There is no question that 2020 was a tough year for the news publishing industry as a whole as many media companies learned to adapt and downsize in order to maintain profitability. However the challenges of last year also help accelerate the adoption of new forms of technology that can help expand audience and revenue cost-effectively. Automation is the key to growing into new multimedia channels, like audio podcasting.
Many publishers have found it difficult to justify expanding into the audio podcast market because of the time and costs required to manually produce one consistently.
However, if the creation of a local news podcast could be completely automated, then there is suddenly room for profit.
One company that stands at the forefront of providing these audio automation systems is Our Hometown, Inc, that today provides over 200 news publishers with digital platforms that require very few internal resources, so even small operations, with lean support teams can provide world-class digital solutions. Some of the latest cost savings systems being deployed by Our Hometown include:
- Audio Articles - Automated text-to-speech transcription which instantly creates professionally delivered voice versions of any online content.
- BuzzSprout API - Automatically upload all Audio Articles to Apple/Android Podcast Apps.
- Audio Advertising - Pre roll audio ads or Sponsored Content feeds into podcast playlist.
- Third-party podcast automation - Create a podcast from any CMS with Our Hometown's text-to-podcast system.
These audio automation tools were first embraced by Guy Roginson, executive editor of SignalsAZ.com. Guy saw the opportunity in the podcast space for local news and was the first publisher to adopt the Audio Articles technology on his website. He quickly sold sponsorship on the feature and helped develop the monetization model, which integrated "Audio Ads" into the beginning of each Audio Article.
Another innovator that has monetized audio content in creative ways is Director of Operations Kristen Weaver, at the Wilson County (Texas) News. With her approach, an "Audio Ad" is sold in a package with "Facebook Live" sponsorship. Kristen was also the first to implement the BuzzSprout API, which fully automates the publishing of every Audio Article as a podcast episode across all major podcast apps.
Learn how these two media companies increased audience and revenue leveraging the latest technology in audio automation.