Seeking to differentiate its subscription channel for the growing list in front of consumers, Sony Music Entertainment’s global podcast division is adopting a modern-day media habit: binging. SME launches The Binge, a first-of-its-kind subscription channel giving fans unlimited access to full seasons of new podcasts every month.
“We were the first to believe in the power of subscription to move the podcast industry forward,” said Emily Rasekh, Senior Vice President of Business Development and Podcast Operations. “And we’re seeing demand and binge-listening behavior on our network continue to grow, similar to other forms of media.”
When The Binge launches on June 6, listeners will be able to subscribe to the channel on Apple Podcasts to access full seasons of two new original series as well as the back catalog of SMB shows. New shows airing on The Binge won’t be exclusive to the channel, however. SME will continue to broadcast them episode by episode on all listening applications.
“With The Binge, we’re building our offering on these listening habits and providing an unprecedented new destination for listeners around the world to get what they want, when they want it,” Rasekh said.
SME says it has already had success in the subscription business. Three of his show-based channels — Chameleon, Bad Blood: The Final Chapter and The Just Enough Family — were on Apple’s list of top 10 subscription channels at the end of 2021. He notes that the Just Enough series Family was previously available for binging to subscribers when it debuted.
SME also recently launched a new subscription channel for the British podcast Kermode & Mayo’s Take. Since its debut over two weeks ago, it has become the fastest growing and largest subscription ever on Apple Podcasts in the UK.
One of the first two new podcasts released through The Binge channel is Witnessed: Friendly Fire. The true crime series produced by Campside Media is about the death of a Scott County, TN sheriff at the hands of his partner, considering whether it was a catastrophic mistake or an intentional murder. The podcast is hosted by journalist Sean Flynn.
The other new show debuting is called Fringe Network: Alien State. Produced by Somethin’ Else, the show hosted by MJ Banias is about UFOs. Once downplayed by the government, new evidence and uncovered documents prove that the US government is, and always has been, very interested in the UFO phenomenon.
Then on June 16, the next show to debut on The Binge is called Smoke Screen: Puppy Kingpin. Produced by Neon Hum, the series shines the spotlight on Jolyn Noethe, a secret Iowa businesswoman who is accused of laundering puppies much like drug money. Investigative journalist Alex Schuman exposes the scheme and an underground part of the industry bringing Americans the pets they love.
Each new show launch will offer subscribers the ability to listen to all ad-free episodes at the same time. In addition, the channel will also include exclusive, ad-free access to library content from some of SME’s biggest hit series, including Chameleon, Death at the Wing, Firebug, The Doodler, The Just Enough Family, and Witnessed: Borderlands. .