We had Matty Staudt back on the show in September of 2019 and he was heading up Jam Street Media after leaving iHeart as the head of podcasting.
In that episode we talked about his early podcast career with dates back to stitcher in 2008, how he produced the G. Gordon Liddy show, and played the hits on great radio stations across America… since then he has been building some of the best branded podcasts out there. and then came the news that jam street had been acquired by Amaze Media Labs. Cool! Matty is now the Chief Development Officer there and we caught up with him to talk about our two favourite subjects…. podcast and broadcast. this show was recorded using Streamyard and there’s a video version for those who like to consume their podcasts that way.
Thanks also to the people who make this show possible every week including:
We had maddy start on this show in September of 2019, when he was heading up Jam Street media after leaving I hard as head of podcasting.
In that episode, we talked about his early podcast career that dated back to stitcher in 2008.
How we produce the G. Gordon Liddy show and played the hits on great radio stations across America.
Since then, he's been building some of the best branded podcasts out there.
And then came the news that Jam Street media had been acquired by amazed media labs.
Maddie is now the chief development officer there, and we caught up with him to talk about our two favorite subjects, podcast and broadcast.
This show was recorded using stream yard and there's video evidence on the Internet that this conversation took place.
Maddie, by the way, is still in L.A.
Yeah, still in L.A.
Enjoying the weather.
Well, it's the best weather in the world now, isn't it?
It really is.
I I tell anybody who's got the naysayers of l.
I'm like, uh, you live here a few years and see what you say.
Yeah, And you're originally from West Virginia.
We got that in your back story.
And you're you're a big fan of the Mountaineers, is it?
Oh, yes, yes, yes.
Bad football team this year.
But, you know, as a as a West Virginia University fan, we we get excited for football.
And then halfway through the football season, we say, at least there's basketball.
Yeah, or that At least there's basketball phase and fandom.
Well, you turned you turned me on to the to the school.
Um, I guess it's because I probably your social media so I can follow along and see how the team is doing.
And I get the results every Saturday.
Mainly they haven't been all that good this year.
No, not this year.
The Record is better, though, for for your streak and podcasting.
And I think I had you on the show.
I'm going to guess 2019.
I should be able to research my own show, but I didn't even manage to do that.
Um, but you and I spoke to each other at podcast movement.
I guess that year and jam Street media was in the throes because you're about a year old or so and you have a lot of podcasts that you launched.
Um, and I must say, you look very stressed, So catch me up from there.
Tell me, Jam Street Media, sort of in the final year before the acquisition.
Um, stress was good.
I tell my tell my students that I feel like everybody young today.
They want to jump in and start their own company.
And I'm like, do your homework.
You know what you're going to do?
Um, you know, we we were hit by the pandemic like everybody.
You know, we've lost some clients, and and and then we just launched our network, and the network did really well, and we're still, you know, up and running, you know, deep cover the real Don Nebraska and Appalachian mysterious to and a life story are kind of our three main shows.
Now, that are they're doing well, but, uh, But when you start a company, you have to look for funding and you have to, uh, you know, pay people.
So, you know, towards the last few months, we were, um you know, we were making money, but just not enough, you know, And and And the funny was not looking good.
And that's when I got a call from a friend and I heart that said, You should talk to these guys at Amazing Media Labs and I said, I don't know who they are and he's like, Nobody does the brand new.
But I think you would work well with them And they had started this company, and I mean, they were selling podcast, uh, to some big brands and needed the production side of things.
So it worked out perfectly for our company to be absorbed by them and and And then the last year, it's just been amazing.
I mean, we're we've got almost 40 clients now that we're making podcasts for I mean, big names for Nissan, that cosmetics.
Um, just to print you know insurance companies.
Almost all of those seems like and a lot of pharmaceutical companies.
So but, yeah, that last year is tough.
I mean, it really is being an independent podcaster.
Today is really hard.
Um, because again, you can make the best podcasts in the world.
But if you don't have the money to do the promotion for them, it's really hard to get numbers that will actually get to a place where you're making, you know, making ends meet.
So if I'm to get this right and I've been doing this for six years now, It's hard to make podcasts, but then you have to spend 80% of the rest of your time marketing the podcast.
I mean, the marketing is so important, you know, if you're a Spotify and I hard or, you know, one of these other media companies, you know, it's really easy.
You just you just plug your promo s into your inventory that you already have, And there you go, Um, but for an independent, you know, you've got to get that.
You know, you have to get into that inventory, so you're gonna have to pay for it.
Um figure out some ways to swap, but nobody wants to swap when you're just starting out.
And you know you don't have a lot of downloads.
Um, we had a lot of luck with social media that we we we did.
We found a lot of ways to do guerilla marketing for our podcasts and and, you know, especially for deep cover.
That's the show.
We have a Joe Pistone.
We knew there's a fan base there.
We know there's people that are interested in the Mafia, and there's people that loves him and love them.
