SoundStack Hires Digital Audio Vet Michael Fischer To Expand Streaming Audio

SoundStack, the audio-as-a-service (AaaS) company, announces the appointment of Michael Fischer as Vice President of Business Development. The appointment bolsters the company’s growing publisher discipline – which also includes customer enablement, support, and podcast business teams – with a further focus on broadcast audio enterprises, including National Public Radio member stations.

“With years of experience in multiple ends of the audio ecosystem – from mobile, to enterprise tech platforms, to renowned communications companies – Michael brings tremendous knowledge that will make it easier for an array of streaming businesses to grow,” stated Rockie Thomas, CRO of SoundStack. “He’s a perfect addition to the team as we continue to work with publishers who understand how partnering with an independent tech platform will open up to more choices and, in turn, more listeners and streaming/podcast revenue.”

An all-encompassing tech platform, SoundStack combines podcast/streaming audio hosting/delivery, monetization, and insights in one place. Advertising and publisher partners on or off “the stack” can also buy and sell audio ads programmatically in the SoundStack Marketplace.

Fischer has been selling digital services to media companies for more than a decade, with an emphasis on audio streaming. He joins the team after nearly seven years as EVP/Business Development with mobile application provider AirKast, where he guided broadcasters, podcasters, and independent audio communities on content and sales strategies. His varied experience includes over four years at Triton Digital as SVP of Engagement, and he was Director of Business Development RAIN (Radio and Internet News).

First focusing on a range of broadcast audio enterprises in the U.S., Fischer will also spearhead development of global markets.

About SoundStack

SoundStack is the audio-as-a-service (AaaS) company for every kind of digital audio business – podcasters, digital broadcasters, platforms, advertisers and more. Giving those businesses equal access to big tech that’s easy-to-use, and the ability to connect with any provider across the market, SoundStack makes audio hosting/delivery, monihtazation, and analysis simple and effective for everyone. Fully independent, the company’s team of 70+ audio tech experts is guided only by what delivers the best results for its 14k+ customers. SoundStack is headquartered in Pittsburgh with offices around the country, and is the parent company of Live365.

Visit for more info.

Spoken Word Audio In U.S. Hits Highs For Audience Reach and Share

Spoken word audio listening time and audience size attain record highs in the U.S. according to The Spoken Word Audio Report 2023 released from NPR and Edison Research. The fifth iteration of the annual report places special focus on listening locations and explores spoken world audio consumption at home, at work, in-car, or other locations. The findings were presented in a webinar hosted by National Public Media (NPM) VP of Sponsorship Marketing Lamar Johnson and Edison Research VP Megan Lazovick and are available now at audio.

Key findings from the report include:

Spoken Word Audience size and listening time attain record highs: Almost half (48%)— approximately 135M people — of those in the U.S. age 13+ listen to some type of spoken word audio daily, up two percentage points (46%) from last year. Listeners in the U.S. age 13+ spend 31% of their daily audio time with spoken word, which is a 55% increase over nine years ago (20%).

Spoken word listening at home has grown dramatically: Sixty percent of the total daily audio time spent with spoken word audio is at home, 24% in the car, 13% at work, and 3% at some other location. The time spent listening to spoken word audio at home has grown to 41 daily minutes in 2014. Increases in at-home spoken word audio listening are seen across every hour in the listening day.

Spoken Word listening in-car has shifted post-pandemic, but AM/FM radio remains on top: Of all the daily time spent listening to spoken word audio, time spent listening in the car has declined from 36% in 2014 to 24% in 2023. In the car, 62% of spoken word audio consumed by those in the U.S. age 13+ is to AM/FM radio content, including over the air and streams.

For the first time ever, the mobile device is the primary way people listen to Spoken Word: 39% of spoken word audio consumed daily by this age 13+ in the U.S. is on a mobile device, followed by 35% on an AM/FM radio receiver. At home, 41% of spoken word audio is consumed on a mobil device, and at work, 47% of spoken word is consumed on a mobile device. AM/FM radio receivers still dominate in-car, garnering 60% of the token word audio listening there.

