More and more ad-supported forms of media have introduced ways for users to pay their way out of seeing ads. Along with music streaming and video providers, social media is now joining the fray with Facebook introducing a paid ad-free version in Europe. While the move is largely motivated by legislative pressures, several other big names in social media are testing the ability to pay to get rid of ads, including TikTok. While the more affluent media consumers may be able to isolate themselves from the advertising market with subscriptions, podcasting is somewhat insulated from this issue. Free podcasts have primarily been ad-supported since the beginning, and the evolution of sponsored or branded shows have created a whole field of content that promotes a brand without continuing traditional ads. [Source]
Spotify’s Push Into Audiobooks Sparks Concern Among Authors by Ashley Carman
A new group named the Coalition of Concerned Creators seeks transparency from Spotify in regards to how audiobooks are compensated in their new streaming scheme, with specific focus on how authors will be paid. According to details of a deal shared with Bloomberg, Macmillan Publishers’ deal with Spotify is to total up all of the hours spent on partial listen-throughs. If a book is ten hours and five users only listened for an hour, it’s tallied as one full listen at a discounted royalty rate. In October a similar advocacy group, the Society of Authors, cautioned that under-paying authors for streaming audiobooks has the potential to be more harmful than underpaying musicians for song streaming, as audiobooks are largely only consumed once while music is often streamed repeatedly. A Spotify spokesperson maintains that their payout models are competitive with other audiobook sellers and publishers say they’re pleased with Spotify’s implementation of audiobook streaming. [Source]
The Crucial Timing of Ads
Advertising has a cadence depending on the time of year, and RedCircle aims to explain how that cadence impacts podcast advertising throughout the year. During lean January months when brands have smaller budgets, focus should be shifted to maximizing inventory usage (including back catalog) to get the most out of what ads a show can book. The rollercoaster of ad spend then is expected to tick upwards until mid-summer when, generally, a small dip happens as brands start to look forward to the end-of-year holiday spending season when they’ll use the rest of the annual budget. [Source]
Media Buying Briefing: Here are five media agency trends to watch in 2024 by Antoinette Siu and Michael Bürgi
Looking forward to the new year, Digiday looks at issues the advertising industry will have to tackle in 2024. Generative AI, of course, is on track to be a major influence in new tools and optimizations next year. Third party data and the death of cookies has yet another deadline set, this time for late 2024. Influencer marketing will continue its upward trend, with special focus given to the rise of social commerce and retail as platforms like TikTok integrate affiliate marketing natively into the app. With more shopping happening, brands will be looking for more ways of engaging with Gen Z and Gen Alpha. An age demographic podcasting has a pretty good track record with, if we may be so bold. [Source]
…as for the rest of the news: Rain News shares the audio-related highlights from Nieman Labs’ 2024 predictions, and Marketing Brew covers how Agencies of Record could become a thing of the past.