Tag Archives: Acast

Just Sleep Joins The Acast Creator Network

Just Sleep, the popular sleep podcast, has joined the Acast Creator Network.

Being told you have a voice that could send someone to sleep can go one of two ways. For a motivational speaker, it’s not great news – but for podcast host Taesha Glasgow, sending people to sleep is her job.

In 2021, Taesha launched Just Sleep – Bedtime Stores for Adults. Originally as a sleep aid for her husband, the idea was straightforward: Taesha read a short story, recording using a simple microphone and her smooth, calm voice gradually helped her husband fall asleep.

It worked, and Taesha developed the format, recruiting her now well-rested husband to edit the show, and has since released more than 130 episodes that have racked up more than four million downloads.

Just Sleep will be supported by Acast’s range of monetization and growth options – with a focus on sponsorship and direct listener support through Acast+ subscriptions.

Taesha Glasgow, host of Just Sleep, said: “The podcast started as a personal project but has grown dramatically. I get messages almost every day from listeners that struggle with insomnia and the show has become part of their nightly routine. Now working with Acast, we will help even more people around the world fall asleep faster and sleep better.”

Sam Shetabi, Creator Network Director, UK at Acast, said: “We’re seeing a growth in creators developing wellbeing podcasts and sleep aids like Just Sleep, because podcasts are the perfect companion to help calm our busy minds – and Taesha has created the best podcast to help wind down and fall asleep. It’s already a firm favorite at Acast, and we’re looking forward to helping her bring her podcast to new listeners around the world.”

Just Sleep – Bedtime Stories for Adults is now available wherever you get your podcasts, including Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Samsung Free, Google Podcasts, and Amazon Music.

Regional Managing Director, Acast UK & Ireland Named As Josh Woodhouse

Acast, the world’s largest independent podcast company, announced Josh Woodhouse’s appointment as Regional Managing Director of Acast UK & Ireland.

Having been Acting Regional MD since Georgie Holt moved across the business earlier this year to become Regional Managing Director of Acast Americas, Woodhouse – previously UK Director of Sales – now assumes the role full time. Leo Goldingham, previously a UK-based Group Business Director, will now step up to Director of Sales for the UK.

Woodhouse, who has been with Acast for five years, started his career at Bauer Media Group and has also previously worked at Pearl & Dean. Goldingham, who has been with Acast for the same length of time, was previously at Global and Wireless Group and will now lead Acast’s sales team for UK.

Oskar Serrander, Acast’s Chief Operations Officer, said: “The UK is home to some of the biggest podcasters and is one of our best-performing marketplaces globally. Josh has been key to our growth over the past five years, and – after an extensive search for Georgie’s replacement – it became clear to us that the best person to lead Acast forward in the UK was already here.

“Promoting from within is something we strongly believe in, and that’s also why promoting Leo to a leadership role in this priority market also made a lot of sense. Both are well-respected, much-loved members of the UK team – and pillars of the creative, high-achieving and fun culture we’ve worked hard to build.”

Woodhouse said: “It’s safe to say that Acast has been a hugely important part of my life for the past five years, and to formally step into the Managing Director role for the UK and Ireland is a dream come true. It’s a really special place to work, not just for the incredible work we do with our podcasters and advertisers but for the culture we’ve built and sustained, despite our unprecedented growth and the pressures and challenges that can bring to a business.

“I’ve spent the past five years driving Acast’s commercial team in the UK and I can safely say that Leo is the right person to take over in this role as Director of Sales. I can’t wait to see how Leo can take the UK sales team to new heights, delivering market-leading campaigns for our advertisers and helping our creators to make a living from their hard work.”

Goldingham added: “Acast’s mission is to help podcasters make more money – and, as Director of Sales, my priority will be to improve revenue performance so our podcasters can continue to make the great content their listeners love. The UK sales team is exceptional and it’s a great honour to lead them in delivering excellence to advertisers, facilitating a healthy podcast ecosystem that allows our creators to thrive.”

Acast is home to some of the biggest and most iconic podcasts in the UK, including Shagged. Married, Annoyed; The Rest is Politics; My Dad Wrote a Porno; and That Peter Crouch Podcast. Acast also works with publishers such as the Financial Times, the Guardian, The New York Times and The Economists to host and monetize their podcasts in the UK and further afield.

