Spotify announced that the company has entered into a definitive agreement to acquire Megaphone, one of the world’s most innovative podcast advertising and publishing platform. Together, Spotify and Megaphone will help advertisers and podcast publishers realize the full potential of podcasts. The two companies will achieve this through the power of Megaphone Targeted Marketplace and by making Streaming Ad Insertion available to third-party podcast publishers for the first time.
With this acquisition, Spotify continues to deliver against its goal to become the world’s leading audio platform and focus on growing audio monetization across the industry. The acquisition follows Spotify’s launch of Streaming Ad Insertion, an innovative podcast ad technology that delivers the intimacy and quality of traditional podcast ads with the precision and transparency of modern day digital marketing.
Advertisers will now be able to activate across Spotify’s Original & Exclusive podcasts while scaling reach through the Megaphone Targeted Marketplace. For podcast publishers, the acquisition will unlock innovative tools that will help them earn more from their work. This includes the opportunity to opt-in to have their content monetized, matching their listeners with even greater demand from advertisers.
Following transaction close, Spotify will soon make Streaming Ad insertion available to all podcast publishers on Megaphone, the first time this technology will be made available to third parties. With Streaming Ad Insertion, podcast publishers will be able to offer more valuable podcast audiences to advertisers based on confirmed ad impressions.
“We are still in the early chapters of the streaming and audio industry story, but it is absolutely clear that the potential is significant,” said Dawn Ostroff, Chief Content & Advertising Business Officer, Spotify. “We look forward to Megaphone joining Spotify on our mission to accelerate smarter podcast monetization for advertisers and podcast publishers powered by a scaled audience and state-of-the-art technology.”
“We are incredibly excited to join Spotify to help advance the podcast medium for publishers and advertisers alike,” said Brendan Monaghan, CEO, Megaphone. “We believe that Megaphone and Spotify’s shared value in innovation will drive the podcast ecosystem forward around the world.”
Megaphone announced the one-year anniversary of Megaphone Studio on October 23, 2020. Serving upwards of 50 brands at any given time and leveraging tools including a fully remote audio production setup, a curated roster of podcast voiceover talent, ad effectiveness testing for audio creative, Megaphone Studios is regarded as a hub of creativity and innovation capable of handling the volume and myriad needs of the most diverse cross-industry client base in the business.
Megaphone Studio’s one-year anniversary arrives as a promising juncture for Megaphone and the podcasting space overall. Podcast listenership is up across every metric and category, brining unprecedented interest from advertisers and media companies alike.
Within Megaphone ecosystems, monthly downloads have surged to a record 827M for the month of September. Underlying this growth is the uniquely intimate and effective medium of the podcast ad, where formats and best-practices continue to evolve as new channels and data signals emerge.
Megaphone studios was created as a center of creative excellence to push this evolution forward, by evangelizing the value of the podcast medium and its definitive creative best practices in advertising, and by maximizing that effectiveness by drawing upon the best available technology, analytics, and measurement tools – all while preserving the unique intimacy of the listening experience.
Megaphone Studio is perfectly positioned for the growth we’re seeing in the podcast medium, by focusing on the marriage of best-in-class creative and the most sophisticated technology the industry has to offer,” said George Gehring, Senior Director of Creative Solutions at Megaphone. “Podcast audiences are the most passionate and leaned-in audiences in the mix. We create ads that emulate podcasts and therefore resonate with these audiences. Megaphone Studio’s vision is to create a team and an environment dedicated to these highly engaged audiences, delivering them the best audio ad experience while preserving the magic of the podcast medium. Through creative experimentation and innovation, and by leveraging data and analytics from creative testing, we’re able to validate the work we do and ensure that the entire industry benefits from our findings.”
Megaphone announced the appointment of David Cohn as Head of Sales. Cohn joins the leadership team with a focus on driving Megaphone’s unique landscape and boosting digital and integrated sales strategies.
“David has a fantastic track record not only for digital and integrated advertising sales, but also building and keeping relationships with agencies, brands, and sellers,” said Brendan Monaghan, CEO of Megaphone. “He’s a huge asset and will look to guide our sales team in big moves in the New Year.”
Cohn has been in the media business for more than 20 years, with 18an experience in digital. His career started with Paid Programming, then TV Spot Sales which ultimately evolved to integrated and digital. Most recently, Cohn held the title of Senior Director of National Sales with WarnerMedia where his accounts exceeded $20mm.
“I am thrilled to be joining the Megaphone team,” said Cohen. “This team has created such an innovative product for serious podcasters and advertisers, I hope to bring to the table deeper cross strategies for growth and podcast monetization.”
Cohn is a graduate of the University of Wisconsin and currently resides in Westchester NY, with his wife of 20 years, Nicole, and three children.
Megaphone is a US-based podcast technology company that provides hosting and ad-insertion capabilities for publishers and targeted ad sales for brand partners.