen more than a dozen podcasts as part of her duties. Read more

Fresh on the heels of announcing a slate of podcasts with Acast, Investigation Discovery is also lending its brand heft to a new true crime podcast from Audioboom and Main Event Media. While a lot of series in the genre focus on long ago unsolved crimes, the Crime Weekly series will take advantage of its release scheduled to focus on current events while also touching on some iconic and unexplored past cases. Read more

Friday, November 20, 2020
  • Updated

The release of the 2021 line of Volvo XC90 and XC90 Hybrid cars drove the automaker’s parent company Greely to podcasting. Its push to sell the two models to podcasting’s audience made it the biggest spender in October. But Magellan AI reports the banking and financial services ad category was among the strongest for podcasting last month, with a third of the top 15 spenders coming from that sector. Read more

  • Updated

Since its debut two years ago Pushkin Industries – the creation of Jacob Weisberg and Malcom Gladwell – has developed a reputation as a studio that produces thought provoking podcasts that can appeal to the masses. It has had four series that have reached the top 10 on the Apple Podcast charts. In what may seem like a departure, Pushkin will soon launch its first true crime podcast called Lost Hills. Here is why its founders said it took them so long to release a show in the genre. Read more

Radio Ambulante, the only Spanish-language podcast produced by NPR, has just become available on Spotify to grow the show’s audience outside the U.S. The announcement comes as the Daniel Alarcón-hosted Radio Ambulante launches its tenth season. NPR says the passion for the show is on display in another way too. There are also Radio Ambulante “Listening Clubs” in more than 50 cities in the U.S., Latin America, and Europe. Read more

The ties between podcast and film have never been stronger, and that has led the Tribeca Film Festival to launch a new vertical dedicated to audio storytelling. Tribeca Podcasts will be a part of the annual festival that is scheduled to take place next June in New York. Like the buzz and glamour of the film side, Tribeca Podcasts organizers aim to feature podcast premieres and sneak peeks of highly anticipated shows, plus talks with creators and live recordings in front of Festival audiences. Read more

With an enabled fleet of 132 million cars but only 34.4 million paid subscribers, SiriusXM has long been frustrated by an inability to monetize the motorists it hasn’t been able to convert from free satellite radio trials to paid subscribers. Now the company is toying with the idea of launching an ad-supported satellite radio tier in the car. As a way to monetize non-subscribers, it would make a limited number of channels available with commercials added into the mix. Read more

Podcasts with websites will now be able to embed the Apple Podcasts web player…Barstool Sports embraces the widget... Steve Lickteig leaves NBC and relaunches is own firm with podcast focus… PodcastOne and Slacker Radio parent LiveXLive has hired Mike Quartieri as its new Chief Financial Officer…The Stephen King-focused The Kingcast is joining the Fangoria Podcast Network. Read more

Thursday, November 19, 2020

Welcome to the audio party. That is the message that iHeartMedia CEO Bob Pittman is sending to the scores of media companies now launching audio divisions, debuting podcasts, and doing whatever they can to get a slice of what the Interactive Advertising Bureau forecasts will be one of digital media’s fastest-growing segments in 2020. “You are looking at people who are trying to get aboard this party, and for good reason. It’s such a growth engine,” Pittman told Bloomberg TV. Read more

Podcast fans feel passionate about the shows they listen to. That has become an established norm in the industry. But maybe they are also a little nicer than the average person too. Whatever the reason, an analysis of show reviews on Apple Podcasts by Pacific Content Head of Audience Development Dan Misener finds the vast majority of podcasts ratings are five stars. The average is 4.6. Read more

More than a year after the Walt Disney Company announced a deal to expand its Marvel comics brand into podcasting in a deal with SiriusXM, the first series have been announced. It comes as SiriusXM further embraces podcasting. The company best known for its satellite radio service has created a dedicated podcast destination on its website and mobile app to help subscribers find and listen to the content. Read more

ART19, the podcast hosting, content management, monetization, and measurement platform, has been in expansion mode during the past year. And that growth has led to the hiring of its first-ever chief financial officer. ART19 has recruited podcast industry veteran David Murray to become its CFO. ART19 said Murray’s hiring will help the company expand into a “full-fledged media company, including content creation and ad sales.” Read more

