Inside Vox Media’s podcast strategy

Welcome! I'm Simon Owens and this is my tech and media newsletter. If you've received it then you either subscribed or someone forwarded it to you. If you fit into the latter camp, then you can subscribe over here. Or just click on this handy little button:

In this week’s issue, I dive deep into the metrics for newsletters that leverage machine learning to offer up personalized recommendations. As it turns out, they can drive a lot more engagement than human-edited newsletters. I also interviewed the guy who runs strategy for Vox Media’s 150 podcasts. Let’s jump right into it...

The rise of the smart newsletter

While the email newsletter dates back to the 90s as a mode of distribution, this doesn’t mean publishers aren’t continuing to develop new innovations with the medium. In fact, news outlets are constantly experimenting with editorial formats, design interfaces, and machine learning algorithms to derive more and more value from their email operations. [link]

Inside Vox Media’s podcast strategy

I recently sat down with Marty Moe, the head of Vox Media Studios, to talk about how the company is monetizing its podcasts, what he thinks about Spotify’s entry into podcasting, and why he thinks he can grow Vox’s podcast revenue from eight to nine figures. [link]

Want to interact with me directly?

I have a secret Facebook group that’s only promoted to subscribers of this newsletter. I try to post exclusive commentary to it every day and have regular discussions with its members about the tech/media space. Go here to join. [link]

Other news:

So much mobile video viewing happens when people are sitting on the toilet or standing line or doing anything that requires passing time. Given this, are people really going to pay for a mobile video experience? I'm skeptical. [link]

A really fascinating breakdown of how much each major music streaming service pays out to music creators per stream. [link]

Roku expects to hit $1 billion in revenue this year, but what's more interesting is that two-thirds of that revenue will come from advertising within its free streaming app. [link]

INTERESTING: Substack, a newsletter platform that allows independent writers to charge for newsletter subscriptions, launched a Reddit-like discussion thread feature. [link]


Do you like this newsletter? Could you do me a favor and recommend it to your social media followers? Here, I've even created some sample language for you to use:

I've really been enjoying @simonowens' tech and media newsletter