Hello Folks, here’s the 4th edition of the weekly roundup.
Who’s your audio daddy?
Seth Resler, Digital Dot Connector at Jacobs media wrote an interesting post on why radio broadcast companies should hire a Director of Podcasts. After a fair bit of thinking, I think all media companies should hire a director of podcasts, especially publishers.
Podcasting is growing, there is no doubt about that. But the question is at what pace? I’d wager that this question won’t be answered anytime soon. But regardless, publishers are flocking to podcasts in search of potential audiences. The New York Times, Washington Post, Slate, The Wall Street Journal, Financial Times, The Guardian, and hundreds of other major publishers are building thriving podcasting operations. Even in a country like India where the podcasting medium is in an embryonic state, publishers such as Indian Express, Newslaundry, Moneycontrol, Bloomberg Quint, BBC India among others have started podcasting. Even platforms like Medium and Substack are getting in on the action.
The entrance of big names into the space also serves the purpose of expanding the audiences which smaller publishers can piggyback on.
The beauty of podcasts as someone described is that it is an in-between medium. Most podcasts are consumed in between things people are doing such as commuting, working out etc. I mostly consume podcasts when I commute between my home and office and I am totally tuned into the shows I listen to. That’s an incredibly valuable spot for publishers to be in. Loyalty is also a key advantage when it comes to podcasts. According to the 2018 Infinite Dial Report, 80% of the respondents listen to all or most of an episode.
Brands have also started getting in on the podcasting action. Major brands such as GE, Netflix, Tinder, Reebok, eBay, Microsoft among others have started branded podcasts. This also raises a lot of ethical question which we will grapple with in our future editions.
Now that Google is finally serious about podcasting, it can potentially double the audience size worldwide. 75.9% of all smartphones globally run on Android. This means that in the next few years podcasts are poised for exponential growth, all things considered.
To sum it all up, podcasts can potentially be a source of audience growth for media companies. Smaller audiences can also potentially be an advantage for financially stable publishers in countries such as India if they are willing to stick it out. The payoffs can be incredibly lucrative when the audiences start growing.
So yeah, it’s time for you to find an audio guy for your company.
Podcasters have a habit of making things difficult for themselves. Something as simple as the choice of the link used to share a podcast can potentially mean losing out on listeners. The sharing experience has always been broken. The question of which link to use – Apple or Google when sharing on social media has always been an enduring one. Dan Misener in this rather prescient piece explains how to use smart links to automatically redirect people to the respective platforms based on the device.
What is WordPress up to?
I suspect that this move may somehow tie to the companies interest in media. Automattic had acquired Longfrom and Atavist Magazine some time ago.
WordPress.com also recently released a slew of updates to make hosting podcasts easier. It will be very interesting to see what the company intends to do with podcasts. I will most definitely be keeping an eye on these folks.
Matt Mullenweg, the co-founder of WordPress, spoke to Kara Swisher on the Recode Decode podcast recently. If you are interested in knowing more about WordPress, I highly recommend that you listen to this episode.
Comedian and actress Lauren Lapkus spoke to Microsoft’s AI chatbot Zo on her podcast, Raised by TV. It was a really funny exchange, you can check out the conversation here.
As for Zo’s ability to mimic human speech patterns, Lapkus was particularly surprised when the bot threw out a resounding “YAAAAS QUEEN” during their chat. “Hearing Zo say it really added a new level to the phrase,” says Lapkus. “She was also pretty sarcastic with me, which really, really hurt my feelings and I still haven’t gotten over it.” – Fast Company
A podcast hosted by an AI bot? Doesn’t seem all that implausible, we’ll keep our ears peeled.
Do we really need to reimagine podcasts for India? Karthik Vijayakumar, host of the Design Your Thinking podcast says, yes.
Given the strong history of radio in India, the current popularity of FM Radio and the massive changes in the technology that India has witnessed in the last 3 years, I think the answer is a Yes.
Podcasts, as they exist in the west, may not just work as it is in India.
In this sweeping article, he looks at the history of Radio in India and how that influences the podcasting habits in India.
Voices From India
iTunes, Google Podcasts and podcatchers like Castbox are not the only sources of podcasts. Here are some alternatives where you can discover good podcasts
Yes, the music streaming service is also home to a number of original audio programming under the banner of Saavn Originals. The standout among them are Trial by error, a Serial styled gripping true crime drama based on the Aarushi murder case, Kahaani Express by Neelesh Misra, and No filter Neha, hosted by Neha Dhupia among others. The podcasts are however available to subscribers only. Fun fact: Saavn is actually an acronym for, wait for it – South Asian Audio Visual Network!
The music streaming service of Bookmyshow also features podcasts. The platform has a great library of original programming on JukeBox including Sports Trippin’ – a roundup of the biggest stories from the world of sports.
A subscription-based service, that offers audiobooks, e-books, and other original programming similar to podcasts, packaged as audiobooks.
3Things – The flagship daily news show of Indian Express podcasts hosted by the brilliant Neha Mathews celebrated a hundred episodes, yay! Here’s to many more!
Simblified – The 100th episode of Simblified, IVM’s show that aims to make you smarter, hosted by the brilliant trio of Chuck, Naren, and Srikeit, is going to be recorded live on August 25th, 2018 at Doolally Taproom – Khar, Mumbai. Details here, RSVP now!
Know Your Kanoon
Hosted by lawyer AmberRana, every Wednesday, this show answers questions about laws, rights, and policies to bring in clarity about the legal justice system in India.
Kieran Read’s Bedtime Stories
Kieran Read, captain of the New Zealand national rugby team launched this podcast to help you put your kids to sleep.
The Indignities of Being a Woman
Merrill Markoe and Megan Koester in this show will explore what it is like to be a woman in the 21st century.
In this episode Rajkummar Rao, the critically acclaimed actor talks about his beginnings, his journey to becoming an actor from the stage to the silver screen, his role in Newton, what he thinks about brand endorsements, the problem with censorship, and the importance of secularism.
The Intersection – Our Plastic Addiction Is Destroying The Planet
Did you know, of the 8.3 billion metric tons of plastic produced till today, 6.3 billion metric tons has become plastic waste and ONLY nine percent of this has been recycled? Find out more about how plastic is causing serious damage to our ecosystem and what we can do about it, in this episode of The Intersection, Audiomatic’s flagship podcast!
The Memory Palace
One of the best short podcasts out there, The Memory palace is a repository of surprising stories of the past, sometimes heartbreaking, sometimes hysterical, often a little bit of both. If you appreciate history, you’ll definitely love what the podcast has to offer.
Nick Quah on The Substack Podcast
Nathan Bashaw, VP of product at Substack spoke to Nick Quah, who runs Hot Pod – the newsletter of record for the podcast industry. I have been a great admirer of his writing and the clarity with which he covers the space is phenomenal. If you are a podcaster or even interested in podcasting then you should definitely listen to this episode.
Silly things investors do – The Curious Investor
Dan Villalon and Gabe Feghali talk to Nobel Prize winner, Richard Thaler and behavioural economist, Nicholas Barberis about the most common biases that afflict investors. This is thoroughly enlightening.
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