Category Archives: Podcast News

Spotify Improved Podcast Charts

Spotify unveiled some big improvements to Spotify’s podcast charts experience, which will benefit podcasters in a number of ways. More chances for all creators to chart – and a new way for listeners to discover new favorites on Spotify.

With more people than ever podcasting all over the world, we want to ensure that podcast charts are growing with you. We also want you to be able to celebrate your success – which is why we’re excited to unveil a revamped podcast – charts experience that’s better in every way: more chances for up-and-coming creators and established creators to make it onto a chart; more ways to view a chart than just heading to the Spotify app; and a higher likelihood of listeners discovering you and your context.

New: Top Episodes

For the first time, Spotify’s charts look beyond overall podcast show numbers on Spotify and dive into individual episodes. Updated daily, the Top Episodes chart will provide a better understanding of what’s really being listened to on Spotify – because a podcast isn’t always the sum of its episodes. Sometimes, for example, a single episode may strike a chord with listeners of become part of the audio-content zeitgeist.

There’s now something to show for episodes that are really popular or trending, even if their podcast as a whole isn’t being consumed at the same volume. It’s also another way for listeners to discover your show, and potentially explore past episodes or follow your show to hear what you come out with next.

New: Charts Website

Starting yesterday, Spotify is freeing charts from the confines of the app and giving them their standalone due, with their own website. (At launch, the charts website will only reflect U.S. charts). Not only will this provide everyone easier access to the daily podcast pulse on Spotify, but it’ll also serve as a larger destination for discoverability.

With a full charts website, creators everywhere will be able to share their success with listeners, family, and friends – or organically get discovered by a listener perusing the site and stumbling upon your show. Anyone will be able to preview a podcast and follow it directly from the charts site.

Improved: Top Podcasts

Spotify improved their Top Podcast chart by devising a new methodology that helps listeners find what they’re really looking for: the intersection of popular and emerging. Now, the amount of podcast followers on Spotify factors into the algorithm and definition of what comprises a ‘top’ podcast, coupled with recent unique Spotify listener numbers. These changes mean the chart is better able to react to new shows, fresh voices, and fast risers, while giving listeners more reason to check in frequently to discover new shows.

Audioboom Announced Strategic Partnership with MAPP Media

Audioboom announced a strategic partnership with MAPP Media to expand podcast monetization in the UK. MAPP Media will monetize Audioboom’s impression-based inventory, delivering new value through scaled Dynamic Ad Insertion opportunities to a portfolio of more than 8,000 podcasts.

Audioboom’s podcasts are downloaded more than 12 million times each month in the UK, and the network publishes some of the UK’s biggest podcasts, including No Such Thing As A Fish, F1: Beyond The Grid, The Cycling Podcast, and Wafflin’.

MAPP Media’s sales platform will deliver revenue through a second window sales model, while Audioboom’s in-house team will continue to focus on the premium model of high engagement, embedded, host reads. The combined strategy will optimize advertising revenue and create maximum value for Audioboom’s original podcasts and production partners.

“Audioboom is the market-leader in premium podcast advertising, and now through our partnership with MAAP Media we can deliver even more value to our podcasters in the UK,” says Stuart Last, Audioboom CEO. “MAPP’s ability to generate scalable revenue will drive value to creators of all sizes, as well as optimizing our rich archives.”

The partnership with MAPP Media will enable Audioboom to further expand its roster of UK based podcasts by providing more robust revenue opportunities to independent producers and key talent.

“With our long running experience in the audio space, Mapp are excited to bring this new opportunity to the forefront of our offering, connecting up the world’s leading brands with some of the biggest podcasts in the UK” says Nathan Warner, MAPP Media Managing Director.

The New York Times Fourth Annual Student Podcast Contest

The New York Times announced its Fourth Annual Student Podcast Contest. The Contest opened on April 8, 2021, and will accept submissions through May 18, 2021.

In our Fourth Annual Podcast Contest, we invite teenagers to submit original podcasts of five minutes or less. Your creation can be about anything that interests you, in any form that you like. Our favorites will be featured on The Learning Network.

Students ages 11 to 19 anywhere in the world attending middle or high school can participate. If you can answer YES to either of these two questions, then you can use the Student Submission form:

Are you a middle or high school student residing in the United States or the United Kingdom who is 13 to 19 years old?

Are you a middle or high school student residing in any country outside the United States or the United Kingdom who is 16 to 19 years old?

If you are a middle or high school student who answers “no” to both of those questions, then please ask an adult to submit on your behalf. Adults can use an individual submission form if they are submitting on behalf of one student. An adult who is submitting entries on behalf of more than one student can use the bulk submission form. The adults can be either a teacher or a parent.

Rules include:

Create a podcast that produces a complete listening experience with a clear beginning, middle, and ending.

Beginnings often draw the listener in or provide context. Endings often provide a summary, ask a question or tease the next segment.

You can use any podcast format or genre.

Popular podcast formats include interviews, conversations, nonfiction storytelling and fiction storytelling. Popular genres include comedy, true crime, news documentary, history, radio, theater, and sports. But you can choose from unlimited format and genre.

Podcasts must be five minutes or less.

Please check the length of your audio file. (Just to be very clear, 5:01 is longer than five minutes.)

Your podcast must be original for this contest.

We want students to be inspired by our contests and have an opportunity to reach a wider audience for their work. If you have already published a piece, then come up with something else to submit.

Use appropriate language.

Assume your listeners are New York Times readers. No explicit language, please.

To see the full list of rules, and all the details that go with them, please visit the New York Times website that is about their Fourth Annual Student Podcast Contest. Their post includes resources for teachers and students.

Gimlet Media and The Ringer Ratify First Podcast Contracts at Spotify

Writers Guild of America, East announced that the writers and producers at Gimlet Media and The Ringer, two of the first podcast production companies to unionize with the Writers Guild of America, East (WGAE), both ratified first collective bargaining agreements. Gimlet Media and The Ringer are owned by Spotify.

The Guild negotiated both three-year agreements concurrently, and the contracts were unanimously ratified by the 48 bargaining unit members at Gimlet Media and 65 bargaining unit members at The Ringer.

Both of the groundbreaking union contracts include:

  • Significant increases to salary minimums, with The Ringer establishing $57,000 plus overtime as an entry-level floor, and Gimlet Media beginning at $73,000 for Associate Producers.
  • Establishment of new senior titles.
  • Limitations on the use of contractors within bargaining unit positions. Contractors must either be offered a full-time job after 10 months, or the companies must inform them 30 days in advance that there will not be a position available for them.
  • Minimum of 2% guaranteed annual increases.
  • Minimum severance of 11 weeks for all employees, regardless of tenure.
  • Spotify benefits, with no change in benefits for the duration of the contract.
  • Editorial standards that guarantee that the company will not modify or fail to publish content based on the direction of advertisers, and that bargaining unit employees will not be required to work on advertising and branded content.
  • Funding for Diversity Committees, with representatives from both management and the bargaining unit.
  • Language guaranteeing that 50% of candidates for open unit positions who make it to the stage after the phone interview will be from traditionally under-represented groups (BIPOC, LGBTQ+, people with disabilities, military veterans).
  • Elimination of post-employment non-compete agreements for all employees who make under $155,000, and removal of post-employment non-competes in individual agreements.
  • Formation of a Labor Management Committee.
  • Just cause and union security.

Lowell Peterson, Executive Director of the Writers Guild of America, East, said, “The collective bargaining agreements at Gimlet Media and The Ringer demonstrate that the people who make podcasts, from writers to producers to editors, bring enormous value to the major platforms for whom they create content. Collective bargaining ensures creative professionals have a seat at the table to address issues like inclusion and equity, intellectual property concerns, and sustainability of careers.”

Podcast Business Journal to Host 3-Day Conference

Podcast Business Journal announced that they are partnering with their sister publication Radio Ink Magazine for a 3-day virtual podcasting conference with one goal in mind… to help you establish a podcasting strategy that’s worth your time and generates new revenue.

