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December 30, 2020 7 min

Podcasting is getting bigger - monthly podcast listening went over 100 million Americans this year, before pandemic.


Pandemic paused things, we all scattered but came back. Desktop listening ticked up, overall listening shifted later in day as we got up later and didn't get in our cars, but new routines formed. Another pandemic affect - technology. Grandparents are now on Zoom, Facetime, and more. Which means more people listening.  It also means more people creating. We went over a million podcasts in 2020, and at our current pace, we could hit 2 million in 2021.   The key will be quality -  anybody can create a show with mediocre content or audio quality.  But if you can excel at both, the cream will rise to the top.

Nick Hilton in Medium, tech more accessible:

Also, look at  shorter shows - increasingly on demand world, with more online content competing for our attention. Better too short than too long.  Leave your audience wanting more.


Over $1 billion industry in 2021 - woulda been 2020.  Top Tier shows are starting to hit a saturation point - Bank of America and McDonalds dropped $3.5 million on podcasting in November.  Blubrry CEO Todd Cochrane tells Podcast Business Journal that  "second tier" shows will start seeing more advertisers - those are shows between 1k and 20k downloads.

Something to keep an eye on in 2021 is dynamic, or targeted advertising. The industry is getting better at sending custom ads to you based on your location, interests, and more.  (YouTubeTV). But privacy concerns are growing - opt in/opt out? How much info will advertisers have access to?

Music in Podcasts:

Anchor/Spotify allowing - kinks to work out - but could position them as leader in 2021.


Podcast Movement looked different last year, international online this year, and with the racial reckoning we've seen this year, more and more voices.  More countries too.

Big Names in Podcasting:

Spotify on fire - Apple is going to have to do more - Google finally getting it together - iHeartRadio all in - big one to watch is Amazon - Prime had big year, Alexa integration.    I do think there's a medium market - me, as opposed to $25k per show

Finally, Soul Stories on Spotify: Trent Reznor, Jon Batiste, Jamie Foxx, Angela Bassett:


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