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Inside Podcasting (Mar 28th, 2018)

Everyone has a favorite podcast. But even among the best podcasts, not all episodes are created equal. What's your favorite moment from your favorite podcast episode? Is it a funny or memorable remark? A clip you love, or a piece of music that really resonated for you? Hit "reply" and let us know the episode and the timestamp, and we'll share some of the results in a future issue.

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Pandora has purchased digital ad tech firm AdsWizz. The streaming music company paid $145 million for AdsWizz, which allows podcasters and traditional broadcasters to run programmatic ads. The companies will continue to operate independently but the acquisition is meant to help Pandora boost advertising on its free platform. Separately, Pandora has larger ambitions in the world of podcasting; CEO Roger Lynch said earlier this year that the company wants to do for podcasts what it did for streaming music, offering a platform that will make it easy for users to discover new shows. - VARIETY

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The BBC has named The Guardian’s Jason Phipps its first commissioning editor for podcasts. Formerly a BBC producer, Phipps will return to the broadcaster in May after a nine-year stint at The Guardian, most recently heading up that publication’s global podcast strategy. Now, he’ll be expected to develop and nurture new and existing podcasts for the BBC, with a priority on creating audio content that’s different in “tone and form” to the network’s traditional radio shows. Ben Chapman, Head of Digital for Radio at the BBC, said the broadcaster’s podcasts will aim to serve a distinct, younger audience “that’s less likely to listen on air.” - RADIOTODAY

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Radio personality Greg “Opie” Hughes will launch a show on the Westwood One Podcast Network. The former co-host of the “Opie and Anthony Show,” who was fired from SiriusXM Radio last July, said he will now host a twice-a-week podcast on Westwood One’s platform. The broadcaster, which also announced a new show from pro-wrestling personality Jim Ross this week, has been building out its portfolio of podcasts since last year, wooing prominent sports, entertainment and political names to host shows on its platform. In January, the company hired radio veteran Tim Sabean as its SVP of digital content. - INSIDERADIO

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Connie Britton will star in a Bravo TV adaptation of the hit podcast “Dirty John.” The star of “Nashville,” “American Horror Story,” and “Friday Night Lights” will also serve as an executive producer on the scripted series, which is based on the investigations of LA Times reporter Christopher Goffard into the life and crimes of con man John Meehan. Bravo’s anthology series is one of two “Dirty John” adaptations; Oxygen will also produce an unscripted true crime show based on the podcast. - DEADLINE

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A lack of standardized measurement makes podcast advertising a hard sell for brands, according to industry observers. Speaking at the RAIN Podcast Business Summit last week, executives at Midroll, Pandora and Squarespace said that inconsistencies in how the industry tracks downloads, impressions and listens makes it hard for CMOs to know what they’re paying for when they buy an ad. Groups like the IAB and NPR are developing technologies that could enable industrywide standardization, but Midroll’s Lex Friedman believes that “unless Apple adds those technologies, it doesn’t really matter.” -  ADEXCHANGER

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