Podcast News for May – Week 2

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Want to know what’s going on in the industry last week? Check out 10 podcasting news that highlights the industry’s ever-evolving landscape.

  1. First-ever Podfest Asia

Founder of Seven Million Bikes Podcasts, Niall Mackay, was the first ever speaker at the first-ever Podfest Asia this week in Manila, Philippines. 

Featuring speakers from across the globe including Jim Cirillo, Aya Shlachter, Adam Lewis Walker, Cheryl Lau, and one of the first podcasters ever, Todd Cochrane the event was a great success.

A massive congratulations to Chris Krismitsos and everyone involved for organizing such an incredible event in Asia. Seven Million Bikes Podcasts is already looking forward to next year!

  1. Podcasts Gaining Traction in the Philippines: Comedy Reigns Supreme

The Philippines is seeing a rise in podcast consumption, with nearly 20% (17 million) of internet users tuning in weekly. A recent survey conducted by leading publishers The Pod Network Entertainment (who were also at Podfest Asia, Kroma Entertainment’s Anima Podcasts, and PumaPodcast reveals some interesting insights:

  • Comedy is King: Filipinos have a strong preference for humor, with a whopping 74% of respondents naming comedy as their favorite podcast genre. It was great to see Mikey Bustos and James Caraan at Podfest Asia!
  • Large Potential Audience: This high engagement, coupled with the Philippines’ large population (115.6 million) and strong English literacy rate, suggests a significant untapped market for podcast creators.

This presents a great opportunity for those looking to expand their podcast audience or create new shows targeted towards the Filipino market, particularly in the comedy genre.

  1. Podcast Measurement Gets Supercharged with Podscribe & Rocker Box Integration

Big news for podcast advertisers! Podscribe, a leader in podcast attribution, just joined forces with Rocker Box, a multi-touch attribution (MTA) platform. This game-changing integration brings podcast advertising data into the MTA fold for the first time, allowing for a much clearer picture of campaign performance.

What it means for you:

  • Unified campaign analysis: No more siloed data! See how your podcast ads work alongside social media, PPC, and email marketing efforts – all in one place.
  • Smarter ad spend: Optimize your budget across channels by understanding which ones truly drive conversions.
  • Dominate the podcast space: Confidently expand your podcast advertising with data-driven insights to maximize your return on investment.
  • This integration fills a crucial gap for advertisers looking to leverage the power of podcasting. Now, they can finally measure podcast ad effectiveness alongside other marketing channels, leading to smarter decisions and better business outcomes.
  1. IAB Tech Lab Updates Podcast Measurement Standards

The IAB Tech Lab has finalized an update to their Podcast Technical Measurement Guidelines (v2.2) with the goal of increasing trust in podcast advertising. Here are the key takeaways:

  • Increased Transparency: Measurement companies must now document how they identify and resolve unusual activity (anomalous activities).
  • Focus on Valid Downloads: The update clarifies that “ad delivered” only counts for validated downloads, not all downloads.
  • Addressing Apple Watch Duplication: The final version explicitly requires filtering out downloads from Apple Watches, which can duplicate downloads from paired devices.
  • Standardized Terminology: The update clarifies the difference between measurement using download redirects and server logs. It also defines “fixed” and “rolling” measurement windows.

Overall, these updates aim to bring more transparency and consistency to podcast measurement, benefiting both advertisers and podcast creators.

  1. New Podcast: Risky Business Uses Poker Strategies to Help You Make Better Decisions

Poker champion Maria Konnikova and statistician Nate Silver are teaming up for a new podcast called “Risky Business.” The show, launching May 16th, will explore how the skills used in poker can be applied to everyday decision-making, from politics to personal choices.

Both Konnikova and Silver are accomplished in their own fields: Konnikova is a bestselling author who won over half a million playing poker, while Silver is a renowned statistician who co-founded the data journalism site FiveThirtyEight.

“Risky Business” goes beyond just card games. The show will leverage Konnikova’s psychology background and Silver’s political forecasting expertise to analyze current events and political strategies through the lens of probability and game theory.

Listeners can expect to learn how to approach difficult choices in a new light, using frameworks developed in the high-stakes world of poker.

  1. Leanne Alie Announced as Chair of Judges for British Podcast Awards 2024

Leanne Alie, head of podcasts for The Artists Partnership, will lead the judging panel for the British Podcast Awards 2024. The deadline for submitting entries is May 9th.

