Wondery announces partnership with Barometer to enhance brand safety for advertisers

IAB Podcast Upfronts announcements also include new TV series and podcast launches

Podcast network Wondery, a subsidiary of Amazon Music, has partnered with AI podcast measurement firm Barometer to enforce brand suitability guidelines. 

The announcement was made at this year’s IAB Podcast Upfronts, an annual podcast advertising summit held by the Interactive Advertising Bureau. The news was revealed by Wondery’s head of revenue Angie More, who recently joined the company in February 2023 after leaving her role at Spotify as head of global podcast sales.

“I… want to address a topic that's table stakes for any advertiser: brand safety. Today, we are thrilled to announce a partnership with Barometer and offer new brand safety and suitability solutions for clients,” said More. “These tools will give advertisers more insight and intelligence on where they're placing their ads.” 

Barometer uses AI technology and contextual targeting tools to examine podcast transcripts and looks at keywords, tone, context and sentiment. The platform then rates them across four levels of risk and determines if the transcripts are compliant with the IAB’s content taxonomy 3.0 brand appropriateness standards.

In addition to the partnership with Barometer, More also announced that Wondery will be launching three new TV series based on the network’s original podcasts: season 2 of Dr. Death with Edgar Ramirez and Mandy Moore Peacock, Twin Flames (also with Moore) on Hulu, and Ryan Murphy’s American Sports Story, which has been greenlit by FX and focuses on former NFL star Aaron Hernandez. 

“Brands that work with Wondery have the chance to align with shows that transcend audio,” said More. “A Wondery podcast today could be the next hit TV series of tomorrow, or a live tour or a merch collab. We break the sound barrier and continuously extend fandom beyond the podcast.” 

Wondery chief content officer Marshall Lewy also announced at the IAB Podcast Upfronts the launch of a new original podcast in partnership with Bloomberg titled Spellcaster: The Fall of Sam Bankman-Fried on the scandal surrounding the young crypto billionaire, hosted by Bloomberg crypto and tech reporter Hannah Miller, along with Bloomberg colleagues Max Chafkin and Annie Massa. 

The miniseries is created by the team behind true-crime podcast The Shrink Next Door which is also part of the partnership between Wondery and Bloomberg. Spellcaster is launching 22 May, with the first two episodes available on Wondery+ and the Bloomberg Terminal and will be available everywhere else from 5 June weekly. Prime members can also listen ad-free on Amazon Music from 5 June.