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Podcast News Bites: Facebook, iHeart, Triton, NPR, What’s The Story? Sounds.

...Edison Research’s third quarter Podcast Consumer Tracker data suggests the addition of podcasts to Facebook is getting noticed by users of the social media app. When Edison asked in Q2 if they ever listen to a podcast on Facebook, 8% of those surveyed said yes. In the latest quarter 20% said they occasionally use Facebook to listen to a show. Edison SVP Tom Webster says in a blog post that while that is “still a lot lower” than Apple, Spotify and YouTube for the same question, he thinks it’s a clear indication that “there’s a there there” for podcasts on Facebook. Reps from Facebook said in October that the growth has looked “really promising” but the company hasn’t released any numbers.

...More than two years after switching to an all-podcast format on KABQ Albuquerque (1350), iHeartMedia has switched programming on the station. It has begun airing an all-Christmas format as “Santa 1350” suggesting a format change will follow after the holiday season. KABQ has had what seems like a small, but steady audience as Nielsen reports its ratings have been a 0.1 share among those aged 12 and older during the past three months. The all-podcast format remains on iHeart’s WSAN Allentown-Bethlehem, PA (1470) and WEBG Erie, PA (95.9).

....The television production company Kudos is expanding into podcasting. The U.K.-based company has taken a 25% stake in the U.K. podcast studio What’s The Story? Sounds. The investment comes a year after Kudos signed a first-look deal with What’s The Story? Sounds for development of podcast content for television. Kudo’s co-Managing Director Martin Haines said there has been a “hugely fruitful synergy” between the two types of content. “Working together, there is a real opportunity to discover new stories and new ways to tell them for both television and for the audio space,” said Haines. What’s The Story? Sounds-- launched by former television producers Darrell Brown and Sophie Ellis -- is the studio behind podcasts such as Body of Proof for Audible, The Missing, and Emily Atack: Lie Detector for Spotify. It has announced three new shows are set for release in 2022.

...Triton Digital says the top 100 podcasts in Latin America had a combined 27 million downloads during October. That is an 18% drop from the 33 million downloads the top 100 logged during September. The top two podcasts remained the same led by the on-demand version of Prisa Radio’s La Corneta afternoon show based at its Los 40 network in Mexico. It averaged more than 1.1 million downloads per week. Sonoro Media/All Things Comedy’s Leyendas Legendarias ranked second with about 796,000 downloads per week. CNN’s 5 Things podcast remained the top English-language show at No. 41. Read the latest ranker for the 25-country region HERE.

...Edison Research is expanding its Infinite Dial studies to the U.K. Similar to the reports it produces in the U.S., Canada, Australia, Germany and South Africa, the report will look at how audio is being consumed in the U.K. market. That includes podcast, streaming audio and other media. The report is being underwritten by Bauer Media and Spotify and will be presented during a webinar on Thursday, Dec. 2. Register HERE.

...NPR’s annual, interactive, year-end reading guide is rebranded from NPR Book Concierge to Books We Love.” The guide features more than 360 selections of books that were published in 2021. "Over eight editions, the Book Concierge became a much loved and hotly anticipated list and service from NPR each year," Acting Chief Culture Editor Beth Donovan said in a release. "Now we've renamed this dynamic guide to better reflect our passion about books and our audience. We never imagined we'd be finalizing this latest edition without NPR Books Editor Petra Mayer who died suddenly on November 13th. Petra was one of the original architects of this project, and she was thrilled with the new name and the 2021 collection of titles. We're proud to present them to you today in her honor."

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