A number of people have asked us over the past year or two when the next DASH Conference will be scheduled. You might remember, we partnered with Radio Ink and auto industry consultant Valerie Shuman to produce annual conferences in 2013, 14, and 15.
They were great events held here in the Motor City. And while I would never utter the phrase “Mission Accomplished,” the fact is, DASH is no longer a conference. It is now a fully developed initiative embraced by the NAB. And in the last 18 months, it has brought together auto industry and Tier 1 execs, industry analysts, developers, and consultants (including us) committed to bridging the gap between automakers and radio broadcasters.
And so we move on – to a phenomenon that is also a key driver in radio's future:
How hot is this space? AdWeek reports Gimlet Media recently launched a contest to trawl for podcasting talent. It elicited more than 5,000 entries. They'll be creating a podcast from this contest, “Casting Call.” And the winner will get to launch their own podcast, produced and distributed by Gimlet.
And so, a few years back with the help of our Digital Dot Connector, Seth Resler, we struck up a relationship with the founders of the wildly successfully Podcast Movement conference, Jared Easley and Dan Franks. The pair have created a must-attend event for anyone serious about the podcasting space – and that should include every broadcasting radio company in America (and beyond).
So, last year, we partnered with Jared and Dan to produce a special track of panels, keynotes, and presentations called “Broadcasters Meet Podcasters.” If you were in attendance last year in Anaheim, you saw a full room of people from both industries, enjoying an entire day's worth of sessions.
For 2018 in Philadelphia in a couple weeks, we've expanded our presence to 9 sessions over two days, all under the “BMP” umbrella. Our goal (not unlike DASH) is to bring together two somewhat disparate groups – broadcasters and podcasters – to look for synergies, opportunities and partnerships in the areas of content creation, platforms, and monetization. Our sessions will cover everything from branded podcasts to rules and regulations. We are proud Beasley Media Group is our title sponsor for these jam-packed two days at Podcast Movement.
We are truly excited about our sessions – they are loaded with great talent from both sides of the aisle. The CEO of NPR, Jarl Mohn, will be joining me for a fireside chat (without the fire). NPR has been the runaway leader in podcasting – not just among broadcasters, but across the entire spectrum. Jarl is fantastic, insightful executive who will talk about NPR's vision for on-demand audio, as well as how he sizes up the space.
We've put together a great radio executive panel on Day Two, featuring Caroline Beasley (Beasley), Suzanne Grimes (Westwood One), Ginny Morris (Hubbard), and Julie Talbott (Premiere). The moderator, Elsie Escobar, has some great chops in the podcasting space (host of the popular “She Podcasts”). We're expecting a lively conversation between these powerful, talented women.
And while many of us in radio have been dutifully checking the ratings during the past couple years, researcher Mark Ramsey has quietly built a podcasting franchise of his own. Mark's always had a penchant for films, and has now created a fascinating podcasting series for Wondery – “Inside Psycho,” “Inside The Exorcist,” and his newest entry into the podcast meets horror genre, “Inside Jaws.” These are brilliantly written and produced – and Mark does all the voice work. For a guy known for crunching numbers and designing strategy, these podcasts are standouts. We're excited to hear Mark tell his story.
Two other broadcasters who many of you know – Dave Beasing and Steve Goldstein – will also be on hand, moderating two different panels. Dave and Steve have worked with radio producer Jeff Schmidt to create the hit podcast “Inside Trader Joe's” – a great example of how this media form can be used to create branded audio for all sorts of companies.
Steve's heading up a session on smart speakers and podcasting – a rapidly emerging story. It includes jacapps' Bob Kernen, Spoken Layer's Will Mayo, Midroll's Rob McCracken, and Beasley's Justin Chase.
Dave, on the other hand, will moderate a session among the best and brightest in radio programming about growing a podcasting culture inside traditional radio companies, clusters, and stations. His panelists are Cox's Tim Clarke, Hubbard's Greg Strassell, Beasley's Buzz Knight, and ABC Radio's Brad Mielke.
Speaking of broadcasters creating winning podcasts, Country radio syndication superstar, Bobby Bones, will be on our stage explaining his approach and philosophy to iHeartRadio's SVP of podcasting, Chris Peterson.
We've also got a great session about podcast monetization, headed up by NPR's Brian Moffett, as well as legal advice from radio's top lawyer, David Oxenford.
And back for a third consecutive year is the ever-popular Seth Resler's “Podcast Makeover” – a live, on-stage podcast aircheck featuring PRX's Kerri Hoffman, WMMR's Steve Morrison and Marissa Magnatto, and Gimlet's Kristen Meinzer.
One of our sponsors, Westwood One, will also be hosting “The Art of Podcasting,” featuring Greg “Opie” Hughes, Tim Sabean, and Carl Ruiz. This all-star session will be moderated by accomplished podcaster and storytelling pro, Christine Blackburn. At its heart, most great podcasts feature wonderful stories, the focus of this panel.
As we're learning, podcasting is both a mega-challenge and a huge opportunity for the radio broadcasting industry. But it will require expertise, learning, research, and investment to pull it off.
My hope for our “Broadcasters Meet Podcasters” agenda? That I'm able to get away from the details over these two days to sit down, take notes, and learn a lot about where this medium is headed.
I hope you're there to experience it as well.
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