Has a podcast just discovered who the so-called Hollywood Con Queen is? And is the answer a gender-bending reveal? That is what is buzzing in Los Angeles this week as Chameleon: Hollywood Con Queen – the first podcast from the new partnership between Campside Media and Sony Music Entertainment – makes headlines. There is already interest in making the podcast into a TV series. Read more

It is the marriage of two fast-growing industries as the esports company MAP Esports Network announces it is launching its own podcast company. The Esports Futuri Podcast Network will feature shows that are focused entirely on the trends and business of esports. The network debuts with three shows and the company says “many more” are to come during the next year. Read more

Wednesday, November 18, 2020

The podcast network and production studio Cloud10 Media has signed a two-year production and distribution deal with the iHeartPodcast Network. As part of the deal, all existing and upcoming Cloud10 Media podcasts will be distributed by the iHeartPodcast Network and will be promoted across iHeartMedia’s multiplatform network, including radio, digital, social media, and live events. Read more

Bobbi Brown may be best known as the makeup artist that changed the beauty industry in the 1990s when she launched the makeup brand that still bears her name. Brown still has her hand in the business, but on her podcast the focus is more about what is inside. On Beyond the Beauty, Brown says she has the sort of conversations not possible on TV. “When you’re on a podcast you just get real conversations.” Read more

  • Updated

SiriusXM has entered into a new long-term agreement with NBCUniversal News Group which has the satcaster serving as the exclusive ad rep and end-to-end ad tech platform for a broad slate of podcasts from NBC News and MSNBC, with additional sales rights to CNBC podcasts. Chief Advertising Revenue Officer John Trimble said the deal will “solidify SiriusXM as a dominant player in the rapidly-growing podcast ad market.” Read more

The horror fiction podcast Archive 81 is heading for Netflix in a deal with the production company Atomic Monster. The streamer says the TV series will be “an original story loosely inspired” by the podcast, which has released three seasons. Marc Sollinger and Daniel Powell, the creators of the podcast will serve as co-producers on the TV series Read more

  • Updated

Spotify has not been shy about spending money when it has come to podcasting, laying out more than a half billion in investments including its biggest to date: this month’s $235 million deal to buy Megaphone. How much will it spend in 2021 or 2022? CFO Paul Vogel says that will depend on how successful it is with what it already owns. Read more

The audio industry continues to attract entrepreneurs and investors, with the two joining forces with the debut of Vurbl. The just-launched online platform and soon-to-follow mobile app intends to be a sort of audio library, weaving all types of audio content into a single place. Vurbl debuts with a half million English-language podcasts that will swim a sea of more than 25 million curated audio files, including user-generated content. Read more

Tuesday, November 17, 2020

After a big week for News genre podcasts thanks to the election, shows in that category stepped back to normal last week. Podtrac says among the biggest categories, News had the biggest week-to-week dip in downloads. Big gains instead went to True Crime and History podcasts. Across all categories, Podtrac reports downloads were flat last week among publishers it tracks. Read more

Podfund, the investment group that has backed 19 different podcast companies including Pushkin Industries, QCode, and Double Elvis, among others, is under new management. The venture capital firm TechNexus Venture Collaborative has become the new manager of Podfund. It had already been among its financial backers. The move comes two months after Podfund co-founder Jake Shapiro joined Apple Podcasts and co-founder Nicola Korzenko joined Amazon. Read more

  • Updated

It has been four months since LiveXLive, a company that is best known for video streaming music events, closed on a deal to buy PodcastOne. How the two companies are coming together is now taking shape and it is remaking both sides of the business. Such as how PodcastOne’s $5.1 million in revenue during the most recent quarter is making LiveXLive more ad focused. And how LiveXLive’s music reach will likely mean more music podcasts for PodcastOne.  Read more

“It was a noisy quarter all around,” said Libsyn President and Chief Operating Officer Laurie Sims on Monday. And while it may have been quiet on the search for a new CEO, Libysn did talk about how there have been some silver linings to the COVID-19 pandemic, when its new podcast hosting platform could be widely released, and even hinted an advertising alliance could be in the works. Here are five takeaways from the quarter call with investors. Read more

The Land On Demand app is the subscription-based mobile app from Good Karma Brands’ sports-formatted “850 ESPN Cleveland” WKNR. Fans of the Cleveland radio station will have one more podcast to select from on the app with the debut of The Rebound. Hosted by Emmett Golden, who currently co-hosts afternoon drive on WKNR as well as the weekly “Primetime” show on the ESPN Radio Network. Read more

