More U.S. Hispanics say they have listened to a podcast that the total population overall – 56% versus 55%. But the content available does not reflect that. Spotify says there’s still a lack of representation in the industry, even among Hispanic creators. So it has launched an offshoot of its Sound Up podcast accelerator to target the audience segment. Sound Up Latinx aims to both inspire creators to launch shows as well as support those that do.
“We believe that bringing new voices to the table will unlock an even bigger growth opportunity, add some fresh perspectives to the general audience, and even stimulate other potential creators to start producing their own shows,” said Spotify Sound Up Manager Fernando Spuri in a blog post announcing the program.
The program will be divided into two parts. Sound Up Latinx will kick off with a virtual training program later this fall running over the course of four weeks before 10 participants shortlisted by Spotify will learn and cultivate the skills to create a podcast through a mix of live courses and on-demand how-to lessons about the art of making a podcast. The 10 participants will then pitch and submit a podcast trailer and proposal for the opportunity to be selected as a finalist to attend the subsequent Sound Up sessions in 2022.
“The podcast ecosystem is developing fast in the U.S. and it’s already one of the most consolidated in the world. However, when we check the podcasts charts, there’s a lot to be improved regarding diversity of creators. And with more than 60 million LatinX living in the U.S., it became clear that the LatinX community was the next to address with the program,” said Spuri. “We’ll have specific facilitators, guests, and content addressing issues like defining the language of the shows, how and if the creators want to address immigration issues, and even discussing what it means to be LatinX in the U.S. All these specific discussions are fundamental to this cohort but wouldn’t necessarily be for a broader group. This underlines the uniqueness not just of Sound Up U.S. LatinX, but of all Sound Up editions.”
Spotify launched the Sound Up program in 2018 to give underrepresented podcasters the tools to boost their platforms and build their own shows. Since its launch it has expanded the program from the U.S. to South America and Europe.
“We have a global framework for Sound Up that we use as a starting point, but after that, each Sound Up is unique, even different editions in the same country. Every Sound Up has a selected cohort, with specific needs and backgrounds, and the solutions are not replicable,” said Spuri. He said a program like Sound Up LatinX may tell stories that come from America but they could also have resonance round the world. “A show in Spanglish about K-pop made in Los Angeles from a second-generation Salvadorean podcaster can find an audience in a Dominican first-generation kid in New York, but also in Santiago, Madrid, and Oaxaca,” he suggested.
Spotify is now accepting applications for Sound Up LatinX through Oct. 1. Participants must live in the U.S. and be age 20 or older – immigration status is not a factor, it points out. Get more details HERE.