National Public Radio has made a foray into previously unknown territory: commercial radio. The pubcaster umbrella organization has struck a deal with iHeartMedia that will enable member stations to stream content via the iHeartRadio digital platform.
“As part of our commitment to meeting audiences wherever they may be, this agreement provides another option for audiences to find public radio on their preferred listening platforms,” said Managing Director of NPR Digital Services Stephanie Miller.
According to a press release, the partnership currently applies to more than 260 stations and will not only have the potential to expand NPR’s listening audience (appeal to millennials, perhaps?), but it will also offer stations a new source of funding. Member stations that choose to participate will be allowed to use 50% of the banner ad inventory on their iHeartRadio station’s landing page. Those ads can be used to prompt listeners to donate to their favorite stations.
On its own, NPR already has a fairly robust digital presence. In addition to numerous podcasts and online streaming, there’s the NPR One app and many individual member stations, networks and shows offer their own apps.