Newspapers Invading The Audio Space

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This week with the launch of El Washington Post, the newspaper now has 18 podcasts on its website for readers to consume. The paper has produced podcasts about war, politics, every President of the United States and, of course, a daily show on impeachment. 

Podcasts put out by newspapers are highly produced, easy to find on their websites and not yet cluttered with ads. Newspapers use the web pages hosting the podcasts for additional digital inventory, such as banners, bringing the newspapers additional cash. And, those newspaper podcasts are just another battleground for the ears of the consumer, as well as advertisers that use audio to reach their customers.

Most national newspapers have caught on to the popularity of audio and podcasting and the potential for another lucrative revenue stream. The most listened to news podcast in America is The Daily from The New York Times. The Book Review podcast from The New York Times begins with a pre-roll ad from Chanel perfume. The Times’ November book review podcast was also recorded live in front of a studio audience.

The Los Angeles Times is all in on podcasts. From Dirty John to Man in The Window to its latest hit with Wondery Detective Trap, The L.A. Times has its own production company called L.A. Times Studios which helps crank out these popular shows. All original content with minimal interuptions, in-depth reporting and no restrictions on time per show. 

The Washington Post’s  El Washington Post, is the Post’s second Spanish-language podcast produced from The Washington Post newsroom. The 20-minute twice weekly show is hosted by Juan Carlos Iragorri, an Emmy Award-winning journalist and author with more than 30 years of experience in print, radio and television. His co-hosts are Dori Toribio, a broadcast journalist who has covered Washington since 2010 for outlets including Spain’s Mediaset TV group, and Jorge Espinosa, radio journalist for Caracol Radio in Bogota.

Many local newspapers are also finding ways to incorporate audio, whether its reporters discussing the local news they cover or sports writers talking about the local football rivalries. All of that extra audio was not available to the public just a few short years ago. Should radio be worried about the return of newspapers?

 

4 COMMENTS

  1. Yes, newspapers are doing podcasts and they also do video. In fact, most major papers had full video coverage of the hearings on their websites. No need to watch a traditional TV station when the newspaper provides the video. I don’t see TV stations complaining.

    But the argument goes both ways. There is no reason why radio stations must be limited to audio only. That is a limitation imposed on ourselves. We can do video, we can provide newsletters to our listeners, we can create content in any format or medium. Record labels are doing far more than making records. So don’t be surprised when other media are playing in our pool. When the traditional business model has topped out, look for ways to adapt what you do to other platforms. That’s how NBC and CBS went from radio networks to TV. Did we forget how to grow?

  2. Couldn’t agree with you more Steve. Local news, sports and the weather trump everything else. Throw in a lost dog here and there and a weekly obituary and it’s a home run.
    Ed Ryan

  3. Radio should be more concerned about the fact that radio has stopped doing news reporting. Few, if any, local stations in major markets have any kind of news content today. All news and NPR stations pick up the slack, but go find a commercial station that has a news department today and you’ll be hard pressed. Podcasting is filling a gap that listeners clearly want filled. Some station owners should think about going against the tide of centrally produced programming content and actually invest in the communities they allegedly serve.

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