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Introducing The Download

Introducing The Download

Listen to the podcast version

Written By

Bryan Barletta

Know the Author

August 2, 2023

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I am incredibly proud to announce that, starting today at 4pm eastern, Sounds Profitable is bringing The Download to you daily.

If, after reading the article below, our new daily newsletter is not your speed, you absolutely can unsubscribe to the afternoon email you get today, without impacting your subscription to our main newsletter. We respect you and your inbox.

Last January, we got the idea of adding a Friday podcast and newsletter called The Download, built to keep those in the business of podcasting up to date not only with the most important news from our space or about our space, but also the news from other marketing, advertising, or content channels that impact our space. 

To build The Download, we created a massive reading list that I would comb through every morning and whittle down for the team to pick from and expand on. In 10 minutes or less, we aimed to provide you coverage meant for the business of podcasting, and I think we nailed it. But what we also realized was that we were leaving quite a bit of great coverage and education on the cutting room floor. So, we decided to expand it, and now we are pleased to announce that The Download will become a daily newsletter and podcast.

What Makes The Download Different?

The three keystones of The Download are: Respect, Objectivity, and Ownership.

We respect your time. I hope you’ve noticed that Sounds Profitable’s current newsletters are completely ad-free, with our Friday edition of The Download graciously sponsored by valuable content from Magellan AI. We will continue that ad- and clutter-free focus for the daily edition of The Download (Monday through Thursday), with Spreaker from iHeart providing four unique data points that we’ll be able to trend week to week. As a reminder, neither partner is given editorial preference or influence.

Each day we’ll highlight thought leadership and data snapshots from our partners and industry leaders, free of any ads or sales pitches, built to be put into action to grow podcasting. Every story we highlight will link to the original source, while also providing a concise summary of the story and how it impacts the business of podcasting. We’ll prioritize five primary stories, with other brief stories included at the end as “quick hits”. Then, we’ll close it out with partner highlights from our job board and press release portal. After piloting this project for several months, we can confidently say that less than 25% of the content we’re highlighting appears elsewhere in current podcast industry coverage, because we are uniquely focused on how podcasting sits in the broader media and advertising market.

And if it’s a slow news day, you’ll find no filler in our coverage of the industry. We won’t waste your time.

The Download, like everything from Sounds Profitable, strives for an impartial and objective take on developments in and around the audio industry. On a company level, Tom and I believe it’s important to disclose that we have never received outside investment, neither of us have or plan to hold board seats/equity/advisory roles with any company, we don’t offer any sort of work on commission, and our personal investment portfolios are managed by outside firms. Our 140+ partners know firsthand that we honor MNDAs and do not allow for partners to influence editorial in any capacity. We will not compromise on these points and we believe you shouldn’t either in where you source your industry news.

When it comes to the coverage we provide, there will be no value judgements, no editorial comments about the companies covered, or otherwise putting our thumb on the scales of media. Our aim is unbiased reporting and journalism, without comment other than to contextualize stories. Every piece of this newsletter is built for you to confidently copy and paste it to a client or your team, without having to rewrite it first.

The Download isn’t built for profit – it’s built for you to own. We are incredibly lucky to have been able to build a business that isn’t measured by subscription numbers (though, we’re proudly at over 8,000 subscribers) or open rates (still rockin’ 50%+ unique open rate!) or forced to find funding solely through advertising. So we’ve set our success metric for The Download as a more educated industry, which to us means that whether we directly educate our readers or we empower all of you to educate more people in this space, we will have succeeded.

As  with all of our content, we want you to use it. Take snippets of it and put it in your own newsletter, share it in your Slack channel, send it to your clients, even add it to your email signature. Whether that means taking a quote from one of Tom’s great articles, or highlighting coverage in The Download about the expected spending increase for back-to-school shopping this year, we want all of this to be the seeds of your own content. And while we’d love for you to reference where you got it from (grab our logos here!), we’d rather you use it than not. Creating content is hard – so let us be a building block or a spark of inspiration for you!

We also have carved out space specifically for thought leadership articles and highlights of unique data, provided by our partners, to continue to platform all their amazing work. This space is not for sale – it’s only for articles and facts that will help you grow your business.

Wrapping It Up

I’m incredibly proud of this project, which has been a lot of work from ideation to piloting, and I am confident it will prove to be valuable to the industry and valuable to you.

Again, if four more emails from us a week isn’t for you, we get it! You can unsubscribe just from that list, without missing out on our weekly content, when you get the email today. But, of course, we hope you’ll give the new daily version of The Download a shot.

For the first three months, Tom will voice the daily edition of the podcast. Manuela and Shreya are still onboard for the Friday recap that we all know and love, with Gavin continuing as editor and producer behind the scenes on both the daily and weekly editions. But just as I first started as the voice of The Download weekly recap before handing it to them, our goal is to replace Tom in that role and grow new talent and new voices. If you’re interested in it, we’d love to hear from you.

If you have a news source you love that covers podcasting, advertising, content, or marketing, absolutely send it our way so we can add it to our reading list. And, if you have news to share, please submit it to our press release portal so we can be aware of it and provide coverage when relevant. If you have any open positions relevant to the world of podcasting, don’t forget to submit to our job board

Podcasting has grown substantially, but the coverage of our space leaves a lot to be desired. Outlets larger than podcasting don’t see the financial value of highlighting our space with expert coverage, but they do seem to find it valuable and easier to generate negative coverage about our industry. And hey, that gets clicks. Thanks to your support, we’re equipped to provide you coverage of advertising, marketing, and content far past podcasting to remind you where we excel, where we’re falling behind, and how podcasting can take its rightful place in the media ecosystem. 

Thank you for making all of this possible.

New Partners

Sounds Profitable exists thanks to the continued support of our amazing partners. Monthly consulting, free tickets to our quarterly events, partner-only webinars, and access to our 500+ person slack channel are all benefits of partnering Sounds Profitable.

  • Dear Media: The podcast network and brand incubator of the future, catapulting talent and creators to new heights.

  • Audion: Audio adtech specialists delivering measurable performance across the entire audio ecosystem.

Want to learn more about partnership? Hit reply or send us an email!

About the author

Bryan Barletta (He/Him) is the founder of Sounds Profitable, and a widely-cited expert in adtech, sales, and monetization of podcasting. He founded Sounds Profitable in 2020 after a successful career working with some of the leading companies in advertising technology, including AdTheorent, Claritas, and Megaphone. Barletta helped to design some of the tools in use by podcast platforms today for attribution, measurement, and serving audio ads, and uses that expertise to help clients and sponsors get the most from their sales and advertising efforts. He founded Sounds Profitable initially as a platform to help educate persons working in the podcast industry about advertising and sales technology, but has since expanded the brand to become the industry’s premiere source for education, advocacy, and insights designed to grow the entire space. He is an avid gamer and father of two boys, neither of whom have their own podcast, yet.

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