Podcaster are figuring out how monetise with paying subscribers

Though increasingly popular and having support from more streaming platforms, podcasts are still trying to figure out how to turn listeners into paying subscribers. — AFP Relaxnews

Will it all pay off? This is the question that podcast players are asking themselves. After having found its audience, the sector is now wondering about its economic model.

Platforms such as Spotify and Apple offer monetisation solutions for creators of audio programs, but with varying degrees of success. We take a closer look.

You can't have missed the fact that podcasts are a hot commodity. Recent statistics suggest that there are 120 million "podcast listeners" in the US, a number that has increased by nearly 30% over the last three years and which is projected to reach 160 million by 2023.

The pandemic has a lot to do with it. In pre-pandemic times, people used to listen to podcasts to entertain themselves in the car or on public transport. Now they've made their way into our homes along with smart speakers, and it's not uncommon to dive into one of these pocket-sized audio formats while cooking, gardening or even before bed.

One recent move in the podcast business in an attempt to capitalise on this trend is the offer of paid subscription packages that benefit the creators of such audio content. Spotify in the lead. For several years now, the music streaming giant has been investing in the different aspects of the podcast industry.

So much so that Hot Pod, a newsletter specialising in the podcast world, says that Daniel Ek's company "no longer a music company but one committed to podcasting."

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