The movie, Um, but even that I mean, it was It took a while to get that one kind of up and going, uh, and then it finally start to get a life of its own.
But even, you know, even with that, like shoot a few more bucks in spending would have been a lot more helpful than trying to do it all, you know, from the ground up.
But you're still big into the promo swap that's good in a social media that's also that's also been very good.
But, you know, you ran the podcast division at I hard a few years ago.
And do you look back and sort of say, they've got a little bit easier because they've got more tools built inside their company?
Or I don't think it's easy for anybody.
And I think the bigger the company, there's just there's more things that come with it and and and you know it's, um you know, I heart has its own difficulties When you work for a bigger company, you've got more hoops to jump through and and different things to do.
But if I'm a podcaster and I have my podcast in the I Heart umbrella, yeah, you will get a lot more promotion and and you know And that's why people sign deals with with companies like I heard Spotify and and why independents like myself are usually looking to sell our shows to a wondering or an I heart or someone so that they will get the attention that they need.
Um, they get them out there.
I believe you had a sports property inside a jam street at one point, and yeah, and so I look at the sports properties for podcasting in a different light because, you know, you gotta get him listen to it a little bit of a faster cycle than you would some of the more evergreen stuff.
So do you treat it differently?
I mean, because it doesn't have I mean so yeah, because we had a really popular podcast with baseball pitcher Ross Stripling.
Um, and then he and his partner decided they didn't want to do the podcast every week anymore.
So, um, it went away.
If that was a normal podcast.
When it goes out of production, you still got all the back inventory.
You know, you can make it go.
I mean, you know, our first season of Donnie Brasco is still are most popular season people find it and they go and they start at the beginning and listen forward.
But with sports has done, you know, there's not many people going back to listen to an old episode of the sports podcast.
Um, so it really is.
It's a lot harder to do that.
I think that there's a lot more money going into sports.
Podcasting now, thanks to the betting companies, um, and everything, but it's definitely a lot tougher to, uh, you know, again, you know, they're there and then they're done.
I sort of try to explain to people from radio about podcasting.
I said, We'll try to think of podcasting as being a little bit more on demand and radio being alive.
But now I'm finding in podcasts that there's, you know, as much live content going into podcast as there is on demand content.
So is there a way for you to break that up for better ways to handle that?
Um, you know, I think that if you can create a mix of evergreen and not evergreen content, uh, that's the way to go.
I mean, you know, right now my focus is working with brands and with brands, you know, we get to make evergreen podcasts for the most part, and it's great because, you know, you can tell somebody you've now got.
You've now got a product that you can have on the shelf for years, and people will go back.
You can market them for years.
You can do whatever you want with them for years.
Um, where you know, with a live content, it's again.
It's it's it's You can't do that.
I mean, you can repackage like the interview So let's say we wanted to go back to all of the big swing that was my podcast and take all the interviews out and, like maybe repackaged just the interviews and put them out.
That would be one way we could do it.
But it's a lot of work for probably not a lot of payback.
Define a branded podcast because when I mentioned it, some people sort of their eyes glaze over and go, Well, what's that exactly?
Yeah, So I get that and and And basically just think about brain of podcast is a podcast that a brand presents, Um, and it backs up their values.
Um, let me give you a couple examples.
So for Amarin, probably a company you've not heard of their pharmaceutical company.
They make, um, they make heart mostly heart health medicine, and they're very much in that industry.
Um, the podcast is hosted by ex NFL player Ron Jaworski, and it's about men's heart health.
And we talked to doctors and nutritionists and and it's on the outside of it.
It's just a cool podcast About, you know, men's health.
Uh, but the brands paying for it, and as part of the brand's branding.
So, um, you know what they aren't is our commercial.
You know, they aren't.
Let's talk about our drugs for 30 minutes, you know, in fact, that's the last thing I'll tell a client to ever do.
It's like if you want to sell something, this is not the medium for you.
Um, you know, we do have one sports podcast.
We do it for bed.
Uh, and it's It's a comedian Yannis Pappas and Olivia Harlan Dekker, who's a sports journalist, and it is a really fun, cool podcast.
And there's a little betting segment at the end, and we might have a little betting talk in the front, but for the most part again, it's branding.
It's it's hey, bet MGM is a sports company.
And here's here's this great podcast with these great guests.
So, um, you know, they really are a reflection of the brand, Uh, and and a way for a brand to be in front of somebody for 30 minutes, you know, like that's a lot of your time to get from anybody, especially if you're a brand.
So, um and then you can, you know, you've got all that content.
You've got the video that you can take the transcripts and make blog posts.
A lot of content comes out of just one podcast for them.
Yeah, The tricks of the trade began to creep in, of course, which is going to have a solid website.
You wanted to be well hosted.
You want to have great metadata and and all the other stuff that that you've acquired over the years and and all those skills.
But now you get brands that come to you with an idea for a podcast.
