Sounds Smart Dublin kicked off on a beautiful morning in the capital on May 14th. The first joint event hosted by Acast and AudioOne graced the Lighthouse Cinema to a crowd of 135 people eager to learn more about the growing world of podcasting.
Sophie Herdman – the content director for the UK & Ireland – a self-proclaimed podcast geek, heralded the inclusion of Marc Maron’s podcast on an episode of The Simpsons as the moment podcasts were fully cemented in the mainstream. After the success of the 2014 murder investigation podcast Serial, podcasts veered from their previous mid-noughties male and comedy orientated medium to popularity with the series introducing many people to podcasting for the first time. Sophie also explained how podcasts appeal across a variety of ages but are primarily reaching the under 50s with 81% of listeners falling between 18 to 44 years old.
Next up, the real podcasting talent hit the Sounds Smart stage. Jennifer Dollard of Acast was joined by Caroline Foran – author of the best-selling book Owning It which subsequently turned into the podcast ‘Owning It: The Anxiety Podcast’ and stand-up comedians with 5 no.1 singles and a hugely successful podcast – The 2 Johnnies. Everything was up for discussion regarding their podcasts – why they love what they do, what the future holds for their respective shows and especially their favourite podcast memory.
Caroline’s favourite podcast memory included developing a closer bond with her brother after he appeared as a guest to speak about his own issues regarding his childhood stammer. ‘Real Time Rescue for a Panic Attack’ is an episode that people revisit time and time again and has resulted in an outpouring of thanks to Caroline for the help she’s given people.
The 2 Johnnies have gotten the opportunity to travel around the country with live comedy shows with much of the audience coming from their 80,000+ podcast listeners developed in the last year. However receiving a personal video message of support from Garth Brooks tops the list as their favourite moment.
Acast’s Managing Director for the UK and Ireland, Joe Copeman rounded off the session by explaining what advertising opportunities are available within podcasting. From personalised ads, to contextual, long form, sequential and audio takeovers there’s a huge range to suit your audience. Host read sponsorship’s offer a real personal, creative touch which was highlighted with hilarious sponsorship examples from Adam Buxton, Blindboy and My Dad Wrote a Porno. After Joe’s personal podcast recommendations (Disgraceland and Gossipmongers – if you were wondering!) an informative Q&A with the audience finished up the event.
As the number 1 trending topic in Ireland for the morning, it’s clear that the message of the success of Podcasts have been heard far and wide. Sounds Smart Dublin was all about opening up minds to the possibilities and opportunities available with podcasting and embracing the untapped market.
Our Twitter competition for Apple Airpods was in full swing throughout the workshop and the winning response was declared ‘’ The Future of Podcasting is bright because … nothing surpasses the light inside our heads.’’
They’re right – nothing does.