It won’t put a face to a review, but it will put a voice to some. The consumer review platform Yelp is making podcast part of its marketing strategy with a new series called Behind the Review. The show is hosted by Yelp’s Small Business Expert, Emily Washcovick and features conversations with reviewers and business owners about their experiences—whether it was a positive or negative one – giving listeners behind-the-scenes insights and real life learnings. Read more

Monday, November 16, 2020
  • Updated

The first quarterly update from Libsyn since its management team shakeup brought continued grow in revenue. The company’s Q3 revenue grew five percent compared to a year ago. Most of that was driven by a 15% increase in its core podcast hosting business. Advertising continues to be a weak spot, with ad revenue down 22%. President/CEOO Laurie Sims called it a “solid” Q3 even though Libsyn swung to loss during the quarter. She said that was tied to payouts to its former CEO. Read more

A musician talking about music? That has been done. But a pop star hosting a show about supernatural experiences, the occult, unexplained mysteries, urban legends, psychedelic art, and spirituality, astrology? That is where Kesha, best known for her party tunes on top 40 radio, will break ground. She has teamed with the iHeartPodcast Network to launch Kesha And The Creepies. Read more

Osiris Media, which focuses on music- and culture-based podcasts, has launched a new Artist Spotlight podcast series. The company has already been partnering with musicians to create podcasts andreps say the new shows that it has cued up will formalize its focus on the segment with a slate of new podcasts with musicians at the helm. Read more

ESPN’s The Woj Pod today (Nov. 16) launches a special three-part narrative podcast series, The Giannis Draft, timed with this week’s 2020 NBA Draft. The series is hosted by ESPN Senior NBA Insider Adrian Wojnarowski and features exclusive access to the 2020 NBA M.V.P. Giannis Antetokounmpo, his agents and NBA front office powerbrokers that will chronicle one of the most fascinating behind-the-scenes draft processes in modern NBA history. Read more

  • Updated

Saving specific episodes is a feature that several podcast listening apps already feature. Now it will also be a tool that listeners will have at their fingertips when using Spotify. The company says it has added a “Your Episodes” feature. Separately, Hyundai and Spotify have come together on a local program that will feature three emerging artists that will create a curated virtual tour of their hometowns through music, podcasts and video. Read more

Global, the media company that is probably best known on this side of the Atlantic for operating the Digital Ad Exchange (DAX), is no stranger to content. It operates a variety of radio brands in the U.K. Now it is partnering with ad giant’s Dentsu’s content arm The Story Lab to expand its podcast lineup. The two companies have drawn up plans to release six podcasts within the next year. Read more

Friday, November 13, 2020
  • Updated

Podcasting’s share of audio listening jumped 29% during the past year according to the latest Share of Ear report from Edison Research. Its data shows podcasts accounted for nine percent of audio consumption among Adults aged 18 and older during the third quarter, up two points from a year earlier. AM/FM radio remains the dominant audio source with three-quarters of all of Americans’ listening time going to radio, but the Edison data shows podcast listening now ranks second. Read more

  • Updated

True Crime may have seen its downloads dip during the COVID lockdown weeks, but the genre has proven resilient in 2020. Podtrac says among the shows and publishers it measures, True Crime was the most popular category among the new shows released during the first three quarters of the year. Of the top 25 new podcasts for far in 2020, Podtrac says 12 are True Crime series. That includes eight of the top ten. That gave Wondery and iHeartRadio the most podcasts on the list. Read more

This week iHeartMedia CEO Bob Pittman recommitted to making diversity “a real priority” with a pledge that half of the company’s new podcasts will come from female and diverse creators. That goal took another step forward with the announcement that the popular mental health podcast Therapy for Black Girls will join the iHeartPodcast Network. The podcast, which has amassed more than 12 million downloads, is among the most popular among Black women. Read more

PodcastOne parent LiveXLive has announced it plans to add podcast-based “programming blocks” in the coming months to LiveXLive TV… Living Corporate has partnered with the Westwood One Podcast Network to monetize, market, and distribute its podcasts… Podcast listening is growing rapidly in India and Triton Digital will now have a piece of the action… University of Pittsburgh’s WPTS-FM wins top podcast honors from College Broadcasters Inc. Read more

