In a recent post, New York magazine technology columnist Kevin Roose writes that after a few years of waning interest, today’s world of podcasting is experiencing a “renaissance” in growth and is, “more alive than ever.” In support of that claim, Roose cites the most recent Infinite Dial study from Edison Research and Triton Digital, which reported that some 39 million respondents had listened to a podcast in the 30 days prior to the research study being taken — the highest number on record. So what’s behind the resurging interest in a technology that was first introduced in the early 2000′s? Three key things: Improved quality/content, compelling economics and connected cars. “Connected cars are a boon for the entire streaming audio industry, but they’re especially exciting for podcast makers, whose shows are perfectly suited to in-car listening,” writes Roose. “Just as TV watchers can now choose Netflix or Amazon streams over surfing channels, radio listeners will soon have a bevy of on-demand options at their disposal.” Read the full article HERE.
Paris, France-based worldwide digital streaming music service Deezer announced today that it will acquire Stitcher, the San Francisco-based personalized Internet Talk radio and mobile audio provider. Stitcher currently carries 8 of the top 10 broadcast radio talk shows, content from more than 12,000 providers and is enabled for the connected dashboard in more than 50 automobile models from BMW, Ford, GM, Jaguar and Mazda. It’s also available via Apple CarPlay and Android Auto … Former WIBA/Madison host Mitch Henck (pictured) — who got ‘RIF’d’ at the iHeartMedia-owned News/Talker this past June after a 12-year run — will launch a new daily online talk show on Monday (10/27). The Mitch Henck Show will stream from 8-11am (CT) weekdays at MitchHenck.com … iHeartRadio joins the lineup of Apple’s new CarPlay, placing the popular smartphone app directly into the automobile dashboard … The previously announced debut of Jenny McCarthy’s new daily SiriusXM show – Dirty, Sexy, Funny with Jenny McCarthy — happens Monday on the satellite radio service’s Stars channel, from 10am-noon (ET).
You’ve likely read about last weekend’s Pumpkin Fest riots in Keene, NH, a town that also happens to be the home of Free Talk Live host Ian Freeman. Ian (pictured) was on the ground and witnessed crowds of drunken college students destroying property, as well as what he terms, “an unnecessarily aggressive police response” to the situation. Station newsrooms, hosts and producers who would like to get Freeman’s up-close-and-personal views on the chaotic weekend scene in the small New Hampshire town can reach him HERE … WYD Media Ad Sales has inked a deal with Spreaker to rep ad sales for the digital talk media and audio content distribution platform. Additionally WYD will assist Spreaker with overall brand management and creation of alternative and customized opportunities for the advertising community … Carlos Lamadrid has been appointed Vice President of National Sales and Strategic Partnerships for Entercom. Lamadrid, most recently SVP at TC Media, will report to Entercom Station Group President Weezie Kramer.
Bridge Ratings, which has been trending News/Talk radio preferences since 1999, has released a new report that was recently posted at LinkedIn by company President/CEO Dave Van Dyke. So what is the study’s top line finding? Information overload is causing fatigue for some News/Talk listeners. “Over-saturation, ever-shortening of news cycles and repetition of hard news with too-little updated information, is wearing thin on consumers who are seeking alternative sources for information that is fresh, entertaining and positive,” writes Van Dyke (pictured). “Radio has become one of many pieces in the media landscape puzzle. This role has become uncomfortable for broadcasters but should be seen as an opportunity to reinvent, develop and serve their communities during a time of rich information flow and a vast funnel of information to consume.” Bridge’s latest study is based on interviews with some 3,200 News/Talk radio listeners who consume at least 3 hours of News/Talk radio weekly. Respondents were compiled through random digital dial, internet self-administered questionnaires and in-person interviews, with a margin of error of +/- 1.7%.
California legislators recently stopped doing … well, whatever it is that they do … to bestow several nicely penned kudos and officially sanctioned certificates to PodcastOne CEO Norm Pattiz, saluting the longtime broadcaster and entrepreneur for his company’s achievements in on-demand audio. The official proclamations were handed out on the recently held National Podcast Day (what, you say missed that holiday?) by the California State Assembly, the State Senate and the County of Los Angeles. PodcastOne bills itself as “the leader in podcasting” with a reported 120 million monthly downloads from a menu of more than 200 programs.
