The Heir, The Spare and the “Baby Brain” -The Prince Harry and Meghan show rumbles on…

MacMadame

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Why not? The main attention was attracted not just by the film and the book itself, but by the information that was in them.
Because they aren't the same thing so they don't get marketed the same way and their success isn't judged the same either.

Meghan's podcast was very popular. Spotify has said this. Their complaint is that they wanted more from the couple not that they didn't like what they got.
 

puglover

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Well, if we believe popularity polls, something has clearly gone wrong with their approach. There is a fascination with the British Royal Family, their mystique, and Prince Harry, was very popular. Meghan, no doubt polarizing, was no less fascinating. After the Oprah interview, a Netflix documentary, Harry's book, and their ongoing estrangement with his family which puts them on the outside of things like Trooping of the Colours, they need to find ways to remain relevant. A number of British commentators think they shot their wad all at once and are struggling with where they go from here. South Park didn't help. Again, I see much more of an easy transition for Meghan and think Harry has to drop the pity party.
 

marbri

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It would be interesting to see the actual rankings of each episode of the podcast, if for no other reason than to end the debate about how popular it was (or wasn't). And from neutral sources because headlines after the first episode stating she knocked Joe Rogen off the #1 spot I can understand. But I also see articles from Oct/Nov saying it dropped to 77.

But it's really hard to get cold hard facts from neutral sources who aren't trying to either promote the podcast or trying to knock her down. Logically I can't understand why Spotify would dump any podcast if it was pulling in big audiences and making them money 🤷‍♀️
 

airgelaal

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Let's be honest. Meghan had a successful career as an actress and blogger, but she wasn't all that famous or popular. Harry has been famous and popular since birth, simply because of the fact that he belongs to the royal family. He personally did nothing for this. They were most popular as working members of the royal family, and the royal family is a huge corporation that employs a considerable number of people. Therefore, I do not really understand why it is believed that they can maintain the same fame and success after leaving the royal family.
We do not believe that the children of Olympic champions are obliged to become Olympic champions themselves. They may not have any talent for sports at all.
 

MacMadame

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Logically I can't understand why Spotify would dump any podcast if it was pulling in big audiences and making them money 🤷‍♀️
Pulling in big audiences is not the same as making big money in the podcast world. Archetypes was frequently the number one podcast in its category but it's a podcast and it's only on Spotify.

Podcasts and other ways to make money from social media is an interest of mine so I read about it all the time. This is a good article from The Verge about Spotify and their podcast strategy and the mistakes they've made. It includes some discussion about the H&M deal but is mostly about Spotify (and podcasting), in general:


Some excerpts:
Spotify knows something is wrong with its podcast strategy — and these past few weeks have proved it. The company’s missteps reveal how fundamentally different the formula of success is in podcasts from film, video games, books, and even music. Franchises, IP, and name recognition can be enough to deliver a hit across many different mediums. But in the world of podcasts, a series from an acclaimed filmmaker, best-selling author, or even a former president can barely register on the charts. And after years of chasing this hit-making strategy, it all seems to be falling apart.
Yet despite coming with their own excellent staffs and built-in audiences, Spotify’s lack of direction and knowledge of the podcasting space proved to be a death sentence for Gimlet and Parcast. The studios failed to attract large audiences and develop hit new shows. Shows didn’t get the right marketing or support from Spotify. Keeping certain podcasts exclusive to Spotify meant a drop in audience.
And about H&M's deal in particular
Bill Simmons, Spotify’s head of podcast innovation and monetization, also proceeded to blast the couple on his show, calling them a pair of “grifters.” He also teased a drunk reenactment of a disastrous Zoom brainstorming sesh with Prince Harry.
I (and very many others) would pay serious money to listen to Simmons tell that story. But his anecdote comes off just as bad for Spotify as it does for the duke and duchess, suggesting that Spotify signed the royals to a multiyear, multimillion-dollar deal without knowing whether they’d actually be good at creating podcasts or what those podcasts would be about.
And other deals that didn't pan out:
Prior to the Archewell fallout, Spotify’s deals with several other high-profile, star-driven studios and creators came to an end, including Higher Ground, Brené Brown, and Ava DuVernay. Barack and Michelle Obama’s production company Higher Ground opted not to renew its contract with Spotify last year, citing a desire to no longer have its shows locked to one platform. A multiyear exclusive deal with DuVernay didn’t lead to a single podcast — both parties also cut ties last year.
IOW, the H&M deal isn't the only deal that didn't pan out for either party.

