RadioPublic’s mission as a Public Benefit Corporation is to “help listeners discover, engage with, and reward the creators of podcasts and other audio.”
This is also our strategy, and our roadmap. We are starting with discovery, and will be layering in engagement next, followed by rewards — both for producers and listeners themselves.
Lots of interesting stuff from the press release: no account creation requirements (hallelujah!), it unbundles episodes into cross-show genre playlists and it has both human and machine based recommendations.
There’s a lot of podcasts all of a sudden, and some of them are amazing, so as a creative person I’m rooting for them all – but there’s a lot of them and they’re all broadcasting the same ads, so I’m not sure that the pool of ad money there is enough to drive it all. So I do worry that we are in some kind of bubble.
I think this is more a symptom of a nascent advertising market. As more and more advertisers see the value in podcasts (which I feel we are already seeing, look at the growth of ad networks like Midroll) there will be a larger pool of advertisers wanting to buy podcast ads.
The social audio app Anchor that launched on iOS in February, is now available on Android. I’m still skeptical that there is demand for casual mainstream audio creation and it seems that Anchor is having trouble getting larger creators to use their platform.
Radiolab signed up seven months ago but hasn’t published anything new on Anchor since then. Hopefully, the company will be able to get major contributors excited with the prospect of reaching a larger audience across the globe.
The stories available on the platform will be easily searchable and contain familiar content aggregated from elsewhere
While the main story in the article is about how shorter form content will fit into a listener’s day, I think there is a larger story here about an inevitable move towards episode ‘unbundling’. In the same way that readers use Facebook to consume news from multiple publishers rather than reading, say, the New York Times cover to cover, this will come to bear on podcast publishers.
With Audible’s Channels or 60db aggregating content and presenting it as a single experience, publishers will lose control on the delivery of their content and the ability to build and own their audience.
Delaney Simmons, Director of Social Media at WNYC, writing on Medium, noted some interesting engagement stats:
WNYC shows have been seeing great results. On Twitter, the average engagement for an audiogram is 8x higher than a non-audiogram tweet and on Facebook some of our shows are seeing audiogram reach outperform photos and links by 58% and 83% respectively.
During a recent episode of the Gimlet Media Inc. podcast “Reply All,” for example, 85% of listeners who began the program on Spotify were still listening by the 12th minute of the show, which covers internet culture. At roughly the 16th minute, when the ad break started, the audience dipped to 77% of the original listeners. It then bounced back to about 85% after the ad finished. Spotify is a new entrant to the podcast world, so that sample only represents a few thousand people, said Gimlet co-founder Matt Lieber.
“The podcasting form is completely saturated with great but long-form, highly-produced podcasts,” [Andrea Seabrook, the new D.C. bureau chief for American Public Media] said. “We want to do something that’s quick and dirty that brings people what they want to hear, an exciting take and point of view from what happened last night.”