Why Slate went all-in on podcasts while others focused on video

Simon Owens:

This fervent fandom is why Slate and other podcast networks are able to charge such high advertising rates, much higher than what you could typically demand for online display advertising. Because the ads are often read out by the hosts themselves, often in some creative way, listeners don’t feel the urge to skip ahead. “During one of our earliest live shows that had been sponsored by Audible.com, David Plotz was doing the Audible ad in front of the audience,” said Bowers. “He said , ‘Political Gabfest is sponsored by … well you know who it’s sponsored by,’ and the whole audience yelled ‘Audible.com!’ When that happened I was like, OK, that’s pretty effective advertising.”

Pretty wild that such an old medium demands some of the highest ad prices but I can completely see why. I normally listen to podcasts while driving so it’s impossible to fast forward through the ads while on every other medium its easy to scroll right past or look away. 

It must be working well because I definitely remember the sponsors of the podcasts I listen to. Looking at you Audible, Squarespace, and Legalzoom. 

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