Podcast Movement 2018 is officially a wrap. Three days of great sessions, lots of networking, and camaraderie in the City of Brotherly Love. By far, this was the biggest Podcast Movement of them all – more than 2,500 were in attendance and the meeting rooms were often SRO.
And Jacobs Media's “Broadcasters Meet Podcasters” track continued to grow. I did a wrapup with Podcast Movement co-founder, Dan Franks, over the weekend. As he joked, the only radio people at their Ft. Worth conference in 2015 were Steve Goldstein and our Seth Resler.
The next year in Chicago, Podcast Movement comped us a dozen or so passes, and we were able to convince a curious group of radio execs to attend. And last year's Anaheim conference packed well more than 100 radio broadcasters in our meeting room for our “Broadcasters Meet Podcasters” event.
Last week in Philly, we had two days and 10 sessions as part of our effort to bring the podcast and radio broadcast communities together. Dan estimates well more than 200 broadcast radio people were in the house. I scanned the attendee list, and saw many, many radio related companies, vendors, and other players representing research, tech, marketing, syndication, and other adjunct business that serve radio. I think it was closer to 300.
Our mission: to bring radio pros together with podcasters at this amazing gathering mirrors our similar efforts over the past decade. We've enjoyed touring broadcast executives around CES the last few years, and our DASH Conferences elevated the automotive opportunities – and challenges – connecting the radio and automotive industries.
Podcasting is a medium or platform (take your pick) that continues to grow, in terms of consumer usage, advertiser support,, and cultural influence. As studies like our Techsurveys have pointed out, the podcasting tent has expanded every year, sending a powerful message to broadcast radio executives about the paramount importance of carving out viable strategies in the space.
We broke some new ground in our “Broadcasters Meet Podcasters” sessions this year. I was fortunate to interview the always insightful and charming Jarl Mohn, CEO of NPR. We also were the only track to feature a session on smart speakers (“Alexa, play me a podcast”), led by Amplfi Media's Steve Goldstein, as well as a great – and necessary – session about laws governing podcasts, featuring radio's attorney, David Oxenford.
Our “Podcast Makeover” session has become a benchmark, moderated by Jacobs Media's Seth Resler, and featuring WMMR's Steve Morrison and Marisa Magnatto, PRX's Kerri Hoffman, and Panoply's Kristen Meinzer. We find two fledgling podcasters who want to be coached, and conduct a live aircheck.
In many ways, it typifies the overall vibe at Podcast Movement. As Hubbard programmer Jay Kruz (a first-timer at this event) pointed out to me, this is a conference where generosity is on display. Podcasters want to help each other grow. Unlike the dog-eat-dog vibe in commercial broadcasting, where everyone is congenial, but guarded, podcasters realize all boats rise when they lend a hand – or an ear.
A great “Corner Office” panel comprised of powerful, smart women in media kicked off the second day, featuring Beasley's Caroline Beasley, Westwood One's Suzanne Grimes, Hubbard's Ginny Morris, and Premiere Network's Julie Talbott. That session was moderated by a smart, inquisitive podcaster, Libsyn's Elsie Escobar.
As fellow podcaster, Karin Hoegh, mentioned to me, “Elsie Escobar is the image of how we learn to do things: By doing it!” Elsie is indeed a rock star, and got her message across to these broadcast execs the importance of getting into the game.
I personally spoke to many people over these past few months about the benefits of showing up and learning at Podcast Movement. I tried to describe the palpable sense of energy and buzz at this conference. But until you go there, you don't know just how fun, exciting, and captivating it is.
So, I combed through our notes, tweets, and cocktail napkin scraps we aggregated from our “Broadcasters Meet Podcasters” sessions to give you a flavor of this event. If I missed one of your best quotes or a quip or one-liner you heard at the conference, you can leave your comment below.
We appreciate our great group of speakers, panelists, and keynoters from the worlds of podcasting, as well as commercial and public radio, along with the hundreds of enthusiastic people who attended, took copious notes, asked great questions, and will now take that knowledge back to their teams, stations, and organizations.
To answer the obvious question, Jacobs Media will most definitely be back at #PM19 in Orlando next summer. That's your invitation to join us.
