Michael Knowles’ Radio Deal Indicates Industry’s Future

Wednesday, Westwood One announced it will syndicate Michael Knowles’ Daily Wire podcast starting on Jan. 4, 2021.

Inside media circles, the future of terrestrial radio is a top discussion and wonder. While political talk should endure longer than sports and entertainment radio, Knowles’ deal could indicate the direction of the industry: syndicating an established podcast across radio airwaves.

Before Knowles, Westwood One expanded Ben Shapiro’s leading news podcast to a daily radio show and took on Dan Bongino’s, which recently ranked No. 1 overall on Apple Podcast.

I expect to see more highly-consumed digital shows picked up for terrestrial syndication, especially now that there are more growing podcasts than radio shows.

The idea comes years after most radio programs became available free, on-demand as podcasts. But as Buck Sexton told me on OutKick this week, it’s essentially the same. Sexton explained:

“Technology has advanced to a point now where radio and podcasting are much of the same. 

“There are differences, the same way as watching a TV show on-demand on your tablet versus watching on a flat screen on your cable box is different. But ultimately, it’s all about the content and that connection that you create with the audience.”

Currently, release frequency is the key difference between the two mediums. Radio shows are daily, but a podcast may release a new episode once a week. Thus, Knowles will soon expand his show from four to five days a week to fit a radio schedule.

The growth of political podcasts will likely remain among news media’s most fascinating storylines over the next several years. Others include the growing reports President Donald Trump is looking to take on Fox News and the belief that AT&T could sell CNN.

Follow Bobby Burack on Twitter.

Written by Bobby Burack

Bobby Burack covers media, politics, and sports at OutKick.

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