Top Podcast Networks Kickoff Second Annual U.S. Upfront Tour in Los Angeles
PRESS RELEASE — February 12, 2020
Los Angeles CA, USA—The industry’s leading podcast publishers and platforms kicked off the second annual U.S. upfront tour at the Ray Kurtzman Theater at Creative Artists Agency in Los Angeles, California. Featuring a keynote presentation from Tom Webster, senior vice president of Edison Research, the biggest names in podcasting presented new shows and partnerships while discussing the biggest trends in-store for the industry in 2020.
Taking place in the heart of Hollywood, this year’s Podfront LA reinforced podcasting as a key player in the entertainment industry, with presenters announcing more partnerships with talent from across the film and television space. On-screen personalities continue to diversify their platforms and move behind the microphone, utilizing podcasting as a new medium to engage with and establish key audiences.
At a time where the advertising market is thriving, with 90 million monthly listeners in 2019, an increase of 6% over the prior year and new listeners --- from Gen Z to Boomers – discovering podcasting every day, the Podfront series provides advertisers, agencies and media the latest insights, resources and opportunities to take advantage of this rapidly growing medium.
The 2020 upfront tour will continue across the U.S. with stops in San Francisco and Chicago. More details on those presentations and hosts will be announced in the coming months.
Among the highlights at Podfront LA:
Cadence13, a division of RADIO.COM, previewed the first half of its 2020 slate, presented by C13 Founding Partners Chris Corcoran, C13’s Chief Content Officer and Spencer Brown, SVP, RADIO.COM Podcast Network. The slate featured the latest breakthrough documentary franchises from C13Originals, creators of the #1 podcast Root of Evil, including: Season Two of the music documentary franchise Long May They Run, about iconic touring bands and their impact on music and culture; Season Two of Gangster Capitalism, the franchise about white collar corruption and the dark side of the American dream; and a new true life noir suspense franchise set in Los Angeles in the 80s. They also discussed the latest on the #1 new podcast Unlocking Us from Brené Brown, the globally renowned researcher and #1 _New York Times_bestselling author; and _Origins: Almost Famous—_the next chapter of the hit series hosted by award-winning journalist and bestselling author James Andrew Miller exploring the story behind Cameron Crowe’s iconic film in celebration of its 20th anniversary.
iHeartRadio discussed the latest podcast trends and programming and its unique ability to provide scale through its broadcast radio stations to introduce podcasts to the vast majority of Americans. The iHeartPodcast Network features some of today’s most listened to podcasts, including “Stuff You Should Know,” “The Ron Burgundy Podcast,” “Disgraceland” and “Monster: DC Sniper.” iHeartRadio also gave a sneak preview of its upcoming spring and summer line up featuring new series within their Comedy, Music and Crime podcast slates.
Stitcher and its advertising arm, Midroll, were represented by Chief Revenue Officer, Sarah van Mosel, who offered exclusive previews of upcoming shows from household names, new diverse voices and compelling true crime. Stitcher also showcased new ad products and discussed opportunities for advertisers and agencies in Los Angeles to partner with upcoming content. Sarah was joined by television host and comedian, Conan O’Brien, whose podcast, Conan O’Brien Needs a Friend, launched its second season this past fall.
NPR podcast Host Shereen Marisol Meraji of Code Switch, Host & Editorial Director Guy Raz of TED Radio Hour, How I Built This, and Wow In The World discussed their creative craft, building community with their audiences and the power of audio storytelling. Senior Vice President for Programming and Audience Development of NPR Anya Grundmann, shared the latest programming updates and podcasting capabilities at NPR. President & CEO of National Public Media Gina Garrubbo presented insights into spoken word listening habits, changing consumer patterns in audio and sponsorship offerings from the podcast publisher with 9 of the Top 20 podcasts and 23.7M monthly listeners in the U.S. (Podtrac, December 2019).
PMM is proud to represent many of the top podcasts in the industry including The Joe Rogan Experience, Armchair Expert with Dax Shepard, This American Life, Serial, Anna Faris is Unqualified and hit comedy podcasts Your Mom’s House, Two Bears One Cave and Bertcast. David Raphael, CEO of PMM introduced Anna Faris, host of Anna Faris is Unqualified, Armchair Expert Hosts and introduced a new limited series from Armchair Expert, a 10 episode series about relationships called Monica and Jess Love Boys. The show will debut Valentine’s Day in the Armchair Expert feed. For a decade PMM has been providing the very best and most effective host read endorsement ads delivering wildly successful campaigns for direct response and brand campaigns.
PodcastOne is the leading advertiser-supported podcast network. Presenting more than 400 hours of programming weekly, the network features cutting-edge content across every content category, reaching every demo. Home to the most successful celebrities, influencers, PodcastOne Sportsnet and true-crime podcasts, PodcastOne topped the charts and the news last year, including mega-hit 22 Hours: An American Nightmare, which held a spot at #1 on Apple Podcasts, and was named the #2 podcast of the year by the Associated Press. Other stars on the network include podcasting Guinness World Record holder Adam Carolla, WWE legend Steve Austin, bachelorette Kaitlyn Bristowe, and rapper multi-hyphenate T.I.
Westwood One’s President Suzanne Grimes reviewed America’s largest audio network’s commitment to continuous innovation, introducing new multi-platform ad opportunities and podcast industry insights. SVP Digital Partnerships Kelli Hurley previewed Westwood One’s expanded slate of blockbuster Conversational Podcasts in the News & Insights, Sports, Life & Entertainment, and Business, Money & Tech verticals, with memorable appearances from nationally syndicated radio host Zach Sang, reality television personality and businesswoman Vicki Gunvalson, NFL defensive lineman Michael Bennett and his accomplished wife Pele, and Sports podcasting superstars Mark Titus and Tate Frazier.
Wondery’s CEO, Hernan Lopez presented Wondery’s exciting 2020 slate with new launches of Bunga Bunga, Even the Rich, and the follow-up season to the global phenomenon of Dr. Death, along with new partnerships such as School of Greatness, NBC News and All Things Comedy.
Wondery is the largest independent podcast publisher in the world, known for character-driven, binge-worthy stories including “Dirty John,” “Dr. Death,” “WeCrashed”, “The Shrink Next Door,” “Blood Ties” and “Business Wars.” Wondery is behind 8 of the Top 20 New Shows of 2019 according to Podtrac. Twenty-five of Wondery’s shows have hit #1 on Apple Podcasts. Ten of them have been, or are in the process of being, adapted for scripted television. Wondery has gained critical acclaim and commercial success for its immersive approach to sonic, emotionally-immersive storytelling which helps listeners to feel the story.
For more information on Podfront Los Angeles and schedule of presenters, visit www.podfront.com.
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