As a modern consumer, we are spoilt for choice and technology at any given time. So much that, our attention is being sought after and paid handsomely for by the highest bidder through every ad agency, marketplace and outlet you can think of.
So, that being said, it’s VERY rare for our attention to stay fixated on one person, event or thing beyond a few minutes, hours or even days, barring it becoming a hobby or obsession.
Yet Joe Rogans podcast for millions of consumers across the world achieved exactly just that. Without any marketing whatsoever, Joes interviews, ramblings, sound bites, sources of memes and viral clips have been an integral part of the internet & daily part of many peoples lives.
The Joe Rogan Spotify exclusivity announcement was met with a very mixed reaction, the youtube comments definitely warranted Joes “don’t read the comments” mantra and the like / dislike ratio on videos immediately after the announcement, reflected a disgruntled audience.
Perhaps the view that the Spotify view has lost many viewers, is a reflection of our own experiences. I myself have went from being an avid viewer and listener to barely checking who the guests are.
However the data seems to support less people are interested in Joe than they were prior to the move.
Google Trends points to a massive fall off in interest after September, the official date for the change over from the podcast being offered on all platforms, to Spotify only.
Whilst the logical explanation for this would simply be that people know the only place to find Joe is now on Spotify, they would no longer need to look for him in alternative websites, the evidence throughout comment forums from Youtube to Reddit, seems to suggest people are adverse to the move and unwilling to change platforms, even for their favourite podcaster, someone they have no doubt spent years listening to.
Spotify just isn’t built to be a multimedia experience..yet
JRE was more than just a podcast, it was a community for many and whilst the comment section can showcase the worst in humanity it can do the inverse also. Personal stories were shared, memes were created and the engagement that drove the podcast up to unheard of heights, is sorely lacking in the Spotify videos, there is no livestreams or hiccup moments. The Spotify experience feels stale and boring even with the video and that’s before we get into the fact that as a platform, it’s just not podcast friendly.
Previously users had choice, we could download for free on stitcher on android or use apple podcasts, we could tune in live on Youtube, check in the user submitted clips on Reddit. All of these platforms offered their own unique traffic bases & new funnels for new users to discover the JRE experience. Whilst Spotifys user base is huge, putting all your eggs in one basket and alienating a fair % of your fanbase is probably not a good idea.
Personally I spent most of my listening hours on long road trips moving across country, others might have never missed the show watching live on YouTube and actively engaging.
Joe has mentioned he wanted Spotify to look into adding comments but from his remarks, it seems it wasn’t something Spotify were keen on.
There are a ton of tools out there that make clipping / downloading from Youtube a breeze. Spotify just isn’t as seamless for the user sharing and organic growth experience, while one could argue Joe is such a household name, he doesn’t need any further growth, it’s still easy to fall out of the spotlight and into the back of peoples minds, which isn’t a good thing for any public persona.
Whilst many would say, why would Joe care, he got paid! Well, that’s not the view many of us hold, as many believe Joe could have leveraged his massive online presence for a much higher return should he have gone down other routes and is a sign that either
It’s possible Joe undervalued himself or he wanted to ease off the business side of things. Rogan mentioned on a podcast in 2019 that the podcast was doing 190 million downloads per month.
You don’t need to get too imaginative to think how, leveraging his own massive influence and network to create his own platform, he could have dwarfed the contract he took with Spotify.
Personally once the podcasts stopped rolling in September 2020, I just moved on to other shows whilst Spotify dealt with the teething problems, like Bill Burr’s Monday morning / Thursday afternoon podcast or another new one I’ve recently jumped on to is the “Myths and Legends” podcast and would heartily recommend both.
Will I give JRE another chance?