Industry News

Nielsen to Market Edison Research Studies to Ad Agencies

Nielsen says that it will begin marketing Edison Research’s Share of Ear and Edison Podcast Metrics services to advertising agencies. Nielsen says, “Edison’s Share of Ear is a highly regarded and widely cited service that provides deep insights about the complete audio landscape, including broadcast radio, streaming,Logo - Nielsen Holdings podcasting, downloaded audio, smart speakers and other sources of audio content… Edison Podcast Metrics measures persons-based listening estimates using frequently updated surveys to provide a complete view of the rapidly growing podcast audience.” Jon Kaiser is head of Nielsen’s agency and advertiser-direct businesses and he says, “The media landscape is evolving quickly and agencies have a vital need to understand how all the media puzzle pieces fit together. Edison’s insights are best-in-class and Nielsen is excited to work together with them to provide media planners and buyers with deep insights into the total audio landscape and the rapidly growing podcasting audience.”

Industry Views

How Hot Is Podcasting?

By Holland Cooke
Consultant

How hot is podcasting? The topic dominated a CES session billed in broader terms: “The Disruption: Media, Platforms & Advertising.” Panelists – executives from social media, major content brands, and radio mega-groups – also discussed “linear” (live) programming and streaming video. But all kept coming back to podcasting, which iHeartMedia CMO Gayle Troberman characterized as “exploding, driving massive growth in audio.”

Not unexpected, since her company is a major player. But, from the other side of the equation, World Wrestling Entertainment SVP Craig Stimmel acknowledges that, post-pandemic, “habits have changed as to where to go” for media; so “we want to make sure our content is everywhere.” His stars are among celebrities whom podcasting connects with fans in what Troberman describes as “live, human, unscripted conversation with people you come to know;” particularly welcome post-pandemic-shutdown. “The more isolated and alone people feel, the more audio delivers intimacy.”

It’s not a radio show

Every panelist spoke of “authenticity,” rather than the slick, polished texture of traditional AM/FM programming. SXM Media SVP Lizzie Widhelm challenges broadcasters: “How can we let go of our playbook, and walk away from norms that have been comfy-cozy?”

“More creators coming into audio than ever before” from politics, sports, and other walks of life, “to engage more deeply.” Audacy CMO Paul Suchman says that delivers advertisers “super-relevant, contextually relevant” places to tell their stories. So “this is a medium that deserves GREAT creative,” not just audio of a TV spot. “Advertising that gets ‘inserted’” doesn’t work as well as “the deep human connection” of podcaster’s very personal delivery. Thus “the lowest ad-skipping rates of any media.”

Podcasting plusses

Just as music streams offer lots more variety than safe-list FMs, spoken-word podcasting is a topical cornucopia compared to talk radio’s largely political fare.

And panelists ticked-off other advantages podcasts offer advertisers:

  • “Quicker and much less-expensive production than video.”
  • “Lower CPM” ad rates, increasingly attractive as recession likely looms.
  • “Really young, and diverse audiences coming into audio in a big way.”
  • “The audiences you’re not getting on TV anymore.”

“Voice has always been how humans communicate”

Troberman describes the iHeart app Talkback feature, which listeners use to send messages stations play, a tool some of my client stations have built-into their apps.

And this interactivity isn’t just a media thing. Audacy’s Suchman mentioned how drivers now converse with Cadillac’s state-of-the-art dashboard: “The next phase of computing will be voice-driven.” Yet – accustomed as we have become to dealing with supermarket self-checkout and other robots almost everywhere – the “intimacy,” “authenticity,” and “diversity” panelists speak of suggest that, as iHeart’s Troberman reckons, “the future of voice is the future of two-way communication via audio.”

Help yourself!

I’ve been reporting from CES all this week for TALKERS…and for you. You can download five 60-second radio reports at HollandCooke.com.

Holland Cooke (HollandCooke.com) is the author of “Multiply Your Podcast Subscribers, Without Buying Clicks,” available from Talkers books; and “Spot-On: Commercial Copy Points That Earned The Benjamins,” a FREE download; and the E-book and FREE on-air radio features Inflation Hacks: Save Those Benjamins.” HC is a consultant working at the intersection of broadcasting and the Internet. Follow him on Twitter @HollandCooke

Industry News

LiveOne Slashes $5 Million in Costs; Plans to Spin Out PodcastOne

Digital content platform LiveOne announces that “as part of its focus on generating cash from operations on a consolidated basis, (it) is implementing additional cost and expense reductions from both operations and corporate overhead, which is anticipated to increase the previously implemented annual cost savings to a total of over $30 million in its fiscal year ending March 31, 2023.  On December 29, 2022, the company revealed that Courtside Group, Inc. (dba PodcastOne) has filed an S-1 with the SEC for its planned spin-out and special dividend to LiveOne’s stockholders of record on January 16, 2023. The company says that PodcastOne is expected to record revenue of $25 million for the first nine months of fiscal 2023 ending December 31, 2022.

LiveOne adds, “PodcastOne’s proprietary internal Content Management System allows creators and producers to track metrics about shows on an episode-by-episode basis.  CMS is the platform where podcast episodes are uploaded, RSS feeds are created and distributed to listening platforms, and the listening data is analyzed and displayed in a dashboard for the creators/producers to see. This fully owned and operated enterprise CMS rivals other paid platforms such as Megaphone (Spotify-owned), Art19 (Amazon-owned) and SimpleCast (SiriusXM/Pandora-owned). The CMS’ day-to-day operation and maintenance is managed by a vendor we contract with and is constantly being updated to be a best-in-class system. LiveOne remains committed to spinning-out PodcastOne as a separate public company to be listed on a national exchange. In connection with such spin-out, LiveOne has moved the record date to Jan. 16, 2023 for PodcastOne’s special dividend to LiveOne’s stockholders of record. In addition, LiveOne intends to explore spinning-out SlackerOne as a separate public company during its 2024 fiscal year.”