Vets You Should Know is a new podcast timed for Veteran’s Day… The Dossier explores a possible cover-up of the murder of hip-hop superstar The Notorious B.I.G… Anything You Say takes listeners on a journey into the art of interrogation… Gamblers will document the underground lives and careers of six professional gamblers… The Jeff Richards Show is a new podcast from former “SNL” and MADtv cast member… Here is some of what is new in podcasts this week. Read more

Thursday, November 12, 2020

The Interactive Advertising Bureau has forecast podcast industry advertising will reach one billion dollars in 2021. It is giving that goal a shot in the arm this week at its annual Brand Disruptor Summit, presenting podcasting as an audio media disruptor itself that they should be given closer scrutiny towards in their media planning. “It seems intimidating, but when you have the data to back it up, you know you can do it,” said Rachel Roberts, Senior Marketing Manager for the deodorant brand Native. Read more

Who is Jill Scott? A podcaster, to turn a phrase from her breakout album. Now two decades after the singer came onto the scene, she has more to say than what music allows, and so she is launching a podcast. Jill Scott Presents: J.ill the Podcast is a new iHeartRadio Original Podcast series Scott is producing. “J.ill the Podcast will spark unfiltered conversations by and for Black women who influence culture and uplift sisterhood,” she said.  Read more

Podcast producers looking for that perfect sound bite will have another outlet. Veritone is expanding its library service that will allow creators to license their archives. In addition to giving podcasters, broadcasters and other audio creators access to audio clips for their programs, the new service will also provide them with opportunities to monetize their own audio archives. Stitcher and Audible are among customers already leveraging the new licensing service. Read more

PodcastOne has named veteran television marketing executive Ilana Susnow as its Head of Marketing and Audience Development. Susnow, who is based in New York, will oversee all marketing initiatives for PodcastOne and its numerous podcasts. In the newly created position within the podcasting giant, Susnow will report directly to PodcastOne CEO Peter Morris.  Read more

Luminary is taking on Spotify on its home turf and just days after speculation that Spotify may also be considering a subscription podcast listening option. Luminary says it will expand its service to four new countries, bringing its original content to the 27 million residents in the Nordic region. Sweden, Norway, Denmark, and Finland is now added to the Luminary map that already includes the U.S., U.K., Australia, South Africa, Ireland, and New Zealand.  Read more

Wednesday, November 11, 2020

All podcast adswork. But host-read ads work even better. That is according to research conducted by Stitcher, Midroll and Signal Hill Insights. It concludes host-read ads outperform since they serve as influencers among podcast listeners. “The good news is that all the ads we tested, announcer-read and host-read, generated a healthy amount of lifts,” the study says. Read more

News podcasts released bonus episodes as some weekly shows went daily while others offered live streams to keep up with the fast-changing election story. The result is downloads of News category shows jumped 13% last week, the most of any of the big genres measured by Podtrac. It reports among the shows and publishers it measures downloads increased one percent last week compared to the prior week. And downloads grew 45% from a year ago. Read more

Def Jam Recordings is set to become the latest record company to make a podcasting play. It has reportedly partnered with the iHeartPodcast Network and Double Elvis Productions to produce a ten-episode scripted series that will fuse a fictional scripted narrative with real artist interviews and exclusive music releases. The podcast is called Here Comes the Break and it is set for release in early 2021. Read more

The Black Effect Podcast Network, the network that radio personality Charlamagne Tha God is building with iHeartMedia, has inked rap superstar and entrepreneur Jay “Jeezy” Jenkins to its roster. Jenkins will host The (Re)Session Podcast that will be a riff off his upcoming album “The Recession 2.” Episodes of the podcast will take their cues from song titles with subjects such as mental health, economics, prison reform, and police brutality. Read more

Beasley Media Group, which has put its focus on creating locally targeted podcasts rather than national shows, has struck a new distribution partnership with Entercom. The move adds Radio.com as another outlet for the Beasley-produced podcasts. Since launching bPod Studios in December 2018, Beasley has created about 40 podcasts, including on-demand versions of some of its radio shows. Read more

