Back in 2004, years before iPhones hit the market, some smart techy types (one of them a famous MTV VJ from the 80’s) came up with a way to distribute audio files as if they were blog posts. Yep, it’s now called podcasting.
It didn’t take long for podcasters to start looking for ways to make money from the work they were doing. Advertising seemed like the logical model, but there were two big problems:
- There wasn’t a clear way for podcasters and advertisers to find each other, and
- There wasn’t a way to measure podcast audiences -- so no way to determine the value to advertisers of any given podcast
Without these two integral services podcast advertising would just never reach any type of scale. In 2005, Podtrac Inc launched with the mission of solving these two problems and began offering podcast ad sales and podcast measurement services. Over the next ten years, hundreds of advertisers and tens of thousands of podcasts turned to Podtrac for podcast advertising campaigns and the data they needed to understand podcast audiences.
Beginning in 2015, the podcast advertising industry began growing rapidly. More advertisers became interested in podcasting and these new advertisers were not always sure where to turn for reliable information to know if podcasts were right for them or which podcasts might be right for them.
- On one hand they needed independent, open measurement along with demographics to understand podcast audiences.
- On the other, they needed expertise in running podcast ad campaigns
In response, Podtrac Inc divided its offerings into two separate services:
Podtrac for independent audience measurement and analytics, and
Authentic for podcast advertising services.
As of May 2016, Podtrac is 100% focused on podcast analytics and provides the data and context advertisers and publishers need to understand podcast audiences. Also beginning in May 2016, Podtrac began publishing the first-ever comprehensive podcast industry ranking with the goal of making the same types of reports and data that have been available for display advertising and other types of digital media for years available for podcasts.
Authentic is now the Podtrac Inc brand focused on leveraging Podtrac’s more than 10 years of podcast advertising experience. Authentic's mission is to ensure successful ad campaigns for its partner advertisers and podcasters.
2016 and beyond will be exciting times for the podcast industry and Podtrac Inc will continue to grow and change to support whatever comes.