How Podcasting Takes on Licensing

Day 2 keynote explored the intersection of podcasting and licensing.

Barbara Smith , Digital Editor

May 22, 2024

2 Min Read
Is Podcasting Where the Next Hit Franchise Will Come From? Keynote at Licensing Expo
Is Podcasting Where the Next Hit Franchise Will Come From? Keynote at Licensing Expo, Steve Manners, Guy Raz and Nicole BlakeIs Podcasting Where the Next Hit Franchise Will Come From?

Podcasts and their global popularity were the subject of the Day 2 Keynote, “Is Podcasting Where the Next Hit Franchise Will Come From? Sounds Like it.” The focus of the talk centered on how IP can lead to product ranges.

Guy Raz, host of “Wow in the World,” “How I Built This,” and “The Great Creators,” and Nicole Blake, chief brand officer of Wondery, shared insights on how podcasts continue to participate in the cultural zeitgeist in a talk moderated by Steve Manners, head of global marketing and U.K. managing director of Licensing International.

Blake’s background is in consumer products and product packaging, and she came to Wondery after being tapped by Jen Sargent, chief executive officer, Wondery.

“The world has changed, the tools have changed,” says Blake. “I like building and having the chance to do something new. So, when Wondery called, I was able to build something new.”

Since podcasts continue to grow in popularity, the quality and topics can widely vary. For “Wow in the World,” they have to create a show for kids and their parents. “Wow in the World” is often co-listened to, meaning that while the show is aimed at kids interested in STEM, parents will also tune in with their children.

“You hear kids in each episode of ‘Wow in the World,’” says Raz. “But we also have to have things like multi-angled jokes for everyone to enjoy.”

Related:Licensing Expo 2024 Show Dailies - Day 2

Since this is Licensing Expo, the topic of brand extension came up.

Sargent saw the value in potentially entering the consumer products space, even though it was uncharted territory.

“With the Wondery fandom, isn’t there room to turn it into merchandise?” says Blake. “What I found is that building IP for movies, books and more is just like [creating] IP from podcasts.”

Later this year, “Wow in the World” and Wondery will launch a line of consumer products inspired by the show.

“You can see this natural fit with this audio podcast, with these toys,” says Raz. “It’s a natural synergy between what we do and these toys that are coming to life … The connections will continue to grow from tactile things, like toys.”

But the opportunity doesn’t just have to come from audience needs and interests, but it can also come from companies that have been successful in whatever they do.

“I would probably take a page from the 500+ companies I have studied [in “How I Built This”], they all do three things – build a collaborative environment, take risks and tolerate failure (to some degree),” says Raz.

The session concluded with reminding the audience that the idea for consumer products can come from anywhere, even if other companies haven’t taken the risk.

About the Author(s)

Barbara Smith

Digital Editor , License Global

Barbara Smith is a Digital Editor for License Global. Based in the U.S., while Barbara's remit is general news coverage, she enjoys focusing on apparel, travel and social media throughout North America. Barbara loves all things fashion, fitness and food!

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