Elsewhere in the UK business, Lorna Byrne and Emma Morrisroe have been promoted to Group Business Directors, after consistent exceptional performance, with team leadership responsibilities overseeing sales, with both media agencies and direct-to-brand clients.

45% Of Podcast Listeners Started Listening To Podcasts In The Past Year

Acast, the world’s largest independent podcast company has unveiled the results of new podcast listener research conducted in collaboration with Nielsen. The study of 2,002 UK and Irish adults who consume podcasts at least monthly found that 45% of listeners started listening to podcasts in the past year, proving that the podcast landscape is rich with opportunities for brands and podcasters to reach new audiences.

According to the findings, there’s also untapped potential in the younger generations – despite typically being a medium associated with Millenial audiences, 53% of 18-34-year-old podcast listeners only starting to do so in the past year. In comparison, 65% of over 55s started listening more than 12 months ago.

More than a third (37%) of respondents said they listen to podcasts every day, while more than two thirds (70%) engage with podcast content more than once a week – but listeners also said they expect to increase their podcast consumption in the next six months.

Almost a third (32%) of those surveyed said they plan to listen to more podcast during this time. That’s higher than the 25% who said they expect to increase the amount of music they stream, and the 27% who plan to spend more time streaming video content.

For advertisers, an engaged and loyal podcast audience is also one more likely to interact with brand messaging they might hear, with 62% of respondents saying they’ve taken direct action following an advert they heard in a podcast.

31% said they considered or purchased the brand/product mentioned. 26% advocated for (read/wrote/discussed positively) it, 24% followed it on social media, and 24% searched for more information.

That makes podcasts an incredibly attractive prospect for any media plan. And the listen-through rate (LTR) from respondents is equally impressive – for episode 30-45 minutes long, 41% of listeners say they listen to either “most” or “about half”, confirming pre-roll and mid-roll ad placements as great ways to reach listeners. For podcasts downloaded to a listener’s personal device, rather than streamed, 71% will listen to “all” or “most” of an episode.

Podcasts are also seen as a trusted source of information – and listeners ranked them much higher in this respect than other media platforms. According to the study, 36% trust what they hear from a podcast host when talking about a brand or company, compared to just 18% for radio.

Crucially for advertisers, podcasts have low levels of advertising fatigue compared to other types of media. The research indicates that just 29% of listeners say there are too many ads on podcasts, compared to 52% who say there are too many on YouTube, and 37% who say there are too many on Radio. Given podcasts have one of the lowest ad loads of all mediums, this provides further opportunities for advertisers to continue to build their campaigns around podcasting – and to have a greater share of voice within individual shows.

Additional key findings reveal that listeners enjoy various aspects of podcasts:

70% of listeners say they enjoy listening to guest interviews

63% of listeners say they enjoy listening to panel discussions

56 % of listeners say they enjoy listening to host banter

News, Music and Comedy content are most frequently consumed, with half of podcast listeners listening to Comedy shows every week.

“Podcasts are an increasingly important part of life and culture for listeners all around the world, and more people are discovering podcasts for the first time every year,” says Leo Goldingham, Director of Sales, UK at Acast. “We trust our favorite podcasters to entertain and inform us – just as much as we trust them to recommend brands and products we’ll enjoy.

“Podcasts have become an integral part of thousands of brands’ marketing strategies but, together with Nielsen, our research shows there are still huge opportunities for advertisers to reach untapped audiences.”

Spring And Acast Partner To Unlock Social e-Commerce For Podcasters

Spring – the industry-defining creator commerce platform – announced a new partnership with Acast, the world’s leading independent podcast company. Under a shared mission of empowering creators to make money from their own work and further engage with their audience, the new partnership allows podcasters to create their own online stores for free – offering bespoke products and merchandise to their fans.

Thousands of Acast’s podcasters can soon use Spring’s 360 commerce solution to create, promote and distribute everything from custom products and clothing to NFTs for their community of listeners. Tapping into a creator’s existing brand and fanbase, merchandise is an organic next step helping podcasters to diversity their revenue streams. As each show is unique, Spring’s extensive fulfillment network – with partners including Peitra and Bondly – allows podcasters to create bespoke products that speak specifically to their community of listeners.

