Early this year, Spotify went all-in on podcasts and was in an acquisition spree. The giant audio streaming giant acquired Gimlet Media and Anchor. for reportedly $300 million. Gimlet Media was a podcast network and producer which hosts shows like StartUp, Homecoming, Mogul, The Pitch, Reply All, The Cut, Science VS while Anchor was a DIY podcasting startup. Anchor’s platform had set of tools that made it super easy for anyone(beginner and Pro) to create and monetize their own podcasts and for free Anchor power up to 40% of the world’s new podcasts.
Parcast also got acquired for $100m. Parcast is a producer for crime, mystery and sci-fi podcasts. The company also partnered with BBC Studios and P&G to create more podcasts.
Podcasts made 20% of Spotify’s usage and the new acquisitions plus their partnership with Barack and Michelle Obama’s media company, Higher Ground Productions for a multiyear podcasting deal are the company’s efforts to help them find new users, keep the current ones, generate revenue while at it and increase profits as making podcasts inhouse is much more cheaper than songs from music labels.
Spotify chief executive and co-founder said that he wants his platform to “become both the premier producer of podcasts and the leading platform for podcast creators”.
They recently announced Your Daily Podcast that will feature personalized podcast playlists that use similar algorithms that power its curated playlists such as Discover Weekly and Daily Mix.
Spotify recently began their Wrapped Campaign where they summed up the listening habits of some 248 million listeners in which people took to social media to share together with a ton of memes – some of which are Apple Music users getting mad and jealous of Spotify users.
An interesting takeaway from Spotify Wrapped is the growth revealed by its podcast business.
There are now more than 500,000 podcast titles available on the platform and that podcast listeners have gone up by more than 50% since the year began with a 39% increase in podcast hours consumed by listeners quarter over quarter.
Globally this year, The Joe Budden Podcast with Rory and Mal, which was the most consumed podcast. In terms of genre, Comedy, Society & Culture, True Crime, News, and Health & Fitness take the higher ranks this year.
Spotify can begin monetising its podcasts for users in the free tier. They recently let advertisers target podcast listeners directly and now the targetting is more granular.