Shazam and Sun Broadcast Group have entered into a new digital partnership to “change how listeners consume and interact with radio.” The new partnership will enable the launch of Shazam’s latest platform integration, Shazam for Radio, a full-service localized product that allows stations to create totally customized, interactive content for listeners and advertisers. Shazam will also power all of Sun’s national programming, giving listeners second-screen content live and in real time as they listen to the radio. While Shazam is likely already familiar to music radio consumers, Sun Broadcast Group CEO Jason Bailey tells NTS MediaOnline Today that the new partnership also has significant implications for spoken-word programming. “Imagine listening to a newscast on the radio. ‘Shazamming’ it while you’re listening will pop-up the videos, interviews, live feeds and interactive experiences for the stories broadcast. We will implement Shazam on all our talk shows, including The Marilu Henner Show, to offer second-screen content. For example, when Marilu (pictured) interviews an author on her show, if you Shazam that interview you’ll get the book review, a message from the author and we’ll even put the book in your shopping cart allowing you to buy it with one click. It will send extended weather forecasts and live radar to your phone during the weather report, or live traffic-cam streams when the traffic report airs on the radio. The possibilities are endless. It will make music, Talk and everything in between more interactive.” Learn more about Shazam HERE.
Sirius XM satellite radio has debuted a number of new Talk offerings for subscribers this week, including Joel Osteen Radio (channel 128), featuring inspirational sermons from Osteen’s huge library of messages … Also launching is The Karen Hunter Show, a daily talk and interview show available on the satcaster’s Urban View channel, Monday-Friday, at 4pm (ET). Hunter is a Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist and author who holds the distinction of being the New York Daily News’ first-ever African-American news columnist … SiriusXM also premiered its inaugural NBA Radio Training Camp Tour this week, with visits to a dozen NBA team pre-season training camps planned, leading up to the 2014-15 season. SiriusXM NBA Radio hosts on the tour will include former players and coaches including Antonio Davis, Mike Dunleavy Sr., Eddie Johnson, Malik Rose, Jerry Stackhouse and Mateen Cleaves, as well as Frank Isola and Justin Termine … Finally, we’re not sure exactly just what was going on in the photo above from last night’s SiriusXM Town Hall Meeting, but rocker Dave Grohl and comedian/talk host Chelsea Handler seemed to be having a pretty good time during their conversation that will debut tomorrow night at 6pm (ET) on the satcaster’s Entertainment Weekly Radio channel.
A newly released report contains some interesting insights for audio sellers who compete for dollars against TV sellers. eMarketer.com says that out of all the many ways that consumers multi-task, the most common is using a digital device while watching TV. The study further notes that more Internet users use their second screen during a show vs. during commercials, representing what researchers called “a transformation of TV from being a focal point to being just one of many access screens competing for attention.” eMarketer says while in some cases this digital activity pertains directly to the show or ad that people are watching, in most instances the activities are unrelated. eMarketer sums up the big picture takeaway from the study saying, “A major portion of digital activity during TV shows has nothing to do with the show or the commercials. People simply drift away from the program and do other activities on their devices.” Read more HERE.
Legendary Talk radio host Neal Boortz, who stepped away from full-time hosting duties last year after more than four decades of success in both local and national broadcasting, is changing his title to ‘semi-retired’ as he joins ConnectPal.com, the new digital venture headed by former Premiere Networks syndicated host Andy Dean. Boortz (pictured), a 2009 National Radio Hall of Fame honoree, says he plans to offer his show “2-3 times a week” for his ConnectPal subscribers. Commenting on why he opted to park his RV every now and then to join the new digital platform’s lineup Boortz said, “After stepping down from full-time radio last year, I was looking for a platform to podcast and there is only one good choice – ConnectPal. I get to do shows however I want, whenever I want, and I set my price for my work. My new show will offer the painful truth about current events and I am an equal opportunity offender — so no one is safe.” Learn more HERE.
News clip site Grabien — billed as “the world’s first online marketplace for professionally edited, crowd-sourced news multi-media” — has unveiled a new tool built specifically for Talk radio producers. Dubbed The Daily Sound Packet, Grabien founder Tom Elliott reports the new tool means producers will no longer have to transcribe clips, label files, or type up a daily sound sheet. Instead they can simply log in, select the clips they’d like to use, and click download. Users will receive a zipped folder with the clips labeled in the proper order, as well as a sound sheet/clip list with full transcriptions. Elliott, himself a longtime talk producer, says the new tool has enabled him to cut the average time it takes to prep a 20-clip sound packet from around 8 hours down to about 30 minutes. “We think this new tool eliminates the last remaining ’nitty-gritty’ work producers waste time with as part of their daily show production,” he said. Watch a YouTube video demo of the new tool HERE.