Bitcast, the tool that allows podcast listeners to clip, collect and share on social media audio snippets from shows they are listening to, has struck an alliance with podcast recommendation service Podcast Notes. The two companies will jointly launch a new Podcast Notes listening app that will make clipping a key feature. Beyond serving as conversation starters, Bitcast founder Marcus Sonoma said that podcast clips are helping to tackle the podcast discovery problem. Read more

Tuesday, November 10, 2020

Spotify is beefing up its ad technology with a $235 million deal to buy Megaphone from the media conglomerate Graham Holdings. The podcast technology company provides hosting and ad-insertion capabilities for publishers and advertisers, most notably through the Megaphone Targeted Marketplace. The companies say by joining forces they will help advertisers “realize the full potential of podcasts.” Read more

Podcasting continues to lead the digital charge at iHeartMedia. The company says its podcast revenue soared 74% during the third quarter compared to a year ago. And in a sign of the continuing recovery of the ad market from last spring’s pandemic whack, iHeart said podcast revenue also increased 21% between second and third quarters. “Podcasting continues to be our strongest performing business line,” said CEO Bob Pittman. The company also disclosed it paid $50 million to buy Voxnest.

  Read more

Membership may have its privileges, but the process of creating and posting content for contributors to a podcast have not always been easy for all producers. So Patreon has teamed up with Acast to make patron-only podcast content available to listeners across the major podcast platforms. “Patreon and Acast have a shared mission of helping creators earn a sustainable income for their art,” said Patreon’s Brian Keller. Read more

Third quarter brought record revenue for Veritone, the artificial-intelligence tech company and the parent of audio ad agency Veritone One. The company said its revenue totaled $15.7 million during the quarter, a 23% increase compared to a year ago. Advertising revenue accounted for more than half of its business. “We are delivering on our mission to help public and private organizations conquer data complexity,” said CEO Chad Steelberg.  Read more

Riverside.fm, the tech startup created by Nadav Keyson and Gideon Keyson, which describes itself as a video podcasting platform, has emerged from stealth mode with $2.5 million in funding led by Silicon Valley investor Oren Zeey. The release comes as more podcasters are recording their shows from home. Riverside.fm enables users to record studio quality audio and video tracks regardless of where the recording location is. Read more

The new year will usher in a new host for The Argument, the weekly debate podcast created by the New York Times. Jane Coaston has been recruited from Vox to host the show beginning in early 2021 after the inauguration. She succeeds hosts Times Opinion writers Michelle Goldberg, Ross Douthat, David Leonhardt and Frank Bruni who have anchored The Argument since it launched two years ago. Read more

Monday, November 09, 2020

Pushkin Industries, the podcast studio co-founded by Jacob Weisberg and Malcolm Gladwell, is aligning with iHeartMedia. Under the agreement, Pushkin and the iHeartPodcast Network will also co-produce a slate of new, original podcasts over the next two years. And iHeart will become the exclusive sales partner for Pushkin’s catalog of podcasts. “Working with the team at iHeart will allow us to spread this joy at an even bigger scale,” said Gladwell. Read more

The podcast studio Wondery is reportedly seeking between $300 and $400 million in a potential sale, a price tag that, if it comes to fruition, would make such a deal the largest to date in the podcast industry. Just as noteworthy is who a bidder may be. Bloomberg reports Apple, which has to date focused on distribution not content, has held talks with Wondery. Sony Music Entertainment is also said to have looked at a deal. But Spotify has reportedly decided not to submit a bid. Read more

Perhaps it is just a survey question. Or maybe it is something under serious consideration. Either way, a query on a Spotify user survey has some wondering whether the streaming company will soon debut a subscription podcast option. The survey suggested a price on such a subscription would be between $3 and $8 per month and not include ad-free access to music. Read more

Entercom – the parent of Cadence13 and Pineapple Street – says it has no plan to cash-in on a consolidation wave in the podcast business. Entercom spent $48 million to acquire the two companies, and while other deals suggest they could easily turn a profit CEO David Field says that is not in the cards. “We think it is integral to what we do and adds value and symbiotic opportunities,” he said. Read more

A 22-year old cold case is bringing together all-news WTOP-FM Washington (103.5) and “Fox 5” WTTG-TV in a new podcast called Murder in a Safe Place. The series is hosted by Paul Wanger, who covered the story while he worked at the radio station before making the jump to television news. It examines the death of a hospital worker who was brutally assaulted and later found dead in her office. The podcast will launch as the second season of WTOP’s American Night series. Read more

