Spotify is launching its first branded original podcast series today in partnership with New Amsterdam Vodka.
“Just as we do with music, we see podcast as another avenue to connect our advertising partners with audiences and, through our deep understanding of our users, help brands show up in the right way,” said Rob Walker, global director, creative solutions at Spotify, in a statement.
The podcast, called “Ebb & Flow,” features conversations between music influencer, DJ and New Amsterdam Vodka ambassador Jasmine Solano, and popular hip-hop and R&B artists.
Guests will include GASHI, Bryce Vine, Saweetie, J.I.D. and Skizzy Mars, in which they’ll swap stories, share their experiences and tell how they worked their way up in the music industry.
The podcast is part of the vodka company’s “Pour Your Soul Out” campaign and has recipes (using New Amsterdam Vodka, of course) at the end of the episodes.
“We chose to do a branded podcast less because of the format and more because of the opportunity with Spotify,” said Michael Sachs, director of marketing for New Amsterdam Spirits, in a statement. “When discussing ways to work together, we wanted to be sure that we were supporting the latest and greatest that Spotify has to offer.”
Like Spotify, it’s also New Amsterdam Vodka’s first venture in the branded podcast space.
“We’ve been monitoring the podcast space for quite some time given the significant growth in listenership among our target consumer and opportunity for deeper brand/message integration,” Sachs said.
“Ebb & Flow” is not Spotify’s first original podcast, though. It launched 3 Girls, 1 Keith and plans on adding more this year, Walker said.
The number of podcast listeners continues to rise. In 2017, 40 percent of Americans 12 and older said they had listened to a podcast before, up four percentage points in a year. And 24 percent said they had done so in the past month, an increase of three percentage points from the year prior, according to the Pew Research Center.
And branded podcasts, such as Gimlet Media’s popular, instructive tooth-brushing podcast called Chompers, have served as an opportunity to grow revenue beyond a typical ad read during a regularly programmed podcast by a host or a third party.
“Digital audio advertising and the popularity of podcasts are showing no signs of slowing down. And today, with the ubiquity of connected devices and smart speakers, a high percentage of content is consumed through audio,” Walker said. “Podcasts are huge part of that listening.”
Producers: Kait Walsh, Andrew Chugg, Whitney Donaldson, Dan Rosato
Production Company: Spotify, Gilded Audio Design
Creative Solutions: Neal Murray
Client Services: Mallory Rynish
Host: Jasmine Solano
Production Assistant: Dess Kirya