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Audio is here to stay

Trend 1- Back to the future: Audio eclipses streaming

by: Sabrina Clarke

· Transformation

I have not listened to one episode of the Joe Rogan Experience podcast. I may be one of the only people on the planet since it reportedly has had 191 million downloads for just one month. Many people know Joe Rogan, have heard his name, or became familiar with the recent COVID misinformation and Spotify controversy.

 While I have kept updated on the shenanigans, I am more interested in the trend. I recently mentioned I am watching three trends. Trend 1, Back to the future- Audio eclipsing video streaming is of particular interest. Entertainment started as audio before film, and video content took over. Audio took a back seat until voice content started to peak in 2014. Netflix, Hulu and other streaming platforms cannibalised the streaming content space until entertainment returned to audio. From podcasts, books to plays, audio is the future. That future is more individuals like Joe Rogan getting a $100 million deal reportedly and having advertisers vying for space during an episode.  Along with micro-content creators that appeal to a niche audiences.

Shifts start with wars. The war for talent has started. Neil Young announced that he would be leaving Spotify due to the Joe Rogan controversy. A list of artists soon followed. Tidal smartly started its marketing campaign to attract these celebrities and the conscious consumers who align to the boycott. The activist economy is alive and well, ensuring enough revenue to go around. While the future of Spotify's relationship and revenue with Joe Rogan remains intact, we can be sure companies are opening up their supply chains for content creators.

Audio is becoming as integral as any digital portfolio. It leaves the question open about how companies will need to adapt to this change to engage with their clients, customers and consumers. Not everyone needs a podcast, nor is it appropriate for every business; however, for certain companies, establishing an audio presence will need to be fundamental to their marketing and thought leadership approach. For example, creating something as simple as an audio e-book to complement traditional digital e-books is a practical way to integrate the changes that audio brings to the marketplace. Whether or not companies engage with audio will be based on several variables. However, one thing that will not change is that audio is here to stay.


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