Hit conversational podcast Anything Goes with content creator Emma Chamberlain is now available to listen to on all podcast platforms, signalling an end to the podcast’s full-exclusivity deal with streaming platform Spotify.
Chamberlain signed a multi-year licensing agreement with the platform in November 2022, granting it full exclusivity over the show’s back catalogue and future episodes. The deal, which came into force 23 February this year, also covered the introduction of video podcast content, which was similarly exclusive.
Yesterday, however, the Anything Goes twitter account made an official announcement that while video content will remain exclusive to the Spotify platform, the podcast would be returning to other channels in audio form.
PodPod has reached out to Spotify to ask why the decision has been taken to distribute the podcast more widely, and if it plans to do the same with any of its other creator partnerships. Earlier this year in March during Spotify’s annual Stream On event, Spotify’s head of US studios and video Julie McNamara revealed that the Anything Goes podcast “more than doubled its listenership” since moving exclusively to the platform.
Despite this success, however, Spotify appears to be pulling back from its previous strategy of keeping shows exclusive. According to a report by Bloomberg, Spotify is already in talks with actor Dax Shepard to distribute his successful podcast Armchair Expert on other platforms, two years after he signed his multi-year licensing deal with the audio giant.
The company first started relinquishing exclusivity over its shows in April this year, making a number of its Gimlet original podcasts available to listen to other platforms in order to grow its ad sales and broaden its audience. Spotify later confirmed to PodPod that it will also be doing the same with some of its Parcast originals after announcing its new podcast strategy which included combining the Gimlet and Parcast studios, both of which were acquired in 2019, into its preexisting Spotify Studios organisation.
According to a joint statement from the Gimlet and Parcast unions, Spotify’s exclusivity over the studios’ original slate of podcasts allegedly led to low performance numbers which caused 11 series to be cancelled in October 2019 and layoffs of “at least” 38 employees.
In comparison, at The Podcast Show 2023 which took place in May this year, iHeartPodcasts president Will Pearson spoke about how an essential part of the company’s podcast strategy is making its content accessible to listeners across all podcast platforms as podcasting is a publisher centric medium. “We believe in the broad distribution of podcasts,” he said.