QCode, the content studio and podcast network, has grown its executive team with the hiring of Sandra Yee Ling as Vice President of Production and Michele Zárate as Director of Development. QCode has promoted Tess Ryan to the role of Producer and Deron Johnson to Head of Music. These changes come on the heels of QCode recently bringing on new investor dollars in a round which was led by Sonos and C-Ventures. Read more

Friday, November 06, 2020

Powered by a growing portfolio, the iHeartPodcast Network hit new record highs for downloads and unique U.S. monthly audience during October, edging out NPR. Podtrac says the average U.S. unique monthly audience for the top ten publishers slipped one percent in October. That was in part due to an industry decision to remove Apple Watch listening from downloads. Here’s a look at the numbers. Read more

The focus on the coronavirus and the presidential election all but assured interest on news content would remain high last month. And when the download tally was in hand, Podtrac had the same result as it has every month for the past two years. Once again, the New York Times’ flagship morning news podcast The Daily was the most downloaded and streamed show. Read more

The list of celebrities who host podcasts has grown exponentially. Welcome to the club could be the response from Alec Baldwin. He has been hosting Here’s The Thing since 2011. In a move geared to giving his celebrity interview show a bigger platform, Baldwin has signed a deal to join the iHeartPodcast Network beginning in January 2021. “We’re breathing new life into a project I’ve been passionate about for nearly a decade,” said Baldwin. Read more

The E.W. Scripps Company may’ve spun-off its Stitcher podcast business, but it remains in digital audio with its ownership of Triton Digital. And the news there was good during the third quarter. Scripps said it had “solid financial results” at Triton where revenue increased to $11.4 million during the quarter, a 14% increase compared to a year ago. Read more

Rolling Stone magazine has signed a deal to market and distribute its podcasts through the Westwood One Podcast Network … Libsyn reports among the shows that its hosts the average number of downloads went up for episodes released in September … The ABC News flagship daily podcast Start Here, hosted by Brad Mielke, posted its first ever midday bonus episode on Wednesday afternoon, featuring the latest election news. Read more

ESPN is laying off 300 employees and will not fill 200 open positions as the sports network and its parent company Disney continue to deal with financial woes brought on by the pandemic. The layoffs will be spread across all departments of the network’s audio and cable TV operations but reportedly will not affect on-air personalities on ESPN Radio and ESPN TV, many of whom also host podcasts. Read more

New shows this week include Tenfold More Wicked, a new true podcast that blends narrative nonfiction storytelling and investigative journalism. Also new in true crime, is a new season of Hell and Gone, which looks at the mysterious disappearance of Malibu, CA woman. Other new shows include The Agitators, a new podcast that tells of the story of the friendship of Susan B. Anthony and Frederick Douglass. And The Secrets Hotline, a spinoff of the Love + Radio podcast feature. Here is some of what is new in podcasts this week. Read more

Thursday, November 05, 2020

Out of the ugliness of the coronavirus pandemic and the impact on the live events business has come what may be a beautiful new way of radio interacting with listeners. The compression of ten years of technology adoption into months has crated “new opportunities” according to Bob Pittman as iHeartMedia has rapidly expanded its podcast investment and reimagined some flagship events. “The consumer has reached out and bonded with us in new ways,” said Pittman. Read more

President Trump has been good for the New York Times, including its flagship morning podcast The Daily. With the election over, and the prospect that Trump may not win when the ballot counting is completed, CEO Meredith Kopit Levien does not sound worried. “We’re not reliant on any single story or topic to drive our growth,” she said. The Times reported digital revenue fell in Q3, but Kopit Levien said audio ads have been an area of “continued resilience.” Read more

Soaring podcast advertising revenue was one of the bright spots at Cumulus Media during the third quarter. The parent of the Westwood One Podcast Network said its podcast revenue was up nearly 50% during the third quarter. “Podcasting delivered record quarterly revenue, reflecting our particularly strong news-talk portfolio and our highest-ever download count,” said CEO Mary Berner. Read more

Podcastle, a company developing podcast creation tools for amateur and professional podcasters and a streaming platform for listeners, today announced their $1.75 million seed funding. The four-month old company said the new capital will help it roll out its new podcast creation feature. It relies on text-to-speech technology that uses artificial intelligence to convert news into podcasts in seconds. Read more

