iHeartMedia and Pushkin Industries, the podcasting company co-founded by author Malcolm Gladwell, are teaming up to make more podcasts. The companies announced a new, two-year partnership today, which involves iHeart selling all the ads for Pushkin’s ad-supported shows while also co-producing a new slate of shows. Pushkin, up until now, worked with Cadence13 to sell its ads.
In its release about the deal, Pushkin says iHeart will help it expand its reach, which makes sense given that iHeart says it’ll play Puskin podcasts over its more than 800 radio stations. That’s an audience Pushkin wouldn’t have been able to reach if not for a deal with the company.
Although this deal isn’t ground-breaking in the sense that Pushkin isn’t making its shows exclusive or going in-house, it still speaks to the broader competition for ad dollars in the podcasting space. Spotify, for example, not only signed an exclusive deal with Joe Rogan but successfully negotiated to be the podcast’s ad seller. The same goes for its shows with Michelle Obama and Kim Kardashian West. Of course, making successful shows in-house and owning the IP is one route to monetization, but selling ads is also an essential part of the business and one that can be done without having to outright buy a company.