Criticism from the industry:
According to Nuzum, until Spotify figures out what makes its platform stand out from competitors like Apple, Stitcher, SiriusXM, and others, it won’t matter who they sign up. The company is still far from the most popular platform for podcasts. That distinction belongs to YouTube, while Apple Podcasts has the largest number of downloads (thanks largely to its automatic downloads feature) — accounting for 71 percent of downloads, compared to Spotify’s 9 percent, according to Podtrac figures from March.
A lot of stuff about the Rogan deal including this:
Rogan can go anywhere with his show, taking a large portion of Spotify’s revenue with him, which means that Spotify’s most lucrative deal is also its biggest weakness, with the possibility of collapsing on any given day. And whatever happens to Spotify will impact the rest of the audio industry.
To sum up: Spotify threw money at all sorts of people (and continues to as they just signed a deal with Trevor Noah) but the terms of the contracts were sometimes vague, they required exclusivity that limited the audience of the podcasts, they didn't support or market the podcasts properly, and mostly these deals haven't panned out for either them or the podcasters.

Rogan still makes them money (presumably) but that deal is not going to save them especially if he decides to take his ball and go home.

Nowhere in the various analysis I've read about what is going on at Spotify does it say that Archetypes was a bad podcast that couldn't keep an audience, btw. OTOH, the Verge article (and others) points out that when Obama & Springsteen did a podcast, it put people to sleep. :lol: And apparently, H&M aren't the only artists who didn't produce. Ava DuVernay didn't deliver even a single episode under her contract.

This is not to say that H&M aren't grifters or that their other ideas for podcasts were good and would also have had good audiences. It's just that they are part of a pattern with Spotify and their parting ways says as much about Spotify as it does about them.

I am way more interested in what becomes of their Netflix deal since Netflix seems to know what it is doing when it comes to original content. One would hope the contract was better designed and Netflix knew more about what they were going to get from it. Or that they didn't have to pay if nothing got produced. Signing artists to make content and then not getting that content happens in other entertainment industries like movies and music so I presume that companies have clauses for this and contingency plans and it factors into their deals.
 

Jenny

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Maybe they thought they'd be like the Duke and Duchess of Windsor - they lived a celebrity lifestyle for decades after he abdicated. Or perhaps Meghan fancied herself the next Grace Kelly - there were parallels drawn when she first came on the scene.

I think the problem is either that they don't really know what they want, or what may be more likely, that they don't agree on what they want. And that Harry, his life so structured and protected for so long, in many ways doesn't have a clue.

At this point they seem spread too thin so that they're trying to do a lot, but accomplishing very little as a result.
 

overedge

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Maybe he’s just not that keen on podcasting?

I wonder if Harry’s attentions were solely on his book as that was the project that he had a vested interest in seeing through.

I get what you're saying, but it seems odd to sign up for a $20 million podcasting deal if he didn't really want to do podcasts.

He also could have done more than a few episodes around his book. Get the ghostwriter on as a guest, get some of his armed forces colleagues to discuss events while he was in the military, etc. Not that the book needed a lot of help to be a best-seller, but he was very articulate talking about it in the interviews he did.
 

starrynight

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I get what you're saying, but it seems odd to sign up for a $20 million podcasting deal if he didn't really want to do podcasts.

I believe Harry said signing up to Netflix and Spotify was never part of the plan, but they had to when they realised that the taxpayer/Charles wouldn’t fund them.

So I really do think it’s likely those deals were signed primarily for money with the actual podcasting being a secondary consideration. Hence how it ended up that Harry never produced a podcast in the end.

