2019 Mega-Conference

Podcasting trends, opportunities and best practices

Laura Rich, Hans Appen and Jim Prather
Laura Rich, Hans Appen and Jim Prather

Podcasting has been around for more than a decade but has seen explosive growth the last few years as smartphones and smart speakers have become ubiquitous media devices. Podcast ad revenue has nearly doubled in the last two years to $314 million since 2017, according to the Interactive Advertising Bureau, which projects revenue to double again by 2020.  

If this content distribution channel is not in your strategic plan, maybe one of the Tuesday morning breakout sessions at the Mega-Conference will change your mind.

Laura Rich, host of The Exit Club, a podcast about entrepreneurs, and founder of The Podcasting Agency, which develops engaging audio content for marketers, will lead a panel that will discuss best practices in podcast marketing, from content and distribution to technology and advertising options.

Joining her will be Hans Appen, president of Appen Media Group in Alpharetta, Ga., and Jay Prather, executive director digital programming for the Las Vegas (Nev.) Review-Journal.

She said this session will feature local media case studies and explore ideas on the spot.

Appen encourages publishers to attend this session to "find out how a traditional print media company can leverage its existing assets to add revenue from podcasting to its current business model with little up front costs or time commitment."

Prather says future success for publishers "will be tied to the creation of multi-platform content." He said, "Podcasting can be a huge showcase for your talent and your brand. The window is open for creative content creation and an opportunity to reach a younger audience."

Rich said, "Attendees will leave with a framework for how to think about a podcast strategy for their market."

Rich has focused on local media for the last eight years as the founder of Street Fight, a local media industry publication, and previously worked as a journalist for Inc., Fast Company, New York Times, Condé Nast Portfolio and others.

Appen graduated from the University of Georgia with a B.B.A. in economics from the Terry College of Business.  He joined Appen Media Group (AMG), a family-owned multi-media company, in May of 2011. He was promoted to president overseeing all operations in August of 2013. In 2018 he launched the Appen Podcast Network, a division of AMG comprised of 15 different podcast channels. 

Prather supervises the digital news, audio and video operations for the Review-Journal, which includes video and podcast studios. The Review-Journal is the dominant digital source for news in Nevada. He worked 25 years for Journal Broadcast Group, starting as news director at WTMJ-TV in Milwaukee and eventually moving to VP/GM and later corporate roles. He moved to Las Vegas in 2003 to supervise KTNV-TV in Las Vegas as well as regional responsibilities with JBG radio and TV stations.

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