It sounds to me like you're doing a little bit of casting like who's gonna be the person who is going to be the best host for this program development?
It depends, you know, Sometimes that's the case.
A lot of times the brands will have somebody internally, you know, they want to get some thought leadership out of it.
So that's when I'll put on my talent Coaching happened.
I'll work with them as as a talent coach.
Um, you know, it really is, um, you know, every clients a little bit different, but I think if I'm looking at my crystal ball, I think you'll see more brands getting into this space where they're branding themselves on a podcast that's maybe in production.
And it is existing or or again doing like we're doing like, Hey, we have this idea.
We want to do something about this.
Can you find us the talent and the guests and all of that?
And that's that's what we do for some of our clients and, um, and again and and they also will, you know, the other thing that they ask for is internal stuff.
You know, we do a few internal podcast for companies that are really big.
And it's a great way for the again the CEO to talk or the CMO to talk to the whole team without it being a webinar.
You know, the things that people people like me like I'm so sick of Zoom.
I sit here all freaking day looking at this computer.
Um, it's nice to put on headphones and get some information a different way.
I'm sorry I made you do this on on the internet, then.
No, it's okay.
I forgive you, Matt.
Okay, um tell me a little bit about, you know, getting getting when you get these podcasts together.
Um, and you put them out there?
I mean, you mentioned a little bit that they're in turn that you have an intern, that internal podcast and as well, you have some that may need some dynamic ad insertion and some that don't.
So do you host that in one particular place, or do you spread them around?
Um, you know, we keep everything on simple cast right now, but, um, but for the ones that want ads, you know, we we use megaphone.
Uh, I like that.
You know, I love simple cast for for a lot of reasons, but I really do love.
I think I think megaphones by far got the best add fuel system out of all of I've tried them all.
It really is.
I mean, it's it's tremendously increased our revenue of Jam Street, Um, by having access to that, so it really depends.
And and again, I mean, and, you know, some brands will have a podcast already, and then, you know, a lot of the times the folks have already started a podcast have had it done by some folks that work there, and they're all over the place with all their stuff.
So, you know, we like to clean everything up and make it pretty and put it back into one ft and get it going that way.
So here we are, a couple of former radio guys Who found their way over into podcasts.
And of course, you did some some dabbling before I believe it was a stitcher back in 2013.
Just correct me if I've got my 2008 is when I was one of the founding team of stitcher, so way back and then right back before the fact we were an app before there was an iPhone.
We we we came out the year before the iPhone Wow we had.
We had Rob Walsh from Lipson on a couple weeks ago and he was mentioning, You know, the podcast really have more in common with magazines.
Then they would radio, and I'm sort of listening to the way you're talking about a network and a collection of podcasts and group feels a little bit more like the music industry.
You know where you have, like musicians and labels, labels get signed, will sign the musicians, and then it's all about the marketing.
I mean, it is a lot like the music industry.
Um uh, in a way, I think that I think podcasting.
That's why you if you look at today's generation of executives, they're coming from TV and all these other places, Um, and not radio as much.
Uh, and it's because podcasts have become so multimedia.
You know, there there's video elements, everything we do, you know, we we make videos for social media.
Um, we, um you know, on the on the network side, on the jam street side, you know, we have i p rights to our podcast.
We're looking to sell the I P rights, if we can, to to our our current shows.
Um, uh, you know, the way the content is built is not like radio.
I mean, if you know again, I always tell everybody the roots are NPR, and you always go back to the roots.
And, you know, when you look at podcast, um, you know, back when Rob and I said, I mean, Rob and I was starting out at about the same time in podcasting.
Um, you know, they were all really long.
They were all about Mac computers.
I mean, all of our top podcasts and stitcher in the beginning were like, we're mak daily and, like, I mean, everything was tech because the only people listening to podcasts for, like, tech heads, uh, except for them, NPR started to get into it.
And people like, Oh, these are really good.
Let's just copy that and make that the podcast style and and we're still living with that today.
I mean, every moment, every podcast, you here has got some kind of NPR route.
If you think about it, as far as the style goes, has anybody made you a pitch?
And you today look back and say, Damn, we should have picked that up.
No, Uh, no.
I mean, not too much.
I mean, I've definitely had Oh, I had some crazy person come after me on Twitter because they said I told him not to start a crypto podcast a few years ago.
And I'm like, a few years ago probably should have started the crypto podcast, but I don't remember ever saying next, I never for me like I'm not the no guy like My thing is, if you're passionate about something don't do it and and yeah, and And I mean, that was, like me my career, like I wasn't, like, not supposed to, like, get out of hand and, like, get into talk radio.
And I didn't have a big enough voice to make it in the big markets.
And, you know, people told me all kinds of ships.
Um, so I always feel like, you know, if you're passionate about it, go do it.
What's the biggest marketing?
Oh, wow moment that you've had in the last guest a couple of years when you said, Oh, this works a lot better than I really thought it would.