Meghan has a lot more hustle than Harry, so she was able to get something out. Harry probably never really wanted to do it, so didn’t.
 

marbri

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Pulling in big audiences is not the same as making big money in the podcast world. Archetypes was frequently the number one podcast in its category but it's a podcast and it's only on Spotify.

Podcasts and other ways to make money from social media is an interest of mine so I read about it all the time. This is a good article from The Verge about Spotify and their podcast strategy and the mistakes they've made. It includes some discussion about the H&M deal but is mostly about Spotify (and podcasting), in general:


Some excerpts:


And about H&M's deal in particular

And other deals that didn't pan out:

IOW, the H&M deal isn't the only deal that didn't pan out for either party.

Criticism from the industry:

A lot of stuff about the Rogan deal including this:

To sum up: Spotify threw money at all sorts of people (and continues to as they just signed a deal with Trevor Noah) but the terms of the contracts were sometimes vague, they required exclusivity that limited the audience of the podcasts, they didn't support or market the podcasts properly, and mostly these deals haven't panned out for either them or the podcasters.

Rogan still makes them money (presumably) but that deal is not going to save them especially if he decides to take his ball and go home.

Nowhere in the various analysis I've read about what is going on at Spotify does it say that Archetypes was a bad podcast that couldn't keep an audience, btw. OTOH, the Verge article (and others) points out that when Obama & Springsteen did a podcast, it put people to sleep. :lol: And apparently, H&M aren't the only artists who didn't produce. Ava DuVernay didn't deliver even a single episode under her contract.

This is not to say that H&M aren't grifters or that their other ideas for podcasts were good and would also have had good audiences. It's just that they are part of a pattern with Spotify and their parting ways says as much about Spotify as it does about them.

I am way more interested in what becomes of their Netflix deal since Netflix seems to know what it is doing when it comes to original content. One would hope the contract was better designed and Netflix knew more about what they were going to get from it. Or that they didn't have to pay if nothing got produced. Signing artists to make content and then not getting that content happens in other entertainment industries like movies and music so I presume that companies have clauses for this and contingency plans and it factors into their deals.
Appreciate the insight.
I am still curious about the actual ratings/rankings data. Where does one find that? There is so much conflicting info out there so maybe some data freaks out there might help nail that one down.

As for podcasts putting people to sleep. As someone of a certain age where sleeping at night has become an issue I appreciate the tip on the Obama/Springsteen podcast. If anyone else needs tips I find Skating Lesson podcasts great for insomnia, when I am really struggling I pull one of those up, I am dead asleep before they ever finish ;)
 

MacMadame

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I am still curious about the actual ratings/rankings data. Where does one find that?
It's hard because Spotify doesn't have to release any numbers. I've seen numbers scattered throughout various articles but haven't found where they post their numbers or one source for every podcast Meghan did. It did win two awards though one of them was a People's Choice Award which does strengthen the idea that it was popular but also... :blah:
 

kwanfan1818

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Meghan has a lot more hustle than Harry, so she was able to get something out. Harry probably never really wanted to do it, so didn’t.
Her professional life and reputation was based on fulfilling contracts, and, as an actress, she'd be used to doing things she didn't like and having higher-ups, producers and directors, making changes that made something she was positive about and expected turn into something not-so-great. It sounds like for this.contract, they weren't paid for things they didn't deliver.
 

MacMadame

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So Harry and Megan are supposedly breaking up. No, it's William and Kate who are on the rocks. I'm so confused.

But what really confuses me is that Harry & Megan apparently have fans who have given themselves a name (“American Sussex squad”) and believe it is their job to "defend" H&M on Twitter. :yikes:

 

millyskate

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I have been deeply uncomfortable about much of Harry and Meghan's behaviour from the start and highly sceptical about many of their statements.
Now, it just all feels so sad. The constant hate by a certain fringe of the press is hard to see and there are no winners in the situation.
 

Karen-W

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So Harry and Megan are supposedly breaking up. No, it's William and Kate who are on the rocks. I'm so confused.

