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HT Media launches first programmatic podcast marketplace with AdsWizz

HT Media Ltd. has partnered with AdsWizz to create India’s first programmatic podcast marketplace. 

This strategic relationship enables brands to access millions of listeners in India with real-time buying and selling of podcast advertising. Named “FabX”, this is the newest addition to HT media’s vast offering. 

Podcast advertising is still at a nascent stage in India. Among the choices one has in podcasting, sponsored episodes and branded podcasts are the obvious options available to both publisher and advertiser, with Programmatic as a new avenue it is a win-win situation for the podcast industry in India. In a market that is fragmented with Subscription-based models and independent content selling, this move sets itself as a sure way of providing access to monetization avenues.

“Our partnership with Hindustan Times highlights the growing opportunities in this market,” says Patrick Roger, VP of New Markets, AdsWizz. “Our technology combines the power of programmatic advertising with the power of podcasts, enabling advertisers’ easy access to a highly engaged audience. Additionally, with our AI Transcription Technology, advertisers can ensure brand safety by only serving ads to podcast shows or episodes that have specific topics as a central theme.”This relationship will automate real-time buying, targeting, optimization, and reporting of podcast ad inventory. Advertisers will be able to choose their geography, time, and demographics as the content increases. What is more exciting is the fact that one of the biggest reasons why podcasts are making their space into the heart of the Indians is because the content is present in numerous languages. Local advertising too can be enabled via this platform. 

It is estimated that the number of listeners will rise to 170.6 million by 2023, and India’s music, radio and podcast market will double itself by 2023. The advent of programmatic advertising in podcasts opens doors to more brand communications spend towards the format as the audience grows.

“It is an exciting time for us and a proud moment, to make advertisers experience the power of an immersive medium like Podcasts.”Says Ramesh Menon, CEO, Fever Network and Next Radio Ltd.

“HT Smartcast is paving the way for advertisers to have higher efficiency and greater impact for their advertising bucks through Programmatic audio advertising that will be time-saving, targeted and data/analysis friendly and performance-oriented. Our focus now is to quickly scale this for the benefit of podcasters and advertisers alike and help them take advantage of a marketplace that can solve the monetization issue that the currently, fragmented medium, faces. We can now concentrate on  increasing the volume of new and engaging content and exploring the full potential of audio.”

Indian Podcasts are available in Hindi, English, Telugu, Tamil, Bengali, Kannada, Gujarati, Marathi, and other vernacular languages. This diversity increases engagement and promotes a larger attention span in podcasts. This learning is not only beneficial for advertisers, but for podcasters in India who are looking to create monetizable content. 

Podcasting is an independent, free-flowing medium but what it lacks, is a single channel of promotion that can give a podcast publisher, visibility, and monetary benefit. Understanding genre and response, demand for specific topics, and gauging interest is a discovery process that will be powered by the use of this platform.

HT Media plans to be for podcasters, what YouTube is to video creators. It believes that there is a podcaster hidden in every Indian that has a story to tell. It is enabling them with their podcast content-generating company HT Smartcast and partner companies like HubHopper. By the virtue of its legacy is enabling another medium of sharing voice. 

"Our endeavour since Hubhopper's inception has always been to democratize the creation and consumption of podcasts and audio content, by bringing all aspects of a creators journey from hosting, creation, editing, distribution, data insight, marketing, monetization and beyond under one roof.” Says Gautam Anand, Founder and CEO, HubHopper

“This recent integration with HT Media and Adswizz marks the inclusion of yet another integral and elusive piece of this puzzle by bringing programmatic advertising capability to all who choose to create via hubhopper."

This move welcomes audio content creators to join the bandwagon and utilize the relationship to their advantage. Platforms with original content or hosting and distribution platforms too can avail benefits by adding to the vast and diverse inventory.

What is on the horizon for advertisers is the world’s largest podcast content repository carrying podcasts in Indian languages and more. For podcast creators, this is a good time to experiment with content and bring out the niche and never spoken about content to capture the listener’s attention and discover for themselves, what podcasting is all about. 

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