You know, we have a podcast called a Life Story, and that podcast had, uh, no listeners.
And it's if the podcast is, we tell the stories of 80 and 90 year olds and, like, it's It's done by Leslie Gold, the radio chick from Worked with the W N.
And it's a beautiful podcast, and I now I had a friend of mine, Chris Criminal Dose or I would say his name.
He runs podcast.
Chris said, Hey, there's this podcast.
Uh, that has a very similar audience.
You should just try to buy some spots on it.
And we did.
And I've never seen numbers jump up like they did from the one set of ads we did on that one podcast.
And it really opened me up to, like, when you find the perfect podcast to promote your podcast on it makes all the difference.
Um, and that was a big one.
Um, you know, with our brands, we've been trying different, you know, things, uh, you know, with promoting with them and and, you know, one of the other ah ha.
Moments is just, you know, looking internally, Especially when you're working with the brand and what they have available.
And they might not know they have lots of channels available to promote their podcasts.
So, um, whenever you can discover those, it's pretty neat, too.
You mentioned earlier about the difficulties of starting a business and then paying people and everything that goes into it.
Um, tell me about some of the challenges that you had moving out of the office with covid and converting to work from home.
Well, we we were worked from home at Jam Street to begin with, so that worked out pretty good for us.
In fact, it's the only thing that really kept us in business for the fact that we had, um, you know, we launched as a we thought we were going to be doing branded.
I very quickly learned how important it is to have great salespeople.
I did not.
I thought I was going to go out and do all the sales, and I was not evidently not very good at it.
Um, you know, at least getting knocking on the doors.
I'm just That's not my thing.
Because now, amazed.
I've got the best sales staff I've ever seen in my life and there I mean, these these guys are good.
They they get us in front of everybody.
And once we're in front of people, that's when I can do what I do.
But if you can't get in front of anybody, you're not gonna I don't care how good your product is.
Um, so we learned that right away, Like that was for me.
That was big.
Like, I'll never do that again.
I'll never launch without a sales partner.
Um, and and I think as far as you know, the covid was good because at least with my team don't have any money to pay anybody for a while and And everybody was okay to work.
They just wanted to work, you know, We were all none of us want to sit at home doing nothing.
So it worked out.
But, you know, we did see at that point brands just like dropped there and everybody who we thought we were gonna have contracts with drop because they didn't know.
I mean, everybody was so scared last year at the beginning of the year, like what's What's what is going to happen.
Um, so, uh, that's changed a lot now, and I think it's been good.
I mean, overall covid has been pretty damn good for our business.
Like for all of us in podcasting, it's helped.
Awareness is up higher than it's ever been.
I mean, it's great.
I mean, when I see a show like only murders in the building and I'm like, Look how mainstream we are.
You know, Steve Martin and Martin short are doing a show about making a podcast.
I mean, he told me 15 years ago that would've happened.
I would've been like no way, man.
Nobody's I don't know if this will ever catch on.
Yeah, And you've lived in the two cities that I think would really sort of, you know, lend itself to podcasting.
You were in San Francisco at one point.
Now you're in Los Angeles, where it kind of feels I don't want to say there's a home base to it, but I see the numbers, and I would just think that everybody in Los Angeles just sits in their car to listen to podcasts and just drive around and get stuck in traffic.
I did that a lot during the pandemic.
To be honest with you, I would get my car to go because I like to listen in the car.
But I had nowhere to go, so I would come up with reasons to go to the store and I'd go to the store in the Valley, like to drive an hour just because it's fun, you know, wanted to catch up on slow burn or whatever I was listening to.
Um uh, this is a really good podcast listening town.
It's definitely I mean, in general, it's just kind of it is neat.
It's weird for me because, uh, when I talk to people about podcasting, you know, over the years, the different, you know, it's gone from I don't know what that is.
Is that a job?
What are the you're like, Why would I listen to those two?
Oh, they're really great.
I love them.
They're really hot and, you know, and I'm like, they're hot.
You know, when I hear that it's part of me this happy But part of me is like, Where were you people?
78 years ago?
And stitcher was just flailing, and we all had to, like, you know, figure it out.
But a different place now, Yeah.
So some of the technological advancements over the last few years are there any that have made you say, Oh, wow, that's that's finally come to fruition.
And it's a good thing there.
Well, I mean, connected cars has been the big one for podcasting.
Um, and the fact that everybody's got understands there's a podcast player on there, but not everybody may not say that.
You still gotta explain that to a lot of people.
But, you know, I've always said that the rise in podcasting has come with increased and better content, and and that's come because more people can listen because of the technology catching up.
You know, that was that was always the big thing.
Was just getting people to figure out how to listen to them.
And now everybody's got a car that's connected in some way, shape or form.
Nobody has problems streaming things onto their car.
Most cars have, and most of those units have Spotify built into them or apple.
You know, if you're using Apple Carplay podcast app is there as well.
It's just a lot easier for folks.
