Weekly Column: The Growing Audio Audience

In his capacity as a Columnist for California Sports Lawyer®, Founder Jeremy Evans has written a column about the potential for growth in audio and podcast shows for the entertainment, media, and sports industries.

You can read the full column below.

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Radio was once the king of entertainment prior to the mass purchase of televisions in homes and the wider distribution of television and films. Cable, satellite, and streaming have only strengthened the power and influence of watching content for entertainment, media, or sports purposes. The beauty of radio, or audio, is that our imaginations are much bigger than anything we can see or read.

The future of content may again be a cousin of radio. Specifically, audio in the streaming variety. Why are podcasting and audio shows so popular?

First, podcasting and audio shows are relatively inexpensive to produce compared to film and television production especially if completed remotely. Second, audio productions have little to no limitations when it comes to scripting as outlines and conversations are the pursuit and what listeners want. Listeners want a conversation or story that is authentic to the storytellers and participants. Audio also opens up the talent pool because there are special talents in audio as there are in film and television with some crossover opportunities as well.

Audio also opens up A-list talent in Hollywood and sports to host podcasts and audio shows. It is similar to an actor going from features, to television, to Broadway. It also adds another revenue stream for talent, producers, and studios.

Audio also satisfies the ever-growing appetite for content, which film and television content have a more difficult time keeping up with because of production and cost constraints. Audio also increases the ways we can consume books via Audible or similar applications. A person might be more willing to listen to a book or podcast versus reading a book. The digital book and podcast also means less weight in your travel bags.

Audio is also perfectly-matched for the future of content consumption in that it can be easily streamed from a phone (and non-video audio shows do not require any visual consumption). People are more likely and in increasing fashion to consume content from their phones than anywhere else. People listening to the news or wanting to be entertained are increasingly likely to scroll through social media applications or YouTube for such content, not traditional television guides.

Hollywood studios can also take audio shows and turn them in feature film and television productions. Audio creates another steady stream for a library of content with a built-in treatment or script to start. An audio shows popularity or lack thereof can also help determine whether something might be successful or not in a film or television series. The additional analytical insight will help studio and streamer executives and creatives to determine whether a project might be worth pursuing beyond audio.

With news talent increasingly becoming A-list, audio and podcast offerings can be another avenue to tell stories. With streaming subscriptions becoming more competitive with increased platform competition, adding podcasting or audio shows will help keep revenues steady through advertising. Lastly, with Disney looking to bundles as a way to increase revenue and to satisfy consumer habits, podcasting and audio shows again could be a part of that offering especially where audio shows are originally created and owned by the studio or streamer. Indeed, it is looking that audio has a bright future in entertainment, media, and sports.

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About Jeremy M. Evans:  

Jeremy M. Evans is the Chief Entrepreneur Officer, Founder & Managing Attorney at California Sports Lawyer®, representing entertainment, media, and sports clientele in contractual, intellectual property, and dealmaking matters. Evans is an award-winning attorney and industry leader based in Los Angeles. He can be reached at Jeremy@CSLlegal.com. www.CSLlegal.com.

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Jeremy M. Evans is the CEO, Founder & Managing Attorney at California Sports Lawyer®, representing entertainment, media, and sports clientele and is licensed to practice law in California.