The new company, created by high school friends Agnes Kozera and David Kierzkowski, is a marketplace that enables podcasters and brands to collaborate for native branded content. Kozera and Kierzkowski are hoping to end the problem podcasters have making money by connecting brands with podcasters based on certain criteria such as content, audiences and business goals.
The company says an algorithm using machine learning analyzes campaign data to understand what works or doesn’t work for a given brand or podcaster, optimizing on a campaign basis to continuously improve its matches.
Brands sign up with Podcorn, create a campaign and indicate certain campaign criteria such as their campaign budget, types of ad creatives, and types of podcasters they would like to work with. Podcorn then uses its sponsorship graph to match the campaign with the best suited podcasters and when both parties agree to the deal, the system sets up a virtual workroom for the project. The funds are kept in escrow during the campaign and released only upon completion of the project.
Kierzkowski says every podcaster has a unique sponsorship graph. “We built the infrastructure to connect the dots to gain more context about each podcaster’s identity, their content, and what our brands are looking for. Our goal is to encode relationships and surface the most relevant matches to truly scale native branded content, drive higher ROI for brands, and increase the rate at which podcasters monetize their content.”
Kozera adds, “From our conversations with our brand partners and podcasters we can see that we have built something that the industry really needs. The excitement we’re seeing is much bigger than even the early days of video influencers. Brands now understand the value of partnering with relevant personalities, and with podcasts, the vertical scope and content diversity are much wider. It supports longer, more intimate ad formats for more authentic integrations, and brands don’t have to wait for audiences to be glued to a screen in order to reach them.”