A pilot program featured 11 Acast creators launching a new merchandise line and store via Spring, with participants including Goes Without Saying, Decrypt Daily, Do Go On, The Compound and Friends and other popular podcasters. Throughout the program, participants had access to Spring’s custom analytics dashboards, educational resources, and premium support channels – as well as Spring’s renowned digital products and Mint-on-Demand NFT capabilities, allowing creators to submerge themselves into Web3.

Since April, the Acast X Spring pilot has driven close to 1,000 combined product sales.

“Using Spring to create our first-ever podcast merch has been amazing. It is so user-friendly and incredibly intuitive,” say Sephy and Wing, hosts of Goes Without Saying. “The Acast x Spring partnership has helped us feel so much more confident and supported in the process of creating our merch – from designing to marketing.”

Ultimately acting as an intersection for podcasters and Spring merchandise, the trial demonstrated the potential for heightened traffic and conversion rates. Following the pilot program, Acast and Spring will build out additional functionality to enhance the creator experience across both platforms and create more opportunities for podcasters to monetize their audience.

On the new partnership, Spring COO Annelies Jansen says, “We are looking forward to commencing the program with Acast and are thrilled to have already noted such keen interest from Acast creators wanting to take part. Through this pilot, Spring will be able to track and measure creator behavior to ultimately develop partnership which will enhance creator success in the long-run. Most importantly, by working with Acast on ways to improve creator accessibilities, Spring continues to make sure the power remains in the hands of the creator at all times.”

Simon Marcus, VP of Strategy at Acast adds: “Acast’s mission is to help more podcasters make more money in more ways, by strengthening the connections between creators and their fans. Through our partnership with Spring, we’re enabling podcasters to expand their revenue base to include custom merch and creative products – putting the creator’s brand front and center. Spring shares our vision for creator success, and we look forward to seeing what our creators come up with.”

Spring’s industry-first social integrations with platforms including Instagram, Twitch, YouTube, TikTok and Linktree enable creators to fuel fandom and revenue streams exponentially. The success of platform integrations resulted in explosive growth for Spring, with more than 9 million creators having signed up to the platform to build their socially integrated commerce stores as of January 2022. Currently, Spring has an average of 2,500 creators sign up to the platform every day, in efforts to diversify their revenue streams and drive community engagement.

Podcast Giant Marc Maron Joins Acast

Acast, the world’s leading independent podcast platform has entered into a three-year partnership with podcast creator Marc Maron and his podcast WTF with Marc Maron. The partnership will now be hosted, monetized and distributed via Acast, and will also be making use of the platform’s paid memberships offering, Acast+. Maron’s podcast has approximately 55 million listens per year, primarily in North America.

Maron has, since the podcast started in 2009, become a phenomenon in the podcasting world and over the years has interviewed personalities including President Barack Obama, Kate Winslet, Keith Richards, Nicole Kidman, Stacey Abrams and Robin Williams – the latter episode being inducted into America’s National Recording Registry earlier this year. Shortly after Maron launched his podcast, it established itself as one of the world’s largest and most popular shows.

This partnership means that Acast will be the exclusive host and sales partner for the podcast, its full back catalog and other related materials. WTF with Marc Maron will continue to be released twice a week and will be available to all listeners, wherever they choose to listen to their podcasts. The agreement will come into effect from July 1, 2022.

WTF with Marc Maron will also be utilizing Acast+, giving the podcast additional monetization options including Maron’s back catalog and brand new bonus content for Maron’s paying members – without restricting them to listen to their paid-for content on a specific podcast player. In addition, Acast will offer advertisers the opportunity to promote their brand to Maron’s million of listeners through both dynamic and in-episode sponsorships, plus much more.

“Entering into a partnership with the podcast giant Marc Maron is a big win for Acast and for the open podcasting landscape, as this deal guarantees that the podcast can continue to be listened to by everyone, everywhere and on their preferred listening platform. In addition to WTF with Marc Maron being one of the largest podcasts in the world, Maron is also one of the very best hosts in the business. This collaboration presents a real step forward for us in the North American market, adding millions of listens and strengthening our brand even further in the region. At the same time we will also be working with the show to increase the number of Marc Maron fans across the globe,” said Ross Adams, CEO of Acast.

