Acast launches paid platform for premium podcast access

Acast+ canvasPodcast network Acast has launched a new feature on its hosting platform that allows show creators alternative ways of monetizing their work. With Acast+, programs can charge listeners for exclusive access and premium audio content without advertisements. They can also make early releases available before they are published to the core app for a fee. A roster of shows such as HorseHour Podcast, The Football Ramble, Flash Forward, and How to Kill An Hour have already signed on to this program.

Acast+ supplies two main monetization options. First, a podcast can sell listeners a show pass offering additional content for up to $6.99 a month. Or it can make specific audio items available to be bought as one-off purchases for a recommended cost of $2.99 to $6.99.

The programs on Acast+ can use the tool to sell additional content, but the company’s leader told The Wall Street Journal that a direct-to-fan approach from celebrity talent is the end goal. “This is the final step of podcasting in my mind,” cofounder and CEO Måns Ulvestam said. “You can monetize through ads and you can monetize through payment.”

Anna Washenko