Here's what we heard at Podcast Movement in Philly:
“This is like the NAB Show in 1990 with the level of energy, enthusiasm, and creativity.” – Sounds That Brands' Dave Beasing
“Our strategy is to be clear-eyed and open-minded.” – Hubbard Radio's Ginny Morris on podcasting
“We're in the sandbox right now.” – Spoken Layer's Will Mayo on smart speakers
“I liked the fact there was a lot of fish sex in your podcast.” – Panoply's Kristen Meinzer on the “Fish Nerds” podcast
“The emphasis on storytelling is the most important thing.” – NPR's Jarl Mohn
“I'm programming everything to the phones.” – Premiere Networks' Bobby Bones
— Steven Goldstein (@sjgoldstein) July 25, 2018
“We need more podcasts (to sell). Universally.” – Ad Results' Marshall Williams
“We want to learn from podcasters because you are successful at what you're doing.” – Beasley Media's Caroline Beasley
“Alexa is not that smart.” – jacapps' Bob Kernen
“I first became interested in podcasting when my college-age son started listening to podcasts in the morning – not radio.” – Hubbard Radio's Ginny Morris
“With radio, listeners will give you time to settle in and find the sweet spot. With a podcast, you have to grab them from the beginning.” – Westwood One's Greg “Opie” Hughes
“We have these massive promotional platforms. We have sellers who are interested in monetization. Together it seems like it could be an excellent formula to write the next chapter in podcasting.” – Westwood One's Suzanne Grimes
“You have kids.” – NPR's Meg Godthwaite on how to keep up with technology
“If you like radio because it's intimate, podcasts are 10x.” – ABC Radio's Brad Mielke
— Dave Beasing (@DaveBeasing) July 25, 2018
“There's no FCC. There's not a lot of law. There are no lawsuits because you aren't making a lot of money. No money, no lawsuits.” – Wilkinson Barker Knauer attorney David Oxenford on podcast regulation
“There's a big market for MilMos – Millennial Moms.” Gimlet's Anna Sullivan
“Our dreams are strong. Our passion is strong. Our mission is strong. But there's sometimes a disconnect between the listening experience and the promotion.” Libsyn's Elsie Escobar
“I have a girl crush on you.” – Beasley Media's Caroline Beasley to Elsie Escobar
“Podcasting is a gateway drug to NPR.” – NPR's Jarl Mohn
“We have AM stations, we have FM stations, (and) podcasting is the other ‘M.'” – Hubbard Media's Greg Strassell
“Podcasts are redefining what we're about.” – Beasley Media's Buzz Knight on podcast brand extension by personalities and shows
“The only way radio salespeople can sell podcasts is if they consume podcasts.” – National Public Media's Bryan Moffett
We can all make better #podcasts. Podcast Makeover: Broadcast Pros Critique Upcoming Podcasts. Thanks @jacobsmedia for doing this #PM18 @sethresler @kerriprx @kristenmeinzer @mor100 @MarisaMagnatta on this panel. Helpful advice! pic.twitter.com/iBFNXzr8qt
— Richard Davies (@DaviesNow) July 26, 2018
“(Podcasting) isn't an audience shift; it's audience addition.” – Beasley Media's Justin Chase
“Structure is your friend.” Gimlet's Kristen Meinzer
“(Unlike in radio) you don't have to speak in ALL CAPS on a podcast.” – Bonneville's Sheryl Worsley
“As we became Panoply, we wanted to blaze new paths. For us, we think about three circles that overlap: editorial, audience and monetization.” – Panoply's Brendan Monaghan
“You need 10 people to listen (to your podcast) before you get 100 to listen.” – Premiere Networks' Bobby Bones on the importance of “baby steps”
“Tell WHO your podcast is for and WHY they need it in the first 30 secs.” – WMMR's Steve Morrison
— Jacobs Media (@jacobsmedia) July 25, 2018
Thanks to our great title sponsor, Beasley Media Group, as well as Westwood One and Panoply for their support of “Broadcasters Meets Podcasters.” And our partners, Podcast Movement co-founder Dan Franks and Jared Easley.
If you attended, we'd love to hear your “take” on the event, as well as your podcasting POV.
And here's a great two minute sizzle reel from Podcast Movement 2018 that captures the unique energy of this conference: