Today in the business of podcasting:
A brief programming note before we get started: tomorrow, Wednesday the 6th, there will not be an afternoon edition of The Download. We’ll see you Thursday!
YouTube’s Growth As A Podcast Power Player Revealed In Cumulus Media And Signal Hill Insights’ Podcast Download – Fall 2023 Report by Pierre Bouvard
The seventh edition of the Podcast Download report is built from an in-depth survey of 608 weekly podcast listeners conducted by MARU/Matchbox. Key findings include the growth of people who only watch podcasts as video, which has grown from 8% to 14%. YouTube is the “used most” platform among heavy podcast consumers (6+ hours in the past week), podcast newcomers, and “pioneers” who started consuming podcasts four or more years ago. 56% of respondents who found a podcast on YouTube will consume that podcast on other platforms as well. [Source]
Spotify’s Holistic Approach to Contributions to the Canadian Broadcasting System
Earlier this year new legislation was proposed in Canada that would take existing restrictions for traditional media (such as certain amounts of TV needing to be Canadian-produced) and bring them to the digital audio world, including podcasts. Spotify has given a statement to the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission, the first big name in audio to formally speak on the matter. The streamer has urged the commission to clearly define what qualifies as Canadian-made and Indigenous content, as well as reconsider what criteria are used to calculate the minimum amount a streamer must spend promoting that content. Spotify’s holistic approach to platforming Canadian content in Canada includes several live events and regularly-updated playlists of Canadian and Indigenous music curated by Spotify staff. If the current wording of the Broadcasting Act and the associated commission were acted on, the cost would require Spotify to cut expenses, pare back their existing programs, and potentially require Spotify to raise prices in Canada. [Source]
Nielsen 2023 Consumer Survey Report
This newest Nielsen consumer survey is built from the responses of 3,000 people in the U.S. aged 18+ back in April. The top three key findings include 95% of respondents expressing concern inflation will impact their buying power, 55% were subscribe to paid, ad-free video services (note: the ad-free video streaming landscape has changed since April), and 46% say they do not enjoy ads interrupting content in a situation where the ad can’t be skipped. As far as podcasting goes, Nielsen finds podcasts are the medium that will see the most growth in 6-12 months when it comes to consumers increasing their consumption rate. 21% of respondents said they intend to listen to more podcasts than they currently do, while 71% said they plan to maintain their current consumption rate. [Source]
Magna: Global Ad Revenues Grow 5.5% In 2023, U.S. Up 3.6%.
Magna projects ad revenue worldwide will reach $853 billion by the end of the year, a 5.5% year-over-year growth, and then projects this momentum will carry on to a 7.2% increase next year. Ad spend has picked up in the second half of 2023 and will reach 6.3% y-o-y growth. Most traditional media spend has trended downwards throughout the year. Magna attributes this to traditional TV, audio, publishing, and out-of-home being particularly vulnerable to slow, uncertain macroeconomic climates. Zooming in on just the U.S. ad market, the audio ad market also improved over the second half the year, declining 4% overall throughout the year. Magna projects the momentum from that second half will build to reach an overall 0.4% audio ad sale growth by the end of 2024. [Source]
Podcast Companies Begin to Advertise Like Hollywood Studios by Katie Deighton
To promote the new series Tis the Grinch Holiday Podcast, Wondery has employed a pop-up experience in a Los Angeles mall. The 1,200 square foot space is themed after the Grinch, features both espresso and cotton candy stations, and a character actor portraying the green menace appears for photo shoots on weekends. As the medium grows, brands have to find new ways (or in this case, old ways from other mediums) to stand out, leading to it becoming not uncommon to see a podcast-related advertisement in Times Square. Another page from Hollywood’s book that podcasting has taken: making a brand out of the studio instead of individual shows. In the same way one promotes a streaming service, or a movie studio with a cult following (e.g. A24, or Blumhouse), podcast producers like The Economist are starting to sell their premium platforms instead of individual podcasts. [Source]
…as for the rest of the news: Linkfire has launched their Linkfire for Podcasts product (including the Sounds Profitable’s own podcast landing page), Apple crowns Lemonada Media’s Wiser Than Me the 2023 Show of the Year, Digiday covers how brands can limit programmatic wastage, and Spotify has announced the cancellation of Heavyweights and Stolen, both of which can be shopped around for a new home after their current seasons are finished.