IAB Podcast Upfront shifts to May in 2021, closer to the video NewFronts

The Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB) has announced that the annual Podcast Upfront, a fall event in past years (September in 2020), is moving to the week of May 10 in 2021. The idea is to get it closer to the IAB NewFronts (week of May 3), the video counterpart to the podcasting event, “to enable marketers to evaluate their omni-channel investments in an increasingly holistic way.”

The shift makes sense, especially as the crossover from podcasting to television is gaining momentum, especially in dealmaking. Recent examples include Wonder Media Network signing with WME (helping Wonder expand into TV), and Religion of Sports partnering with PRX to push in the other direction — a video programmer wanting to deepen its presence in podcasting.

The NewFronts event is putting an emphasis on holism also, that will “provide buyers and sellers a holistic video marketplace inclusive of video across every screen.”

From David Cohen, IAB CEO: “Streaming is the future, and the future is now. Consumers make no distinction between different forms of video.”

At this time a virtual, live-streaming event is planned for the NewFronts, and most likely for the Podcast Upfront also. The 2020 Podcast Upfront was a three-day online affair featuring highly produced video shows by participating presenters.


Brad Hill