Podcasts represent a large and growing share of spoken word listening: Podcasts now represent over one-third (36%) of time spent with spoken word audio. Twenty-eight percent of time spent listening to podcasts goes to NPR/public radio. At home, 40% of spoken-word audio listening goes to podcasts.

“Each year we keep a close eye on the number of people who are listening and the amount of time spent with Spoken Word Audio. We’re happy to see that for 2023, more people than ever are listening and they are spending even more time with Spoken Word, providing a powerful opportunity for brands looking to expand and engage their audience.” said NPM VP of Sponsorship Marketing Lamar Johnson.

“Podcasting now accounts for over one-third of the time spent with spoken word audio. The cultural shift to digital benefits this space, or perhaps, it’s vice versa – the growing enthusiasm for podcasting is shifting the culture digital. Either way – podcast listening continues to grow,” said Megan Lazovick, VP at Edison Research,

How the study was conducted

Edison Research’s Share of Ear is a quarterly survey of Americans who are asked to keep a detailed one-day diary of their audio usage. Share of Ear utilizes a nationally representative sample of those age 13+. The sample for this study was 4,193.

Acast Brings Real-Time Planning To Podcast Advertising

Acast, the world’s largest independent podcast company, announced the continued expansion of its self-serve podcast advertising platform with real-time campaign planning tools for both advertisers and podcasters.

This latest innovation from Acast focuses on improving efficiencies in the media planning process by allowing advertisers to see up-to-date inventory availability for host-read sponsorship campaigns. Through a new feature called Availability Calendar, advertisers can now see all of the host-read sponsorship inventory available across Acast’s entire marketplace at that exact moment as well as the price of each podcast to ensure that it fits their campaign budget. 

This increased transparency significantly reduces the time that it currently takes advertisers to plan and book host-read sponsorship campaigns as well as makes it easier to distribute ad spend across multiple podcasts at the same time.

These new tools also give podcasters more control over their monetization potential through the recently launched AdCollab feature. Within AdCollab creator portal, podcasters can now instantly see a list of all the brands interested in working with them. The portal also now enables podcasters to instantly accept or reject brand proposals and allows them to connect directly with advertisers to immediately begin planning the production. With this improved visibility, podcasters can easily identify and act on more opportunities to earn money and grow from their craft.

These real-time media planning and collaboration tools follow a series of innovations to Acast’s self-serve platform since launching last year. In June, Acast made host-read sponsorships available on the platform, which provided advertisers access to the largest marketplace of podcast influencers. Soon after, Acast announced AdCollab, which enabled advertiser and podcaster collaboration for the first time. AdCollab also introduced automation into the host-read sponsorship buying process and has effectively reduced the time to book host-read campaigns by 85%.

“In launching our self-serve advertising platform and bringing AdCollab to market, Acast has made it easier than ever to book and produce podcast advertising campaigns. Now, we are helping advertisers to improve the efficiency of their campaign planning,” said Senior Director of Product at Acast Milly Botes. “Globally, podcast ad spend is inadequately distributed to the largest shows, but by improving planning and discoverability tools for advertisers, Acast is increasing the scalability of their brand message while also making it possible for each of the more than 100,000 podcasters on Acast to earn money from their craft.”

This news comes on the heels of Acast’s third quarter earning results. Globally, Acast saw a 32% increase in net sales growth and celebrated the milestone of having paid more than $300 million directly to podcasters since 2014.

Since launching in November of last year, Acast’s self-serve podcast advertising platform has grown to service organizations of various sizes and industries, from small to medium sized businesses, to household brand names, and even to podcasters themselves. In that time, nearly 40% of advertisers booked repeat campaigns.

