Spotify dominates podcast listeners:

For the first time, Spotify’s US podcast listenership will overtake Apple Podcasts’, according to eMarketer’s latest forecast. This year, 28.2 million people will listen to podcasts on Spotify at least monthly, while 28.0 million will listen via Apple Podcasts. Reports are that the Swedish-based company has experienced significant growth in the past few months. 

This is a major achievement for Spotify who has dump significant money into its podcast services over the past few years. Spotify’s podcast library has been bolstered by high-profile deals like its acquisitions of Gimlet Media, Anchor, Parcast and the Ringer and investors are finally seeing some profit. 

Spotify is expected to widen the gap between them and Apple in the next two years, increasing their lead by almost 10 million by 2023. Spotify looks to take a stronghold on podcasts due to the trends of how Americans listen to audio content. Podcast listeners will account for 53.9% of monthly digital audio listeners, surpassing 50% for the first time, eMarketer says. This will help Spotify edge out Apple in the podcast department especially with the set up of their apps. 

Some experts believe that Apple has two separate apps for their podcast and music is hurting crossover potential with the company. Last month, Spotify credited popular podcasts with a 24% growth in subscriptions. 

“We are confident that podcast usage has been a factor in the accelerated net additions. We have increasing conviction in the causal relationship between growth in podcast consumption driving higher [value] and retention among our user base.”

Daniel Ek,  founder, and chief executive of Spotify

Apple is attempting to make up the gap with receive original products such as “For All Mankind” and  “The Zane Lowe Interview Series” but most of the company’s focus has been geared towards Apple TV plus content. This action may cost Apple a significant amount of revenue. 

Advertisers have been slowly trickling into the audio space. Reports are that over  $1 billion will be spent on podcast advertising for the first time ever in 2021. Podcast advertising is continuing to gain a share of total digital audio ad spending, representing 24.0% in 2021. This is the worst time for Apple to lose out to Spotify as they have lost almost 12% of audio listeners since 2018. 

The two content titans will battle it out for audio supremacy for years to come, but at the moment, Spotify has taken a slight lead in the arms race that is audio listeners. Make sure to follow OPP news for the latest in the podcast industry.

Pod Bless

Justin Richards

Staff Writer

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