There is another connection between podcasts and audiobooks. Podcast studio Lemonada Media is teaming with Apple Books to create a program that unites fans of nonfiction storytelling across books and podcasts. Each month, the Lemonada Book Club will select a group of audiobooks available on Apple Books which will then be the focus of conversations on podcasts produced by Lemonada.
Apple Books has a vast catalog of over 10 million titles. Those selected for the program will span a wide range of topics and genres, including memoirs and life guides that will fit nicely into the Lemonada mission of creating a podcast network “that makes life suck less.” Members of the Lemonada Book Club will receive regular audiobook recommendations that relate to the topics discussed on their favorite Lemonada podcasts, hear from the authors of selected titles on these shows, and participate in digital community events with other listeners.
“When we piloted the Lemonada Book Club last year, the immediate demand demonstrated to us that our listeners want to engage, build community, and have access to more curated content,” said Lemonada CEO Jessica Cordova Kramer. “This new collaboration with Apple Books helps us do just that – expand the range of titles available to listeners, provide even more curated recommendations, and foster a greater sense of community among listeners.”
The first round of audiobook selections from Lemonada and Apple Books includes “A Living Remedy” by Nicole Chung, “You Could Make This Place Beautiful” by Maggie Smith, and “Drama Free” by Nedra Glover Tawwab.
Audiobooks have caught the attention of a few podcast companies. Spotify launched its audiobook feature in September, giving its U.S. users access to 300,000 audiobook titles. The price for each audiobook will vary with Spotify and publishers working out how much each will cost. Spotify had been on a course to join the audiobook providers since its acquisition of Findaway in November 2021.
TuneIn last week said it was adding an audiobook library to its app as a companion to its spoken word lineup of podcasts and talk radio live streams. Unlike Spotify, which sells listeners access to audiobooks on a per-title basis, TuneIn says it will make more than 120,000 audiobooks available to subscribers of its TuneIn Premium service for no additional cost. Users will have unlimited access to the library, with no limits on audiobook consumption and no need for additional purchases.
Some forecasters believe the audiobooks market will grow from $3.3 billion to $15 billion by 2027. A survey conducted by Maru Group for Variety last June found that 13% of American adults already have an audiobook subscription. But among those that don’t, seven percent say they are either “definitely” or “probably” going to sign up for a plan in the coming year. That would translate into about 16 million new audiobook subscribers, or roughly the total number of adults that currently pay for a service.