Both you and I have radio in the rear view mirror a little bit.
We'll always is it Is it ever really?
I always, you know, I always feel like, uh, Michael Corleone and they, you know, they keep pulling me back.
Uh, yeah, it's it's always in my blood.
I still I think that I think you might have time to when I was talking about dead air dreams.
You know, I still have a dream a month where I'm in a studio, and for some reason it's only carts and I there's nothing on the air and I don't know what to do.
I can't get anything on the air that was actually going to be my next question.
How do you know?
How many times a week or months?
Do you have a radio Dream?
I mean, at least two or 3 times a month.
And, uh, it was funny last weekend.
I actually saw my old host, Sarah.
Um and we were at a party for a another person.
I was on the morning show with, and it was the first time I've been back in the bay and in a group of people that were fans of the show.
Uh, and it was great.
You know, it's so much fun to have drunk people walk up to you and like, be gushy.
And I'm like, I haven't been on the air in, like, 12 years, but it's it's it's, you know, that's the thing about radio that, you know, when you're doing morning radio and you're doing talk radio, you really do create, like, really good fans.
And they really care about because they really know you because you you know, for me, like, you know, they heard me meet my wife.
They heard when I got married, they heard when I got my first dog and, uh, they yeah, it's really cool in just a second more with Matty as we discuss the value of selling out your show tracking stats, the passing of G.
And we get the Canadian stuff in there, too, as we talk about Quebec City, Chicoutimi and Rush.
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The sound of Podcast.
Do you have any advice for radio and integrating podcast into their ecosystem?
Well, I mean, my advice has always been the same, which is whatever you're doing.
Offered as a podcast first, don't give me this.
I'm worried about ratings.
It's It's going to help your ratings because then you're relevant, Um, and then creating other content.
You know, you know, companion content for your morning show after shows things like that.
Um, I think there's a lot.
And I would say Now the big thing is localizing.
You know, localized podcasts are another thing I would say are you know, more of like, that's the next thing is, you know, really focusing on, you know, micro audiences.
And when you're focused on, you know.
And that's the one thing that radio has always done well but doesn't do well now because of all the Unfortunately, it's there's not a lot of local talent left, so if you are local talent, you know, creating podcasts that are unique to your you know, your your ecosystem and own it.
Um, you know, don't worry about trying to do a national podcast.
You know, um, when I was working at I heart, you know, I worked a lot with Mojo in Detroit and Mojo we had I mean, we created an after show together, and his after show was, like, a million downloads a month.
I mean, huge numbers and mojo is only in Detroit, you know, and people who have left Detroit, uh, you know, but that's a that's that's huge.
You know, um, and again, it's just, you know, and that's not the biggest city in the world, you know, it's not like Detroit's, you know?
You know, the New York, you know, it is more unique because the talent there, so especially mojo, he's like the King of Detroit has been there forever, But, um, but yeah, I think it's it's it's important to do that.
I gave a presentation to some radio people last week and actually cited that particular podcast with Mojo as being an idea of something that you should probably do with your radio station.
and look what mojo does some bits here repurposed radio here and away you go.
Yeah, I mean, building a network.
I mean, that's what I did in my heart with the morning shows.
It's like you have your on demand stuff, creates some aftershow content, like your producers.
I mean, it's the other thing about it is it's now are.
It's really our farm system.
You know, Mojo, Son Joe is a great example.
I helped Joe start a podcast with two of his best friends, um, who are both in radio, uh, and and just told him, Treated like a morning show.
Workout bits do this than that.
And they did.
And guess what Now?
Joe's Rock and Tampa.
He's got his own morning show in Tampa.
Um, and and and he'll tell you the podcast was a big part of getting them that gig.
So because we just don't have, you know, they can't come up like I did.
There's no kids going into a radio station in West Virginia and begging for a job And getting one and going on the air when you're 17, like it just doesn't get to happen anymore, so you gotta you gotta figure out other ways to work your talent, out because um.
you know, it's just you don't get good at anything unless you do a lot of it and you get to be bad for a while.
And it's hard to be bad for a while if you're not getting that chance you mentioned about, you know, radio with the ability to be local.
Um, podcasting kind of sort of has a way to get in there with dynamic ad insertion or dynamic content.
Is that factor into any of your podcasts or your strategies?
I think it's gonna be a big part of of the strategies.
And I think, um, you know, as we're seeing the technology getting so that ads can be localized, um, or with dynamic insertion, uh, that will be, you know, a bigger thing.
Um, you know, most of the stuff we're working with is more nationally based, so it's not, uh, it's not something that we're looking at, but when we work with a company that has specific markets that they want to target in on, that's when you know we can turn on those those tools.
But also that's when It's good to have a good, uh, metric system, like simple cast and then are also, you know, a charitable right now.
I mean, the stuff you get from charitable is amazing there.
Those guys are just really doing a great job over there.
And you can get a lot of localized data from from your charitable links.