“We’ve amassed an amazing catalog over the years and Acast offers us an opportunity to make it available in a way that hasn’t always been before, especially in international markets. We’ve released two episodes every week for almost 13 years and we don’t plan on stopping any time soon. Acast won’t stand in the way of us doing the show the way we want to do it, the way we like doing it, they way we’ve always done it. They’re excited and focused and I think the partnership will be very productive,” said Marc Maron, host of WTF with Mark Maron.

“We take great pride in maintaining the high quality and universal accessibility of WTF, and we know we are in very safe hands with Acast. We will be utilizing both their expertise and innovative technologies, such as Acast+, to ensure our podcast stays ahead of the game. We look forward to sharing more and more great content with our listeners,” said WTF with Marc Maron co-creator and producer Brendan McDonald.

The deal was negotiated by Avalon who represents WTF with Marc Maron and Marc Maron.

Acast Appoints Jenny Rahm As Managing Director For The Nordics

Acast, the world’s leading independent podcast company, announces the appointment of Jenny Rham as Managing Director for the Nordics. Rahm will oversee commercial sales and podcast acquisition and retention, as Acast continues to grow its market share within the Nordics and retains its leading position in Sweden.

With a strong background in media sales and a deep understanding of engaging content, Rahm will be fundamental in further increasing revenues for Acast within the Nordics. Prior to joining Acast, Rahm held the role of Chief Commercial Officer at Life of Svea, where she was responsible for all commercial revenues with focus on its business development and profitability. She also holds many years of experience as Sales Manager within Bonnier.

According to projections by IRM, podcast ad revenue in Sweden is expected to increase by 40% and reach an amount of 400 million SEK in 2022, making podcasts the highest growth media of all categories.

Oskar Serrander, Chief Operating Officer at Acast, said: “Jenny has a long, impressive track record in the media industry both from a commercial side and in close work with the creative. Not only does she have the know-how skills, perhaps most importantly she has the leadership values and philosophy that will be instrumental for nurturing the Acast culture we are so proud of.

“The podcasting opportunity in the Nordics is a fantastic one and, as the Nordic leader, we want to ensure we have the best leadership to continue to keep Acast innovating – as well as being the best home for both our established podcasts and new shows. I’d also like to take this opportunity to thank Fredrik Hermansson for playing a key role in our Acast growth story of the past eight years, and we wish him all the best in his new role.

In her new role, Rahm will also be responsible for the welfare of close to 50 Acast employees based in Sweden, Norway, Denmark, and Finland.

Jenny Rahm, Managing Director, Nordics at Acast, said: “I’m impressed by Acast’s growth journey, their future plans, and also their excellent culture – both in terms of employees and creators. The podcast medium as an advertising platform shows a continued exponential increase in most markets, with enormous potential. Managing Director for the Nordic region will be a challenge, but at the same time a fun role that I look forward, with the greatest confidence, of taking on.

Rahm will work out of the Stockholm office.

Acast Promotes Jack Preston To Global Head Of Acast Creative

Acast, the world’s leading independent podcast company, has further invested in its Acast Creative team – and its belief in the power of creativity in podcast advertising – by promoting Jack Preston to Global Head of Acast Creative. Acast Creative is Acast’s in-house creative ad solutions team and a pillar of the Acast Marketplace, helping brands navigate the rapidly evolving podcast landscape and elevate commercial messaging to its greatest potential.

Acast first launched Acast Creative for its European markets in 2019, before expanding globally regions including the US.

Led by Preston, Acast Creative also held its first global Sounds Creative event in April, guiding and educating brands on creative best practice in podcast advertising. The event followed the publication of new research from Acast Creative looking at the impact and importance of ads specifically created for podcasts, versus those re-used from other media channels.

In his new role, Jack will continue to develop Acast’s relationships with both the clients and creators, continuing to introduce innovative new ad formats into the medium and redefining the notion of what a podcast ad campaign can be.

He’ll also work closely with Acast’s talented group of regional creative directors, developing strategies tailored to each market and each client they work with.

