LOS ANGELES, California: By 2024, podcasting is expected to become a $4 billion industry.
Ahead of the Podcast Upfronts, the Interactive Advertising Bureau and PricewaterhouseCoopers released their annual joint report on the podcasting business, which predicted that the industry will generate $2 billion in revenue this year and $4 billion by 2024.
According to executives at IAB, that growth is not only due to the number of podcasts and the amount of time people spend listening to podcasts, it will also come from advances in advertising technology that allow advertisers to better target audiences and encourages them to spend more money.
This technology can now target listeners based upon location, age and gender, and advertisers can now more effectively track whether their spots influenced listeners.
Therefore, advertisers can spend more money if they are seeing better results, and podcasters can more effectively monetize their back catalogs by allowing them to place new ads in old episodes.
"The value is not just from an advertiser perspective, it is also from a creator perspective," said Eric John, vice president of the IAB Media Center, as quoted by theverge.com.
While the idea that podcast advertisements will be more closely tracking listeners may make some people uncomfortable, that increasing advertising money is seen as necessary for the industry's growth.
Meanwhile, Audacy predicts a 37 percent growth in podcasting, which is still a relatively small portion of its business model.
Audacy CFO Richard Schmaeling highlighted the IAB/PwC's prediction that the podcast industry will grow by 47 percent in the next year.
Suave, a seven-part podcast produced by Maria Hinojosa's Futuro Media and PRX, which follows three decades in the life of a man sentenced to life in prison as a juvenile, won the Pulitzer Prize in Audio Reporting, winning over competitors from NPR and NBC News.
In a statement, Hinojosa said, "When I heard the news that Suave won the Pulitzer Prize, I felt like a tectonic shift happened. The Suave podcast was always scrappy from the start. Never in my life did I think we could win a Pulitzer. I think that's the reason we won."
PRX recently deepened its relations with Futuro, agreeing to a distribution deal in February for podcasts, such as Latino Rebels Radio and Hinojosa-helmed "In The Thick."