To begin booking your host-read sponsorship campaigns through Acast’s self-serve advertising platform, please visit:

Veritonic’s Unprecedented Flexibility & Granularity Enhancements Transform Audio

Veritonic, the industry’s comprehensive audio analytics and research platform, has unveiled a series of groundbreaking innovations for their audio attribution solution, including unparalleled flexibility and granularity for advertisers and brands. With an intensified focus on investing in cutting-edge big data technology, combined with its conversion event logs and robust user interface, Veritonic is addressing the escalating demands of the industry and reshaping the audio attribution landscape.

By increasing its investment in robust data tech stacks, Veritonic facilitates campaigns of all scales, effortlessly expanding measurement capabilities while upholding optimal performance, support, and adherence to Service Level Agreements (SLAs). Furthermore Veritonic’s conversion event logs provide clients with unparalleled flexibility and granularity, enabling them to comprehend conversion events and associated impressions throughout. 

Veritonic’s comprehensive conversion event logs enable their clients to model and analyze impressions, uncover geotargeting opportunities, evaluate IP distribution, analyze listener overlap among different campaigns, and more.

“As data providers, we take great pride and responsibility in ensuring that our audio measurement methodology is sound, understood, and designed in a way that enables us to continuously adapt to the needs of our clients and the demands of the advertising industry at large.,” said Scott Simonelli, CEO of Veritonic. “We remain committed to innovating our audio-first solutions to make measuring and optimizing audio campaigns as streamlined, efficient, and flexible as possible.”

For more information about Veritonic’s Audio Attribution capabilities or to get started, visit the website or contact

About Veritonic

World-renowned brands, agencies, publishers, and platforms rely on Veritonic’s comprehensive audio research and analytics platforms to research, test, and measure ROI of their audio assets and campaigns pre-market, in-market, and post-campaign. The resulting insight enables clients to gain confidence in their audio investment, mitigate risk through optimization, and increase their return as they engage consumers with compelling audio experiences.

Audiochuck To Launch Exclusive SiriusXM Channel

SiriusXM announced a new agreement with independent media and podcast company audiochuck and its founder Ashley Flowers to launch a new channel exclusively for SiriusXM subscribers. 

Expected early next year, the channel will be curated by Ashley and the team at audiochuck to present episodes from the deep archive of its flagship show Crime Junkie – one ofthe country’s top-ranked podcasts – along with selections from its other top rated shows, such as Anatomy of a Murder, The Deck, CounterClock, and Park Predators.

In addition, Ashley Flowers will host a new series for the channel featuring in-depth conversations with celebrities and special guests about how they became Crime Junkies.

“I’m incredibly excited about the opportunity of reaching entirely new audiences with our content through SiriusXM’s wide reach. There has never been a true crime channel in audio, and I’m thrilled SiriusXM chose us to create the first ever channel by and for Crime Junkies,” said Ashley Flowers, audiochuck’s Founder and Chief Creative Officer. “We have such a deep catalog of content to share, but I am most excited about the new original programming we will do specifically for SiriusXM subscribers. SiriusXM has been an incredible partner to us over the last two years and I’m looking forward to working with them in even more ways in the years to come.”

The new channel and show is an expansion of SiriusXM’s relationship with audiochuck, which started in 2021 with an agreement that gives SiriusXM exclusivity to ad sales rights for the network’s acclaimed and award-winning podcasts via SXM Media, the combined advertising sales group from Sirius XM Holdings Inc.

“Ashley and her team at audiochuck have become the leaders in the incredibly popular true crime podcast space through their passion for high-quality audio and a storytelling style that’s both compelling to the listener and respectful of the subject matter,” said Scott Greenstein, SiriusXM’s President and Chief Content Officer. “With this new channel, and the combined marketing power of SiriusXM, audiochuck will be able to super serve their loyal listeners through an entirely new way to experience and interact with their shows, while further growing their fanbase by reaching audiences who may not yet be podcast consumers.”