Preston added: “When we enter into a partnership with a brand and a creator, we don’t just want people to hear the campaign – we want them to be truly listening, watching, and experiencing them everywhere.

“A podcast can now be so much more than something you just listen to, so while all our campaigns will continue to have audio and storytelling at their heart, we want to work with creators and brands on bigger, more ambitious executions that take place across multiple platforms.”

With podcast advertising on the rise – eMarketer projects the podcast advertising industry will surpass $3bn in value by 2026 – the Acast Creative team is at the vanguard, delivering brilliant brand stories through both short- and long-form content. Acast Creative gives advertisers the most value from their campaign and a more creative, tailored experience for listeners – ensuring they’re tuned into the brand offering.

Preston has more than a decade’s experience creating multichannel campaigns for brands, and since joining Acast has led an overhaul of its advertising offering for clients – helping move the business from ads and sponsorship alone to a greater focus in branded content and 360 partnerships. Before joining Acast, Preston led content and social strategy at Virgin.

Acast Releases Australian 2022 Sounds Smart Report

Acast, the world’s leading independent podcast company, has released the 2022 edition of its annual Sounds Smart Report. The report is Australia’s largest body of podcast-specific research, undertaken with the aim of uncovering why people are listening to podcasts, how and when they’re listening, and the impact podcast advertising is having for brands.

Acast commissioned Nielson to survey 2,000 Australians aged 18+ who listen to podcasts at least once a month. The research focused on three key areas: consumption, engagement, and receptivity.

The findings reveal:

39% of podcast listeners have increased their listening in the last six months and 30% plan to increase their consumption in the next six months.

Podcasting is one of the most immersive environments and a medium that genuinely captures attention. 60% said they are immersed/focused when listening to podcasts. Other audio channels, music streaming and commercial radio, sit at 33% and 22% respectively.

30% of respondents considered buying or made purchases of a brand or product after hearing ads on podcasts compared to an equal 23% for both commercial radio and music streaming.

Henrik Isaksson, Managing Director, Acast Australia and New Zealand said: “In 2021 Acast released the largest body of podcast specific research, with the aim of giving podcasting a voice in Australian media. Since then, podcasts have become even more popular amongst listeners and advertisers alike.”

“Utilizing Nielsen Media analytics for the 2022 Acast Sounds Smart Report has allowed us to gain deeper insight into the Australian audio landscape as it stands today and has further cemented podcasting’s position as a key media channel – one with its own unique attributes versus other audio channels. Podcasting is not just another media channel, it’s one in which advertisers can reach some of the most engaged and immersed audiences around.”

Acast Appoints The Park as Creative Partner for The Podcast Show 2022

Acast, the world’s leading independent podcast company, announced it has selected award-winning experiential agency The Park as its creative partner for the upcoming London Podcast Show 2022 in London. The partnership follows a four-way competitive pitch and will see The Park leading on creative development and event production at the new podcast festival.

As an official partner of The Podcast Show 2022, Acast will welcome industry professionals, podcast creators and listeners to learn more about how they can monetize and grow their podcasts through its word-class tools and services. Attendees will be treated to lively talks – including a keynote from CEO Ross Adams – and interactive experiences on the event floor featuring high-profile Acast podcasters, handled by The Park.

Nick Harnett, Acast, PR and Marketing Manager for the UK and Ireland, said:

“The Podcast Show 2022 promises to be an assume moment for anyone interested in UK podcasting, and – thanks to The Park’s proven event production expertise – we’re looking forward to helping creators, podcasting professionals and listeners learn more about Acast and what we can do for them, plus meet some of our brilliant podcasters, of course.”

“The Podcast Show 2022 promises to be an awesome moment for anyone interested in UK podcasting, and – thanks to The Park’s proven event production expertise – we’re looking forward to helping creators, podcasting professionals and listeners learn more about Acast and what we can do for them, plus meet some of our brilliant podcasters, of course.”

Lloyd Major, Co-Founder and Global Production Director, The Park said:

“We’re really proud to be partnering with Acast at the inaugural podcast show in the UK. It feel like a perfect collaboration and we look forward to bringing our creative and production vision to life and creating a great experience for everyone that visits our space, celebrating Acast as the home of podcasting.”