So somebody just a little bit more about charitable, because every time I was going through it, I thought, Oh, they're just aggregating all the stats that I already have access to.
But I seem to think it's a little deeper than that.
It's deeper than that now.
I mean, you've got to have enough downloads to get the stats, but it gets a lot more granular from them.
Um, they've just got a lot more services now.
I mean, they've they they've pretty much, if you can think of it.
They thought of it already, and they've got a stat for that for you.
So I definitely think it's, you know, and and and those things are great, you know?
They're universal links.
They work everywhere.
Um, you know, they're just great for tracking.
So, uh, I'm not doing I don't work for any of these companies.
By the way, none of them are giving me a kick back there.
Just cos I like to work with.
So I know I'm the same way.
When something works, I'll share it.
And I say, Hey, this works and this is why I like to use it.
I have only used charitable at a granular level, and some people have asked me to put some smart links in for cross promo s so that you can track and see how well the, you know, the promo is working on another podcast.
And, um, I can't speak to it because I only did it one time.
But I understand the technology and, um, and enjoy it.
Yeah, it's great.
And it's, you know, especially when you're working with brands and folks that really want a lot of that granular data.
So you do work with a lot of, you know, people who are asking you for stuff and you happen to be in podcasting, which is there's not a ton of attribution That goes back to hey, can we get like, 25, women who carry handbags and so on and so forth.
Um, is you want more attribution with data and stats or are you fine with what you have always want more?
You know, I tell this about content to You know, my big thing is I always look at completion rates to see how well I'm doing.
You know that people listen to the whole thing, you know?
That's why, like with Donnie Brasco with a deep cover, I knew we had to hit podcast because it was 95% completion rates.
I mean consistently.
So I was like, Okay, this is good.
We're doing that right.
And that's when you know you can start turning up the other stuff.
Um, and I always tell I tell folks when I talk to them that your friends will lie to you, but metrics won't, um, you know, you may have 10 friends in one city that say your podcast is big here.
The metrics say it's not big there, but you're 10 friends.
They they like it.
But, um, in the same thing with like, your podcast isn't long enough.
Yes, it is.
I look at my completion rates and in fact, it's too long I'm going to cut it down a bit.
So you know, the more metrics, the more attribution you can get it.
It's always good, and we're totally headed in that direction.
I mean, it's there's so many comedies focus on that right now.
So with that said, um, I have forgotten my next question that I had ready it just fell out of my head.
This is what happens when you go like that.
I thought you were an old radio guy.
You're supposed to have stuff in your back pocket.
Yeah, But we we sort of past the 30 minute mark, and that's kind of like, you know, that's okay.
It's normally in radio.
I would I would have broke for commercials at this point.
All right, wrap me up or, you know, uh hey, I got a question for you, actually.
Hear what Here was a question about, Okay.
So it's About completion rates.
What is a good completion rate that you can be satisfied with?
I have mine at 75-80%.
I mean, you know, I tell I tell most folks 60% and higher is is good, you know, don't don't freak out about anything.
You know, under 60, you gotta start looking at what you're doing a little bit, but yeah, that's 60% is it's pretty common and and especially with you, no longer form talk stuff.
And those in radio who are wondering what the completion rate is.
Think of it as time spent listening.
It is exactly time spent listening.
And I that was the kind of shows I worked on.
And when Nielsen changed, uh, smart, uh, to the to the meters, that's that killed our kind of radio because we lived on time spent listening and not cute.
So what are you gonna do?
And so I guess if you're familiar with Nielsen, I guess that's why you would enjoy, you know, being on megaphone because I think they've got some integrations, don't they?
Uh, they might I don't know.
I mean, I I was Nielsen was, uh, you know, as a radio per person, you know, you have a very much a love hate relationship with Nielsen, but they've really done some good stuff in the podcasting space lately.
So, um, as they should, you know, that's that's where they need to be.
Now I'll entertain your question.
Now, uh, my question to you was how are Canadian radio folks in the United States right now?
We don't have a lot of local talent left, you know, there's fewer opportunities.
Is that the case in Canada now as well, Or does Canada still pretty good about keeping the radio stations on and keeping them alive?
Um, it's relatively the same as the US, just a little bit different.
So you look at the root causes of of why radio staff would disappear.
If you're no, I hire you probably convert some of that over into podcast or some other toys in the company were all in Canada.
We've got to phone companies, um, that are, you know, they need to sell telephones and they'll use, you know, ad inventory on radio and TV to do it.
They've got sports properties as well that they own.
I think they're invested heavily in the Toronto Maple Leafs and a few others, Um, so it's it's sort of a different vertical for it, but yes, people do get laid off.
There are some stations that are, you know, like any market there's about three or four that are, you know, live and local and a few others that have morning shows that are from from afar.
And yeah, it is rather similar.
Okay, and and sadly, you know, similar at times and smaller markets that are not feeling the love when they're owned by one of the bigger companies.