  • Alie is a previous award winner herself and a strong advocate for diversity in podcasting.
  • She will be joined by Hannah Maguire and Suruthi Bala, the hosts of popular true-crime podcast RedHanded, which has won the Listeners’ Choice Award for the past three years.
  • The British Podcast Awards ceremony will be held on September 26th in London.
  1. Saudi Podcast Episode Breaks Records on YouTube

A Saudi Arabian podcast episode titled “Fnjan” has become the most-watched podcast episode globally on YouTube, surpassing the likes of the Joe Rogan and Elon Musk episode. Here’s a breakdown of the key points:

  • Views and Demographics: The Fnjan episode featuring Yasser Al Hazimi, a communication skills trainer, has garnered over 100 million views in just over a year. Notably, 74% of the viewers are from outside Saudi Arabia, with the largest audience group being between 25-34 years old. Interestingly, 21% watched with English subtitles.
  • Content and Appeal: The 3-hour episode focused on human relationships, achieving balance, and self-love. The presenter’s charisma and the episode’s relevance to navigating modern social complexities are seen as reasons for its success.
  • Host and Podcast: Fnjan, meaning “a small Arabic coffee cup,” is the flagship podcast of Thmanyah, a Saudi media technology company. Hosted by Thmanyah’s founder, Abdelrahman Abumalih, the show features well-known Arab personalities in discussions on diverse topics. Fnjan episodes are known for their length (over 3 hours) and depth, averaging over 1 million views each.
  • Thmanyah’s Expansion: Founded in 2016, Thmanyah has transitioned from a media entity to a tech-powered business. They aim to revolutionize online content creation in the Arabic language, not just regionally but globally. Their efforts include “Radio Thmanyah” for podcasts, a platform for articles, and podcast hosting services.

This news highlights the growing popularity of podcasts in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region, with Saudi Arabia having the highest number of “heavy” podcast listeners (15% of adults).

  1. Podcast Ads: Positivity is the Key to Success

New research from Nielsen highlights the growing importance of brand-building advertising in podcasts, with positive emotions driving effectiveness. 

  • Shifting Focus: Podcast ad spending is moving from direct response marketing towards brand building, with brand-lift studies becoming increasingly common.
  • Positive Impact: Studies show podcasts significantly increase brand awareness, purchase intent, and the likelihood of information seeking and recommendations.
  • Receptiveness to Ads: Two-thirds of listeners find podcast ads appropriate for the medium, with high ratings for host credibility and positive perceptions.
  • Power of Positivity: Both content and host characteristics should be positive. Listeners associate podcasts with interesting, entertaining, and authentic content, while hosts are seen as likeable, credible, and relatable.
  • Podcast Reach: Edison Research data shows podcasts reaching a significant audience, with monthly reach between 57-65% for key demographics and weekly reach at 40-49%. For 18-34 year olds, podcasts rival TV in weekly reach (48% vs 50%).
  1. Podcast: Navigating the Politics of a Public Hospital Conversion (Counsel That Cares)

Counsel That Cares, a podcast exploring legal and business issues in healthcare, published the second part of the series on converting public hospitals to private entities. Healthcare attorney Jesse Neil, public policy attorney Ty Jackson, and Isaac Squyres, a partner at healthcare consulting firm Jarrard Inc., navigate the complexities of this process.

The conversation focuses on crucial aspects like navigating the legal and regulatory frameworks, establishing a strategic governance structure for the new private entity, and effectively communicating with both internal staff and the surrounding community. They emphasize the importance of balancing the board’s legal duties with their responsibility to the community while ensuring a smooth transition of care for patients throughout the conversion.

  1. Global Podcast Listenership on the Rise

New data from YouGov reveals a growing trend of podcast listening around the world. Here are some key takeaways:

  • High Engagement in the US: A significant portion of US consumers (39%) dedicate over an hour weekly to podcasts.
  • Global Leaders: South Africa leads the pack with 68% of internet users listening to podcasts regularly, followed by Saudi Arabia (59%) and Indonesia (57%).
  • EU Trends Echoed: YouGov’s findings align with data from Reuters Institute, showing Ireland, Spain, and Sweden as top podcast listeners in the European Union.

Overall, podcasting appears to be a flourishing medium with a global audience, with some regions demonstrating particularly strong engagement.

It’s important to note that YouGov’s data for South Africa includes only internet users, potentially skewing the overall listening percentage.