Wisebuddah’s head of business development, Josh Adley, on why a companion podcast is the perfect partner for TV shows

The UK has been revelling in the heat, spurred on by our successes in The World Cup and the return of Love Island. A year ago, it was unthinkable for England to have made the semi-finals – and even more ridiculous to imagine The World Cup and Love Island battling it out for audiences and Love Island winning.  It was in the podcast chart, the barometer of those with the most devoted followers, that Love Island, not the World cup, came out on top.

Love Island’s high-rating performance is one thing, but its engagement with the elusive 16-34 year-old audience has been most applauded.  Its use of podcasting was inspired  – around two thirds of podcast listeners are aged 16-34.

Audience retention and growth are at the heart of why you should use podcasting as a series’ companion.  The stats are truly impressive. 23% of the UK population has listened to a podcast in the last month, with 93% of the audience staying to the end of the show.  There might be over ½ million active podcasts on the Apple app alone, but this isn’t a crowded market.  It’s a market where quality content rises to the top, where those who understand the medium are really standing out.

To succeed, podcasting’s  connection with its audience has to be almost unbreakable – and that’s certainly been the case with Love Island.  The fan, the expert, the guru, the connoisseur, step forward.  They are your podcast audience.  They want to find out more about your show – more than anyone else – and absorb content while your show is not on air. 

Whilst providing immense value in extending the brand of existing TV shows, this isn’t the only area in which podcasting and the TV world are coming together.   In the USA, great ideas have been originated in podcasting, with successful podcasts including “Homecoming”, “Lore” and “2 Dope Queens” have been picked up by giant TV studios (Amazon, HBO), for major TV commissions.  The opportunity is there for the taking.

Using a podcast to develop ideas can be a fantastic tool to trial creative formats, ambitious scripts and new talent. For years, TV panel shows and comedies have been nurtured on radio, from “Monty Python” to “The Mighty Boosh”.   Podcasting is an even easier route to getting big ideas off the ground.  That piece of IP which you are developing – or another that was left on the shelf – might be perfect for audio-on-demand.  If successful, it could ultimately find its way onto the screen. Wisebuddah is working with TV producers to develop ideas in this way, across all genres – from comedy, sport and true-crime, through to reality TV, gameshows and scripted dramas. With experience across audio production and TV too, our team are uniquely placed to understand this new opportunity.

Those people you see on the train with their headphones on might be nodding along to the latest Drake record.  More likely, they are listening to post-match analysis,  finding out about Gemma Collins’ sex tape or trying to decide if ‘he’ really did do it.  The worlds of TV and podcasting have started to flirt; soon they’ll have re-coupled by the firepit.  Will you be there too?

Staff Reporter

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