Ranker is a website that allows people to vote on everything from what’s the most ubiquitous podcast sponsor (Audible) to who the best guest was on The Joe Rogan Experience (author Graham Hancock). Now Ranker is expanding beyond crowdsourced rankings and getting into the podcast game itself with its first show. Keeping with its crowdsourcing model, Deadtime Stories, will tell spooky stories that have been submitted by fans of horror. Who the podcast’s host is isn’t entirely clear, and that’s by design. Ranker says each show is “introduced by the mysterious and darkly-humored skeleton host, DeadHead.”
The podcast is an extension of Ranker’s horror channel called Graveyard Shift. It has more than six million monthly unique visitors and a sizeable social media reach with11.5 million fans on Facebook. That will give the podcast a promotional platform to tap into.
“We’re thrilled and honored to be offering a means in which true horror fans can hear their own blood-curdling stories – true or not – on our podcast,” said Ranker CEO Clark Benson in a statement. “We know a lot about this no-longer-fringe genre, so it’s about time we give fans a chance to scare the hell out of us all.”
The first twelve episodes of Deadtime Stories have already been released with future new episodes published every Tuesday.
The podcast is hosted and distributed by Art19, adding Ranker to its growing list of media companies who are leveraging the technology platform. Art19 says its Targeted Ad Sales program will allow the show to sell its under-utilized inventory, as well as gain information about the show’s fan base through a variety of demographic, behavioral, and internet-based audience segments. Art19 also notes the Targeted Ad Sales program is now serving millions of ad impressions each month.
“We want listeners to feel their hearts race from bone-chilling audio journeys, not from annoyance at irrelevant ads,” said Art19 Chief Revenue Officer Lex Friedman in the announcement. “That’s why we’re thrilled that Ranker is using Art19’s SmartAudiences technology to send ads that are targeted so well, it’s scary,” he said.