And is it still the rule that you have to play Anne Murray and rush every hour or bare naked ladies?
Isn't that the truth or 35 percent?
Oh, it's not just those, but you don't have to just play rush at the top of the hour.
Okay, I would like that, though.
I think they'd be kind of cool if you had to play Rush at the top of the stations.
Should play rush at the top of the hour.
It's a great top of the hour song used to love playing that top of the hour.
Shout out to Donna Halper, by the way, for working man rush.
She added that a WM.
in 1974 and the band took off.
There you go.
It took an American radio station to do it.
By the way, that is very Canadian.
Not on that album, by the way.
That's very true.
Yes, I know my rush.
I know my I did classic rock.
You know, it's funny.
I did classic rock radio from, like age 17 to 26 And, uh, I'm just now able to listen to classic rock songs again that everybody else loves, because I just got so burned out on all of them.
So I've been rediscovering Rush and Led Zeppelin and all the bands that I got burned out on.
So it's been great.
Yeah, you know, I felt I had to memorize everything about the band because I had to tell the stories about the bands on the radio.
And then Wikipedia came along and I had to leave her podcasting well, And then and then, you know, now nobody has enough time to tell any stories, you know, it's like there's Rachelle.
Okay, here's Led Zeppelin Boom.
It's, you know, there's not much, not much chatter anymore.
I used to have to get the lead out every night at nine o'clock and play three Led Zeppelin songs.
So needless to say, I got pretty pretty deep.
I'm playing like be tracks from Kota, Uh, and telling stories just to, like, entertain myself.
I played too.
I did that.
And I played two at 5.
30 in the afternoon and the rover and trampled underfoot.
I love those.
Yeah, I just found physical graffiti again and I was like, It's really good.
And I like it.
Speaking of which, I guess, how long do you think it's going to be before we can actually play some songs in podcasting?
So I will tell you I had a conversation about this with a lawyer when I was at another big media company.
Um, and he seemed to think this was 23 years ago, that at the point that was at least six years away.
I mean, you can on Spotify, you know?
But that's that's the only one, but I don't know.
It's gonna It's so hard to, you know, it's hard enough for them to figure music royalties out for streaming services.
I mean to figure out royalties for podcasts.
It's, I don't know.
I think it's gonna be a long, hard road.
I mean, I mean, it'd be neat if they could give out just blank licenses and just, you know, get paid 500 bucks.
You get a license, you can play anything you want, and but I don't think that will ever happen.
And also, you have to do the licenses for every country the show is going to be downloaded in.
So that's a lot of paperwork.
And, you know, and I'm a purist.
You know, podcasts are for talking.
Have the music.
Yeah, I'll go that way too good for that.
Have you had any thought?
Maybe you've been approached.
Maybe you already have a podcast that is exclusive to Spotify or exclusive on anything.
And And have you thought about maybe just having a podcast?
That is subscription only.
Um, you know, I'm kind of out of the thinking about those kind of podcast right now because I'm so focused on brands.
Um, I do think that you know the thing about subscription.
I always tell everybody if you've already got a giant audience, it's a good you can do.
It's a good idea.
You can really do well.
But if you have a podcast you're wanting to gain new audience on, you're never going to gain new audience.
If you're charging people, nobody pays to try something out.
They never heard before.
At least not now.
And as far as the exclusive go, I mean, if on a podcast, if I have a podcast and Spotify offers me thank amount of money to make it exclusive, I would say take it.
Okay, so yeah, yeah, because, I mean, it's hard enough to make money in podcasting.
So if you can get a, you know, someplace like this, ubiquitous like a Spotify, as opposed to, you know, Malaya or one of the other companies that aren't doing so well or around us anymore.
They're charging or making things exclusive.
Um, it's a lot better.
People come, people go sometimes with their ideas in podcasting.
But, you know, one thing that seems to be consistent is the RSS feed.
It's it's there, and it's just cranking out audio all the time.
Really simple syndication.
Um, I wanted to speak briefly about the passing of G.
Um, because you worked with him?
Yeah, for a number of years, you were his producer who worked very closely with him, and we lost him earlier this year.
I mean, Gordon made my career.
I mean, I was a country music deejay, slash programmed, uh, a P d m.
D at rock station in West Virginia.
And I was trying to get to any big market that would have me.
And I found out that his producer had quit because I was a big fan of Don and Mike who were on after him and Howard, who was on before him.
And, uh, I got to d c.
And I just talked my way into this job.
John Pop, who was his executive producer, hired me, and, um then told me after a month that he was leaving, and then I was gonna have to program or be with Lady.
Um, Liddy was the nicest guy.
If you knew him well, I mean, people were afraid of him because of his reputation.
I was too young and dumb to know any better, so I would talk back to Gordon.
I just did things that nobody else did with him.
And it made my career.
I mean, honestly, that's how I ended up in New York, was they were like, Dude, you handle he handles Lady.