This new audiochuck channel is SiriusXM’s latest endeavor to give popular podcasts a new platform, and SiriusXM subscribers exclusive access, having previously launched the Freakonomics Radio channel, which features programming from across the popular Freakonomics Radio Network catalog; as well as the Crooked Radio takeover last year, which brought Crooked Media’s Pod Save America and many of their other hit podcasts to Progress (channel 127) in the lead up to the midterm elections.

More details will be announced soon.

CEntrance Ships “The English Channel” Portable Channel Strip

CEntrance is now shipping The English Channel, a portable analog channel strip for recording on the road that features a mic pre with dynamics, a parametric EQ, and an audio interface with unique online streaming capabilities. Since 2009, Entrance has enabled artists to deliver projects at such high quality that their clients couldn’t tell they weren’t recorded in a pro studio.

The Company’s new “English Channel” continue that tradition, delivering an audio recorder and a portable streaming studio for podcasters, musicians, journalists, and YouTubers. The new analog production tool is a set of three, premium-quality, signal-processing devices made of tough, lightweight aluminum – to help survive the stress of the road.

The product includes a high-gain mic preamp, an analog dynamics processor, an analog parametric EQ, and an audio interface, all housed inside a small desktop cradle no larger than a book. The compact audio processor connects to laptops, phones, and tablets, and allows content creators to record on the spot, or instantly go live, anywhere in the world. Plus, the built-in 24-bit 48K SD card recorder works without a computer.

The Central English Channel is powered by USB and comes with a lightweight carry case. It all fits in a backpack, perfect for broadcasting from remote scenic locations. The English Channel retails for $1,599. USD, and is available now.

“Our world demands fast content. But you can’t always work in your studio and your phone just doesn’t deliver professional audio results from its built-in-mic,” said Michael Goodman, Entrance’s Founder and CEO. “We bridge that gap and make it easy to produce high-quality audio, away from your studio. Professional podcasters, journalists, and touring artists can now record and broadcast top-quality audio without packing a heavy rack of gear. We help deliver professional results from almost any location, even without a computer, to simplify your rig and let you travel light.”

Centrance specifically chose analog technology for audio quality, road-worthy reliability, and ease of use. The built-in Noise Gate, Compressor, De-Esser, and 3-band ‘British’ Parametric EQ all feature tactile controls – and purposely avoid distracting screens or complicated menus – to help the performer focus on the art. 

The time-proven analog technology means no crashes, reboots, or firmware updates, offering the crucially important simplicity of a high-pressure, one-person show. All knobs can be operated quickly and without looking – a benefit for a busy artist working in less-than-ideal conditions. 

The English Channel allows the artist to use any XLR microphone, reduce background noise, add body and confidence to their sound, and go online from anywhere, all in broadcast quality. The unique combination of “Signal Processor & Audio Interface” lets the user quickly shaper their sound and start live streaming or recording at the touch of a button.

The audio interface at the heart of the English Channel adds benefits to the built-in analog channel strip. Using the three included mic preamps, the host can add mics and set up a two or three-person podcast. The English Channel can record the program to the SD card, while simultaneously streaming it via the connected phone to YouTube Live, Instagram, Facebook, and more.

Centrance offers the choice of either MixerFace or PortCaster as the recording interface in the package, to better suit the needs of Musicians or Podcasters. The three compact devices in the English Channel can be used separately, or together as part of the bundle, secured inside a sleek desktop cradle. As a portable recording interface with a full suite of analog signal processing tools, the English Channel can be a bonus for recording engineers, who may enjoy using it as an analog insert for their DAW.

About CEntrance

Entrance is known for its work with top Hollywood artists and producers and has been perfecting design miniaturization for years. For recording artists who need quality audio without the hassle, Centrance offers virtually indestructible travel gear that is easy to use on the spot. Unlike other bulky, complicated options, Centrance products are designed to minimize distractions and inspire the Power to Create.