Wednesday, November 04, 2020

The reach and targetability of radio have meant the industry has had a long history with Black and Hispanic audiences who for decades were underserved by television. Today, as more marketers focus on reaching all market segments, that could play in audio’s favor. CMO Gayle Troberman says iHeartMedia has had a “reimagine moment” this year too, which led to a greater focus on podcasts from diverse creators and the launch of the Black Information Network. Read more

Apple wants podcasters to start thinking about the holiday season, and not just because it would like to sell some iPhones and Air Pods as gifts. The company has sent out its annual advisory to podcasters looking to submit a new show to Apple Podcasts that the regular five-day approval process will be delayed during Thanksgiving and Christmas. The company says delays are likely Nov. 20-30 and Dec. 23, 2020 and Jan. 2, 2021. Read more

Source Material, the newest series from Vice Media, has no host or professional reporters, but it aims to break ground in the way a podcast can tell a story. The unnarrated show will instead rely on the reality that in the world we live in, where odds are high that a camera is rolling capturing events either in the hands of someone who is there or by a mounted camera digesting all that it can see. “Everything in the show is built around this footage,” said producer Peter Lang-stanton in a preview. Read more

Revenue at Megaphone, the podcast hosting and advertising company, has “increased significantly” during the first nine months of 2020. That is according to its parent company Graham Holdings, which has told investors that Megaphone’s advertising and platform sales experienced “rapid growth” this year. Pinna, the children-targeted subscription podcast company, is also backed by Graham which said Pinna had revenue increases in the first nine months of 2020. Read more

Dawn Olmstead, who has led NBCUniversal’s Universal Cable Productions into podcasting, is jumping to Anonymous Content where she has been named CEO of the film and TV production company. As a producer of feature films, TV, commercials, and music videos, her move could mean Anonymous Content will also expand into podcasting. Olmstead fills the seat that had been held by Anonymous Content founder Steve Golin until his death in April 2019. Read more

Tuesday, November 03, 2020

Google continues to be focused on podcast discovery, as the tech giant continues to see search as its biggest role for the industry. That includes shifting search away from a show-based discovery to one that includes episode topics and people mentioned, similar to how articles on the web are found. “We’re excited to ramp our investments in the podcast space and take on the challenge of solving podcast discovery,” said Google Podcasts’ Gabe Bender at last week’s Podcast Movement. Read more

Podcast downloads held steady last week compared to a week earlier. But Podtrac says there is still a growth story to tell. Downloads during the final week of October were up 47% compared to the same period a year ago. Halloween brought a number of new releases in the True Crime category, and Podtrac reports among the big genres True Crime had the highest week-over-week download growth. Read more

Podchaser, the AI-powered podcast directory, has shared some statistics about how much podcasters have been talking about President Trump and former Vice President Joe Biden … WNYC Studios’ On The Media – the weekly public radio show and podcast – is offering a live stream that it says is an alternative to network coverage of election results … In a bit of unlikely timing, Indiana congressman Rep. Jim Banks is using Election Day to launch his own podcast. Read more

Oxford Road, the ad agency that specializes in podcast advertising, has expanded its executive team as it charts its own growth along with the audio and spoken word industry. The company has recruited ad agency veteran Steven Abraham to join Oxford Road as its new President. It has also brought veteran radio executive Kraig Kitchin and experiential learning company executive Jennifer Laine onboard as strategic advisors. “As many companies slowed down this year, we made a conscious decision to speed up,” said founder and CEO Dan Granger. Read more

Monday, November 02, 2020

Since the last time Americans voted for president, the podcast industry has grown exponentially both in terms of content offered and listening. As votes are casts and counted Tuesday, the role of podcasts in delivering news will be showcased like never before. The Daily, the New York Times-produced morning news podcast, and Futuro Media’s politics podcast In The Thick, will stretch the definition of the medium by producing live-stream Election Night shows. Many other podcasts are releasing special episodes and content. Read more

Penn National Gaming, the casino operator and online betting company that bought Barstool Sports in February for $163 million, says its tie-in to the sports and lifestyle podcast company is already paying off at a time when the casino business has been squeezed by the pandemic. The cross-promotional engine revved up during the third quarter with the launch of the Barstool Sportsbook app. And CEO Jay Snowden says there is a string of Barstool-branded sports bars on the drawing board. Read more