The event is July 13th, 14th, and 15th from 11AM to 2PM. The full agenda of all-star podcasters has been posted.

The virtual conference will NOT be a zoom screen with 5 people speaking over each other.

Podcast Business Journal’s virtual conference will be rapid fire one-on-one interviews with podcasters who ARE making money and companies making money from podcasting.

It will also include an entire day (day one) on the basics. Hosting, editing, equipment, how to launch, when to launch, where to launch.

You’ve trusted us for 30 years to bring you great sales, management and marketing ideas that help you to sell more advertising and grow your radio station bottom line. Trust us now to help you create a successful podcasting strategy.

Receive updates on Podcast Business Journal’s July show by subscribing HERE. Basics Day (July 13) includes the Basics: hosting, equipment, editing, artwork, how to launch, where to launch, SEO for your show, and much more. The single day ticket costs $99. The full event 3-Day ticket cost $249. It includes The Money: rapid-fire interviews with successful money-making podcasters.

You will find a list of Speakers on the website where you can register for the Podcast Business Journal 3-Day conference.

StreamYard has a Live Stream Success Summit

StreamYard will be holding a Live Stream Success Summit. It will be their first-ever, and will be held on April 15, 2021. Those who are interested need to obtain a ticket through the Live Stream Success Summit page on hopin. The event is free.

You’ll hear from the world’s top live streamers and StreamYard users on topics like:

  • How to get started with streaming
  • Proven advice to take your streaming to the next level
  • Ways to connect with your audience
  • StreamYard pro tips
  • Tactical deep dives to make 2021 your most successful streaming year yet.

Their keynote speakers include renowned live streamers:

  • Seth Godin (best-selling author and marketing expert) will teach you how to find your voice and connect with your live audience.
  • Geige Vandentop and Dan Bridges (Streamyard’s founders) will reveal exclusive new StreamYard features to enhance your live streams.
  • Amy Landino (Creator of the award-winning YouTube series AmyTV) will show you how to use the power of video to take your streams to the next level.
  • Leticia Campbell (Founder, CEO Campbell Success Network) will help guide you through the event so you get the most out of your time.

A schedule of the event has been posted, as well as a list of Speakers.

Podfriend to Help Podcasters Monetize their Content Using Bitcoin

Podfriend, a new contender on the Podcast App scene, has announced the release of a new series of features allowing listeners to support their favorite podcasts by streaming value to them while listening.

“I’m happy to announce Podfriend supporting the Podcasting 2.0 Value for Value standard,” Martin Mouritzen, creator of Podfriend enthusiastically explains. “This range of features has been made possible by using the Bitcoin on Lightning protocol and is really ideal for micropayments.”

Users of Podfriend can now stream micropayments to Podcasters while listening. Listeners can even show their enthusiasm for particular segments of a podcast by using the “Boost” button to send larger micropayments.

“I’m excited to be a trailblazer along with the other Podcasting 2.0 enabled podcast players,” Martin says, before concluding, “I truly believe that this is the first step on the way to a world where micropayments are a real and better alternative to ads.”

Podfriend is a podcast player created by Martin Mouritzen, whose mission in life is to be “The friendliest podcast player in the world.”

Podfriend is available on web and Desktop and is in beta on iOS and Android, and is among the most Podcasting 2.0. feature complete applications, supporting new features like: Transcripts (& Subtitles), Chapters, Funding, Location and Person.

4th Annual Canadian Podcast Awards Open for Nominations

Nominations are now open for the fourth annual Canadian Podcast Awards; the only award show for outstanding podcasts produced by Canadian podcasters, editors, and producers.

“We are once again excited to bring attention to the ever growing podcasting industry we have here in Canada with the fourth installment of the Canadian Podcast Awards. We love having the opportunity to focus on amplifying Canadian voices and their unique artistry within a community of their peers.” John Leschinski, Chair of Podcamp Toronto.

31 categories are open to nominations including Outstanding News & Current Affairs series, Outstanding Society & Culture series, Outstanding Documentary series, and People’s Choice. Entries are free and open to podcasters from across the country who meet the eligibility criteria. Nominations close April 30, 2021.