By focusing on simplicity and customer service, the company delivers an intuitive experience that removes the barriers to creativity. Famous recording artists, producers, voice-over artists, and journalists endorse Centrance audio solutions. Centrance products are made in Chicago. We provide great customer support and have a passionate following.

Brands Are Safer Than They Think On Podcasts

A new study has revealed that consumers are highly accepting and open to podcast advertising despite persistent brand concerns about suitability and safety. 

The research, conducted by Alter Agents – an independent market research consultancy – in partnership with Audacy, found that podcasts provide a safe advertising environment for brands, with eight in 10 consumers finding branded podcast messages suitable as long as they are contextually relevant, even when it comes to controversial content. Podcasts garner an engaged listening environment that bolsters attention, with 80% of listeners claiming they listen to ads, most as they enjoy the whole podcast.

The study identified key themes regarding brand safety and suitability in podcast advertising for marketers and consumers. The B2B community listed controllability, genre-specific myths, trade-offs of produced vs host-read advertisements, and the complex categorizations of podcasts. Consumers indicated ads must be a good fit within the content, hosts must be authentic, and controversial topics in the content can be acceptable and even enjoyed as long it is not defamatory towards one group.

Engagement and ad fit are also fairly consistent across genres. Ad parings in potentially controversial genres like true crime and news genres perform similarly to less contentious genres like sports and health/fitness/lifestyle pairings.

Brand fit is not an issue for listeners. Few say they have heard ads unsuitable for the podcasts they listen to but are more likely to call out ads sounding too much like a sales pitch or not being more native to the podcast style as reasons for unsuitability or poor fit.

Foul language is not a top reason for not listening to a podcast, but where content or hosts cross the line is through racist statements. In fact, foul language is accepted in many genres, especially comedy, entertainment/pop culture, music, and true crime.

“This study illustrates that with the right mix of authenticity and awareness, brands have an incredible opportunity to foster trust and loyalty with listeners of all backgrounds in the ever-expanding space,” said Jenna Weiss-Berman, Executive Vice President, Podcast, Audacy. “Today’s podcast listener is open-minded and willing to engage with a wide range of brands on multiple levels as they consume content ranging from true crime to investigative documentaries to comedy, sports, entertainment and beyond.”

“Brand safety is critically important, and there’s a perception in the marketplace that certain genres of podcasts may not be as brand-safe, given the free-form host-driven nature of podcasts. In turn, podcast advertisers have hesitated to leverage the reach and scale of podcasts to remain brand-safe,” said Idil Cakim, Senior Vice President of Research and Insights, Audacy. 

“While brands are smart to assess the risks and rewards of advertising on podcasts, they may be missing out on reaching critical consumers. That’s because podcasts deliver highly engaged audiences, create prime listening environments, and host authenticity offers a strong personal connection to listeners.”

“Audacy’s study does a great job of highlighting that the material qualitative and technical advancements in brand safety and suitability within the podcast industry have mitigated a perceived risk for brands to advertise on podcasts,” said Kurt Kaufer, Co-Founder, Ad Results Media. “It also nicely contextualizes the positive listener perceptions of brands who make podcast ad investments a material part of their marketing mix.”


Audacy partnered with Alter Agents and leading media agencies for this 2023 study to assess brand safety perceptions among media industry executives and frequent podcast listeners. Audacy commissioned the 2023 Alter Agents study. Four audio and podcasting company executives were interviewed. 6,000 respondents were surveyed through a 20-minute online survey collected between July 28 and August 3, 2023. Participants were a nationally representative sample based on age, gender, and ethnicity.

AudioUK Highlights Competition Concerns

AudioUK, the trade body for independent audio production companies, has responded to the BBC confirming that it will be moving a significant part of its speech audio production to BBC Studios by April 2024.

This will mean the BBC will be competing against the independent audio production sector to make audio content, including podcasts, for other commissioners such as Amazon, Audible, and Wondery.

