Business models and futures on the Danish podcast market

A bit of research news: together with my colleague Thomas Spejlborg Sejersen, I have received 340,000 DKK from the Aller Foundation to research business models of the Danish podcast market and audiences’ willingness to pay for podcasts. It is a project we would have done anyway, but this funding means that we can “go big”. The Danish School of Media and Journalism has the press release.

There are more and more podcasts. More and more people listen to podcasts. And those that listen seem to listen more and more (with the important caveat that because of the covid19 pandemic, people spend less time on commuting and, as a consequence, less time on listening to podcasts). Leading actors such as Spotify (that signed Joe Rogan and acquired Gimlet Media) bet on podcast as a part of their futures, and a medium as popular as podcast should do well in a digital economy centered around attention. Some do, even in a small language community like Denmark. But for most actors in the market, there is still no sustainable business model.

Against this background, we aim at mapping the business models in play and explore possible avenues for podcasts to build sustainable futures.

The project runs through four stages: 1) a quantitative mapping of the business models of all Danish podcasts; 2) interviews with actors in the market; 3) interviews with audiences; and 4) a representative survey among audiences. Taken together, these different data sources will enable

The project starts now and ends formally with a public conference in January, 2022.

Disclaimer: the Aller Foundation is closely connected to Aller Media, which recently acquired the podcast production company Heartbeats. They obviously have more than a philantropic interest in the project. However, DMJX, Thomas, and I have complete freedom to shape the project, conduct the analyses, and publish the results as we see fit.