Let's just give him a morning show in New York that we have or having trouble with.
He was generous, cheap, though I always had to cover.
I was making like, I think I made $25,000 a year, and I'd have to cover our expenses when we go.
It was horrible.
Anyway, that's not a really good story about Gordon.
But, man, talk about I have some great G.
Gordon Liddy memories.
Um, I will never He loved ABBA, and so did John McCain.
So I I remember playing Abba into a segment with with Liddy and and McCain in the studio, and they're both singing along and, uh, made me fall.
I mean, I was I loved John McCain From that moment forward.
He was, you know, he was so cool and such a good dude.
And, um, you know, uh and then one time Gordon was talking to me about, uh, we were talking about baseball, and he's like Tim Leary and I used to go to baseball games together all the time, and I'm like, what?
And, you know, it turned out Gordon Liddy was on tour with with with.
He tried to put Leary and jail a bunch of times and they went on kind of a tour where they won was talking about pro drugs and London's anti drugs, and they became really good friends.
And they spent.
They go after the before the things they go to baseball games together.
They both liked going to baseball games.
Um, you know that to the couple times Gordon decided he had to go to the bathroom in the middle of a, uh, interview where we had to have a hard break and I had to cover and and talk while he went over to the plant in the corner and took a P uh, you know, I don't know.
I've got a lot of great G.
Gordon Liddy memories, but, uh, you know, the thing I would say that I will remember most about Gordon is like here's a very conservative man who was also very open minded and had a lot of views like his made the best guest we had on the show were like Lonnie Davis, like, I mean, guys who were totally on the left were today.
That never happens.
You don't see that interaction back.
I mean, when Gordon was doing it, you know, Gordon would say some outrageous stuff on the air, but he was, at his heart, a very smart, educated man.
So he'd like to see both sides of an issue so that he could actually argue his side properly.
And it's something that I don't see a lot, you know, he was a lawyer, so, you know, he had that background, but yeah, I was, you know, I love that guy.
I really did.
He was he was he was a great guy.
So it was.
It was I mean, he had a great life.
He lived on.
When I worked for him, he was already really old.
He was so, uh, you know, he definitely and he was tougher than me.
He would've kicked my ask back then when I was, like, 25 and he was 70.
So So there were two instances in 2021 where I thought, yeah, that was one.
And then, of course, the acquisition of your company back in late July.
And we tried to hook up a few times to to have this conversation, but I'm glad you made it out here today for this one.
Um, and by the way, the one in August, That was my fault.
I scheduled it, but I was sitting on a dock in Quebec, and I was like, I can't do a podcast from a dock in Quebec.
I'm on vacation.
So my fault.
I love you know, I went to school there for a semester.
So where did you go?
The J today Poor thanks to man a single to me.
She cool to me.
I think you mentioned you went to Chicoutimi at once.
She came to me.
Yeah, I know.
I lived there for a summer semester.
Uh, I loved it.
I loved it.
I came back to America.
I was like, I'm gonna move to Canada.
I just because I was there in the summer.
Uh, but I love it.
I've been I've been taking my I told my wife when I take her to lock ST John and and just I wanted to see Quebec and, you know, in Quebec City and and everything.
And we and we thought we would do it last year.
But alas, we weren't allowed to go into Canada so I think it's definitely a trip we're gonna make at some point.
Well, Quebec City is beautiful.
Um, I had a chance to work there at one point and do radio there, but we didn't get the license for the radio station and that would that would have been so much fun.
And in the end, I had to go to Winnipeg somewhere in Levy.
There is a there is a she not a little girl anymore.
I'm sure she's my age.
I'm sure she's still alive in my age, Uh, that I that I had a three hour romance with so not not sexual.
This is very, you know, very much holding hands kind of thing.
But, uh, did love those key back hard women.
You can take the ferry from Quebec over to Levy.
Yeah, we did.
And we had, like, we were, and this was actually in high school.
I I took my senior trip.
We went to Quebec and, uh, met some girls and went back to their house to like, see, you know everything and then almost missed the bus to our airport because we were on that ferry.
But it's a really random story.
Sorry about that.
I don't know where that came from.
No, just fond memories in general.
And I've got I've got restaurant recommendations in Quebec City issue.
If you do wind up going, so you'll be taking Oh, absolutely.
All I remember is what I had.
My best piece of pizza I've ever had was in Quebec City.
But at that point, I was from West Virginia, so I probably never had any good pizza for but the cheese, the cheese is really good.
Oh, it is good.
Thanks a lot, my man.
I went off to a little little beard off there at the end, but always fun to talk to you, Matt.
I'm not editing at that.
It's one of the better parts.
That's our Canadian content for the show.
The Sound Off Podcast is written and hosted by Matt Kendell Produced by Evan Sieminski Social Media by Courtney Krebsbach Another great creation from the Sound Off Media Company Imaging Courtesy core Image Studios There's always more at sound off podcast dot com.