Spotify’s Patreon-Style Podcasting Experiment


PodMov Daily: Wednesday, February 24

Episode 377: Your Midweek Update

Spotify’s Patreon-Style Podcasting Experiment 

This spring Spotify will begin beta testing a paid podcast subscription feature on Anchor. On other platforms, creators have been offering bonus content for years. What will fan-supported podcasting look like from Spotify? Sarah Perez of TechCrunch breaks down what Anchor has been willing to say in the early stages.

According to Anchor co-founder Michael Mignano, creators will be able to decide what “the paid experience” will include. Perez mentions “bonus episodes or interviews, or even ad-free content, if they prefer.” If ad-free episodes won’t be the primary draw for fans, that would certainly set Anchor’s model apart.

Spotify CEO Daniel Ek offered this in an interview with The Verge: “How you monetize an average consumer the first time you have them listen to you is going to be very different than how you monetize one of your super fans.” With an X-ray into their every move, Ek will soon find out what makes super fans tick.

A Revolution Opportunity for Indie Podcasters

A message from Kara McGuirk-Allison, a founding producer of NPR’s Hidden Brain: “I call for a revolution!” After spending most of her career working on NPR shows, she started a media consulting company and dove into indie podcasting solo. The main takeaway? “Just having a good podcast isn’t enough.”

Despite being an award-winning producer of 25 years, McGuirk-Allison received virtually no interest from partners or advertisers. She argues that smaller creators need a revolution of infrastructure: a collective of labels like the Independent Podcast Network, founded by veteran journalist and podcaster Sunny Gault.

Realistic opportunities are disappearing as the industry grows, McGuirk-Allison writes. “I fear if we don’t prioritize the indie podcasters, we will be stifling creativity […] We must demand quality, share resources, and find ways to get excellent podcasts in front of an audience.” This piece contains strong language.

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Everyone you will ever meet knows something you don’t.

Here's what else is going on:

  • Label maker: Podcast swag is evolving, writes Kevin Cortez for Hot Pod. (Fewer T-shirts, more ‘snapchilled’ coffee.) “We’re now living in an age where podcasts are expanding and experimenting with their branding, and frankly, in my opinion, that merch is becoming so much cooler.” 
  • Access denied: Podcast hosting sites including Buzzsprout, Spreaker, and Captivate were the targets of DDoS attacks in recent days. As explained by Buzzsprout, a distributed denial-of-service is when “somebody spams a server with so many requests that it takes the entire site offline.”
  • Space force: Slate podcaster Christina Cauterucci (Outward) was stunned to see Barack Obama and the Boss in a “cavernous, window-lined” room. “Have the rest of us been courting spinal injuries and eye strain from recording inside cramped pillow forts and dark closets for nothing?”
  • Stop sign: You’ve gotten a cease and desist because your podcast shares a name with another. What now? Simplecast COO and “actual lawyer” Jeanine Percival Wright reviews your options. To avoid litigation, brush up on those common law trademark rights before the conversation starts.

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