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This is the year that many in podcasting expect the industry to cross the $1 billion revenue mark. Whether that quietly happened in 2019 will be revealed when the IAB releases its revenue data in the coming months. And if not, whether the coronavirus impact on advertising could jeopardize that goal won’t be clear for months. Either way, media analyst Jack Myers has issued an update to his 2020 economic outlook. He still sees podcast revenue growing regardless. 

Myers forecasts podcast ad spending will increase 8% compared to a year ago. But even more remarkable is that podcasting will stand nearly alone among other media segments if Meyers’ predictions are accurate. While the industry is set for growth in 2020, he says every other form of ad-supported media will experience declines. That list includes broadcast and cable television, as well as print, out-of-home media, cinema advertising, event marketing, and telephone directories. In terms of audio, Myers also thinks podcasting will stand out since he thinks broadcast radio will be down by 30% and even streaming audio ad spending will contract 18% as marketers respond to a downturn in the economy.

“We project a 20% overall decline in 2020 ad spend,” said Myers. That compares with his earlier forecast of 6.2% growth for the year. In addition to podcasting, another bright spot in the outlook is a predicted 26% increase in ad spending for online video and OTT/addressable TV advertising. Myers forecasts total digital ad spending will decrease 9.3% in 2020 while traditional media advertising will fall 29%.

“Not surprisingly, the largest declines are being suffered by out-of-home and cinema advertising and experiential/event marketing,” he said in a blog post. “Local cable television is also among the worst hit, with our forecast significantly impacted by our expectation that Major League Baseball and NCAA sports will not resume until 2021, compounded by the dramatic impact of COVID-19 on the local retail economy.”