But what really confuses me is that Harry & Megan apparently have fans who have given themselves a name (“American Sussex squad”) and believe it is their job to "defend" H&M on Twitter. :yikes:

I think there is always going to be a certain subset of royal fans who will forever defend/support the Sussexes, no matter what. Just like there is a certain subset of Princess Diana fans who will never ever stop defending her and slamming Camilla.
 

MacMadame

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there are no winners in the situation.
I would agree with that. Some of us, who do not support the monarchy, were hopeful that they could shake things up a bit and maybe bring about some real and good changes but it's clear that isn't happening any time soon, if ever.

I am somewhat relieved to see that Harry isn't more hated than Andrew. That would be messed up.

I do wonder about the William/Kate rumors. I do understand that being inside a marriage isn't the same as being outside but William is the Prince now and future heir. I can't see him finding a better Princess/Queen than Kate. Maybe one just as good -- if he's lucky -- but definitely not better. Why throw that away?

From the day that Harry & Megan got engaged, I believed their chances of staying married until "death do us part" were below average (in the US, 75% of first marriages succeed so below that) but I never imagined William and Kate divorcing no matter what was going on between them.
 

Winnipeg

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I cannot imagine why William would even think about leaving Kate. She is the best monarch out there IMHO.

OTH, wrt Harry and Megan, I hope the rumor is not true but would be far less surprised thatn if W and K split.
 

Judy

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Part of my job is content selection. It often surprises me what kind of content people are willing to watch. And it's always a risk.
Meghan's podcast could have been a hit, it had potential. Perhaps something was not worked out, or perhaps the podcast simply was not so interesting to the public. Like I said, it's always a risk.
Spotify is struggling to make a profit though.
 

MLIS

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As the only youngish, visible female in the core royal family now, Kate is going to get the bulk of the media attention and made up rumours. I don’t think she’ll become the punching bag the way Meghan did (and Sarah before her, who was torn down regularly in comparison to Diana), but all of the tabloids are going to want her face on the cover every week, and the stories will get wilder and wilder. I wouldn’t believe any of the rumours, honestly. I do think K&W’s marriage is solid, that’s not to say there hasn’t been infidelity (I don’t know one way or the other, obviously) but they seem to be a solid unit and both see the benefits of whatever their arrangement is. I wouldn’t be shocked if H&M split, there has been a lot of pressure on and volatility in their union from the beginning, and I don’t think either of them has truly found what they thought they wanted.
 

ballettmaus

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From what I've read about Harry and Meghan, I sometimes wonder how healthy their marriage is. As in, was Harry really ready to get married from a mental health point of view? How mentally healthy is Harry actually? He still seems to be deeply troubled by everything he's been through. How common are their goals?

I do believe they love each other, though and their children seem to be everything to them, so I hope that the impression that it may not have been the right choice is due to the fact that they've been really bad at PR from the beginning and that it looks differently on the inside.
 

taf2002

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I do wonder about the William/Kate rumors. I do understand that being inside a marriage isn't the same as being outside but William is the Prince now and future heir. I can't see him finding a better Princess/Queen than Kate. Maybe one just as good -- if he's lucky -- but definitely not better. Why throw that away?
Maybe it will be Kate "throwing it away". Apparently William has some unpleasant parts of his personality. idk if it's true but if so & if he cheats maybe being queen someday won't be worth it.
 

MacMadame

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Maybe it will be Kate "throwing it away". Apparently William has some unpleasant parts of his personality. idk if it's true but if so & if he cheats maybe being queen someday won't be worth it.
The gossip I was responding to said he was consulting with a divorce attorney though. 🤷
 

Andora

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I severely doubt Will & Kate will divorce, at least not in the next 10-15 years. Kate is very smart & pragmatic, and while I think William is a bit less-so, he has to know his goals are best met with Kate vs. without. And I'd like to believe he wouldn't want his young children to have anything close to the experience he did. Will that still be true when their youngest moves out? Seems a long way off to guess.

I can't see Harry & Meghan splitting soon either, at least not if they're using their heads. Harry could absolutely go off script and decide to upend everything he initially upended his life for, but I don't see Meghan going down without a fight.
 

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