This element is not covered by Ofcom requirements in approving the move, which instead focused on a level playing field when Studios competes against production companies for BBC commissions.

AudioUK is therefore calling for further investigation and for all of BBC Radio and Audio’s non-news programme commissions, including BBC Sounds, to be open to competition for external producers, in the event of this key part of BBC speech audio production moving to BBC Studios.

Whereas there is 100% competition for BBC TV programmes, in audio commissioning, the BBC must currently open up 60% of ‘eligible hours’ in its network radio commissions to external competition by the end of this year. This lower target was based on the fact that much of the BBC’s radio and audio production remained in-house and they could not make programmes for other buyers.

Chloe Straw Managing Director of AudioUK, said:

“While we respect the BBC’s right to explore other opportunities, this does nevertheless have competition implications as it involves moving a production arm built with public funding into the wider commercial market to compete with creative SMEs, a market largely built over the last 20 years by hard work and creativity of those SMEs. This aspect is not covered by Ofcom’s approval requirements and so has not been effectively scrutinized.”

“We are disappointed that the BBC has not taken our concerns on board and we will continue to push for a review of the wider market implications of these plans with the relevant governmental and regulatory authorities. In particular, as we have previously stated, we believe this move should be accompanied by creative SMEs all around the UK being given the opportunity to compete for 100% of BBC audio non-news output.”

Podster Enters Major Deal With RTL Deutschland To Globalize German Podcasts

Podster continues to make waves in the podcasting industry with a new licensing agreement

 In an exciting milestone, the Danish podcast company is teaming up with Germany’s leading media house, RTL Deutschland, to adapt and distribute high-quality German podcasts to a global audience.

Podster specializes in adapting local podcasts into new formats to reach a larger audience and bring in more revenue for publishers. In its relatively brief existence, the young startup has now inked its first deal with Audio Alliance, the audio unit of leading German entertainment network RTL Deutschland, bolstering its portfolio of international collaborations that already includes BBC Sounds, DPG Media, and Grupo Planeta.

Audio Alliance develops, produces and broadly distributes a diverse portfolio of podcasts, all of them premiering with a first window RTL+, RTL’s all inclusive entertainment product combining premium video and music streaming with a large selection of audiobooks, magazines and podcasts.

“It’s particularly meaningful that as a small startup, we have the chance to take on podcast releases from the industry giants. We approach this partnership with a deep sense of humility, which is also reflected in the way we produce these adaptations,” comments Podster’s CEO Henriette Høj Gharib.

Podster will adapt several RTL+ shows, including Der Letze Sommor von Lady Di, which delves into the final weeks of Princess Diana’s life, along with the gripping and top-performing true crime series Verbrechen von nebenan.  RTL+’s new and intriguing Hollywood Crimes is also part of Podster’s selection. 

Henriette Høj Gharib mentions, “Our work and success at Podster demonstrates that the podcast market is ready to expand high-quality content, mirroring the scaling seen in books, movies, and series over the years.”

“At RTL+, we are enthusiastic about the partnership with Podster. Together, we are set to expand our podcast content’s global footprint, providing diverse, engaging shows to audiences worldwide,” adds Andrea Zuska, SVP Content Strategy at RTL and Managing Director Audio Alliance.

About Podster & RTL Deutschland

Podster is a podcast company based in Copenhagen, Denmark. Their goal is to introduce best-selling podcasts to new markets by locating amazing podcasts from all over the world and reproduce them to other languages.

RTL Deutschland is Germany’s leading entertainment company, spanning across all types of media: TV and streaming, print and digital, radio and podcasts. It is home to some of the country’s strongest media brands from RTL to Stern, Brigitte to Vox and Geo to NTV, and operates Germany’s largest streaming platform RTL+, with more than 4.5 million subscribers and a cross-media offer including series, films, music, podcasts and audiobooks. RTL Deutschland owns 15 TV channels, 50 premium magazines, a broad podcast portfolio and numerous digital offerings.