Awards will be adjudicated by Canadian podcasters registered with the awards website between May 3 and May 28, 2021. Winners will be announced online in June, 2021 and will receive a 1-year license for Hindenburg Journalist Pro courtesy of Hindenburg.

One-hundred and sixteen podcasts were nominated for awards in 2020. Winners included The Gravy Train, Dark Poutine, Diabetes Canada Podcast, and On a Dark Cold Night.

“Being recognized for a Canadian Podcast Award comes with a sense of pride that your peers, the community you lookup to, feel that you deserve to be here for the work you do.” Said Lauren Marinigh of Somebody Date Us, winner of Best Adult Podcast, 2020. “To now walk away with a win hits on such a deep level and there’s nothing more definitive than that.”

For Canadian Podcast Awards nomination submission guidelines, check their website.

Liberated Syndication Announced Agreement to Acquire AdvertiseCast

Liberated Syndication Inc. (Libsyn) announced it has entered into a definitive agreement to acquire AdvertiseCast LLC, one of the largest independent and fastest-growing podcast advertising companies. The combination of Libsyn’s 75,000 podcasts and AdvertiseCast’s premier advertising capabilities will accelerate revenue opportunities for podcast creators and provide advertisers with significant new inventory. The acquisition will position Libsyn to be the leading platform for both hosting and monetization.

“I am thrilled to announce this acquisition. AdvertiseCast is a market leader in the podcast advertising space that will fit perfectly with our existing Libsyn 5 hosting platform. Since we began in 2004, our primary objective at Libsyn has been to enable independent podcasters by providing them with a strong set of tools to help them thrive,” said Libsyn President Laurie Sims. “AdvertiseCast expands our tool set to include a robust monetization solution that enables efficient host-read and programmatic advertising. We expect to generate meaningful revenue by offering the AdvertiseCast solution to Libsyn’s customers and leveraging the combined inventory to attract even more advertisers to the AdvertiseCast platform.”

Founded in 2016, AdvertiseCast’s self-serve marketplace enables podcast advertising for over 1,500 active mid- and large-tier podcasters currently on its network and allows advertisers and agencies to efficiently buy and manage advertising campaigns in the podcast sector. Since inception, AdvertiseCast revenue has grown rapidly, increasing 45% year over year in 2020 to approximately $12 million. AdvertiseCast has scaled profitably since inception with no outside investment.

AdvertiseCast Co-Founders Trevr Smithlin and Dave Hanley commented, “We founded AdvertiseCast with a podcast publisher’s mindset and believe it is a perfect fit with Libsyn’s creator-centric ethos. Given the large growth in the podcasting market, we felt this was the perfect time to join forces with Libsyn in order to accelerate the growth of our business. As a leader in the podcast hosting space, Libsyn has a world-class podcast hosting platform that will deliver meaningful inventory to our podcast advertisers. Advertising is still a very under-penetrated segment of the podcast market, and we believe we are strongly positioned to ride the advertising wave with Libsyn’s support.”

Under the terms of the purchase agreement, Libsyn will acquire all of the issued and outstanding membership interests of AdvertiseCast in consideration for a purchase price of up to $30 million, of which $18 million will be in cash, $10 million will be in newly issued Libsyn shares, and $2 million will be in the form of an earn-out, which is subject to the terms and conditions of the purchase agreement. Co-Founders Trevr Smithlin and Dave Hanley will remain with the company and enter into employment agreements as a condition to closing. The acquisition’s closing is subject to other customary closing conditions.

Libsyn is also pleased to announce it has received funding commitments of $25 million through a privately placed equity transaction (“PIPE”) in Libsyn. The financing will be led by existing shareholder Camac Partners, LLC and new shareholder Hudson Executive Capital LP, among other existing and new investors. Proceeds of the PIPE will be used primarily to fund the AdvertiseCast acquisition and to provide Libsyn with additional capital for other strategic acquisitions. The closing of the PIPE is subject to customary closing conditions and is expected to occur concurrent with the closing of the AdvertiseCast acquisition in Q2 2021.