Creator-first, free streaming audio platform, Vurbl, secures partnership with leading publisher of celebrity and health & fitness media content
Los Angeles, CA. — (February 24, 2021, 8am EST) — Vurbl, one of the largest new audio streaming platforms in the US, has just announced a paramount ad partnership with, a360 Media, which owns and operates the leading celebrity and health & wellness brands in the country including Us Weekly, inTouch, Life & Style, Closer Weekly, and distributes popular pop-culture podcasts Getting Real With The Housewives , Hot Hollywood ,Here For the Right Reasons, Watch With Us and Get Tressed. With cutting edge audio streaming technology, ability to snip longform content into bite-size and highly consumable show highlights and clips, Vurbl will provide a360 with additional podcast revenue through Vurbl audio embeds, and on multiple a360 Vurbl-hosted audio Stations.
This partnership marks Vurbl’s first major ad publishing partnership and an industry first, where an existing major podcast publisher will incrementally increase their monetization opportunities through real-time bidding (RTB) programmatic advertising served around clips, playlists and highlight reels utilizing both current and archival podcast content. Specifically, Vurbl will stream embedded snippets, promos and playlists of a360 podcasts, across several a360 web properties, and on the a360-run Vurbl stations available directly on the Vurbl platform.
Vurbl’s programmatic ad marketplace is managed in collaboration with Magnite, the largest independent sell-side advertising platform, who together will exclusively handle all RTB programmatic ad monetization of the a360 Vurbl embed and Vurbl hosted audio stations.
“We are thrilled to announce our first scaled ad partnership deal with a360, where we aim to prove that there is more to podcasting monetization than the traditional native and dynamic-inserted ads in downloaded audio files,” said Audra Gold, CEO of Vurbl. “Our platform is the first to provide this type of monetization opportunity for major podcast publishers, enabling them to drastically increase their audio ad inventory, scale their listen counts, and improve audio ad-measurement. We believe this partnership is the just the beginning of an audio monetization sea-change – one in which Vurbl will lead the way.”
Together, Vurbl and a360media will be running millions of embedded audio impressions across several a360 web properties, highlighting key moments and teasers from their most popular podcasts, as well as around podcast highlight reels and best-of archival playlists. Vurbl will also be assisting in the growth of the several a360 audio stations available on the Vurbl platform, increasing a360’s overall reach to new listeners dramatically.
With spending on podcast advertising expected to exceed $1 billion this year according to eMarketer, it is great to see innovation and collaboration happening within the audio advertising space,” said Tom Kershaw, Chief Technology Officer at Magnite. “As more marketers recognize the opportunity to reach highly engaged listeners through podcasts, Magnite is excited to work with Vurbl on advertising solutions that bring value to publishers and advertisers while maintaining an excellent listener experience.”
On a tactical level a360 journalists are already embedding snippet highlights from podcasts within their articles in order to amplify their reader experience with audio. “Publishers, bloggers and journalists have been including relevant images and videos in their posts for years so it’s surprising that audio snippets were never a common part of this equation from both a journalistic and monetization optimization perspective. It’s a void we had to fill,” said Gold.
The a360/Vurbl partnership demonstrates how publishers, podcasters and writers are already running with Vurbl’s snippet tool and playlist functionality to showcase their work. With Vurbl, creators aren’t cornered into long-form hour plus episodes to promote themselves. Here are some live examples of Vurbl snippet embeds in a360 articles: RHOSLC’s Mary Cosby ‘Was Not Expecting’ Her ‘Unconventional’ Marriage to Step-Grandfather to Be Included in Trailer. Dylan Barbour Slams the ‘Bachelor’ Franchise, Claims Jed Wyatt Never Cheated on Hanna Brown. And here’s a playlist the a360 team created out of snippets from their Here for the Right Reasons podcast.
“As we continue to build on the extraordinary growth with our podcast network, it is a great opportunity to partner with Vurbl to further leverage our engaged audience,” said Eli Lippman, GM, Digital at a360 Media. “As the leading producer of celebrity content, we understand the importance of content pace and timeliness, by further incorporating short-form clips across our platforms we can create new opportunities for our podcasts to go viral and further engage a broader audience.”
Vurbl launched its web-based platform experience in November of 2020, following a $1.3 million seed round, with millions of audio titles, curated playlists and audio stations built around popular topics. Vurbl are currently one of the fastest growing audio properties in the US, hosting thousands of audio Stations created by podcasters, educators, youtubers, meditation and sleep sounds artists, religious groups and more. Vurbl’s mobile, downloadable desktop, and CTV apps will be rolling out over the next several months, continuing to increase reach to audio-listeners wherever they are. In-home device integration with Alexa and Google Assistant as well as live-audio streaming is also planned for later this year.
Vurbl is a creator-first, free streaming audio platform for all audio types, including user generated audio, across 40 categories. Vurbl is revolutionizing the way people distribute and listen to audio-centric information across the web. Just like YouTube, Vurbl allows content creators to upload, earn subscribers and monetize their work. Audra Gold founded Vurbl in 2020 with the idea of a different and unique streaming site solely for audio creators. Vurbl’s website can be found at https://vurbl.com/. Follow Vurbl on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook.
About a360 Media
a360 Media owns and operates the leading celebrity and health & fitness media brands in the country. Its magazines have a combined total circulation of 5.3+ million and reach 32.6+ million men and women each month. Its digital properties reach 50+ million unique visitors and 652+ million page views monthly, and our social media channels reach 56+ million visitors.