The podcast industry is continuing to grow by leaps and bounds. The most recent numbers show that audiences are tuning in to more podcasts more often, and podcast advertising is even the most recalled type of ad, with 86% of respondents saying they remember seeing or hearing advertisements through a podcast.
Even though podcast advertising is here to stay, there are still some challenges advertisers face. For example, as podcast advertising grows, you might question just how effective podcast advertisements will be in the coming months. Will the market become too oversaturated? Is it too late to get started? How do you actually get started?
Here we will discuss potential barriers to podcast advertising, what you can expect with podcast advertising trends this year, and our tips to maximize podcast advertising tactics in your brand’s overall digital advertising strategy.
Podcast Advertising Trends
Podcast audiences are loyal. Whether they have listened since the first episode or binge-listened to every episode upon discovering it, podcast audiences are committed to keeping up with their favorite shows.
Even with loyal listeners, podcast monthly listener numbers have grown to approximately 116 million Americans. This data indicates that current listeners aren’t turning to other platforms and that new listeners are being drawn in as new high-value and unique shows enter the podcast market.
As this area continues to grow and diversify, there will be more opportunities to reach niche customers and more memorable ways to engage with them. The most important thing to note for podcast advertising is that this platform is almost entirely about quality rather than quantity. There is no need to invest in top-charting podcasts; instead, take the time to find the shows your target audience is listening to and invest there. Ultimately, now is the time to home in on an effective podcast advertising strategy for your target audience.
Challenges of Podcast Advertising
Such a fast-growing industry is bound to have challenges, especially as the world of digital advertising continues to adapt and evolve. With podcast advertising, the main challenges can be summed up into three categories: measurement, format, and production.
Measurement: Fragmented Measurement and Targeting
There continues to be some confusion and concern about how podcast ads are measured and accurately attributed to show success. It is a heavily siloed environment with consumers listening on phones, computers, smart speakers, and cars across different streaming platforms, including Spotify, Apple Podcasts, and YouTube. As a result, it can be overwhelming to attribute, analyze, and apply analytics from different advertising buys to build an effective strategy.
Format: Balancing Host-Read Podcast Ads and Pre-Recorded Ads
The success of podcast advertising is most directly associated with host-read podcast ads. Consumers feel a personal connection to the host and trust their recommendations. However, host-read ads are more expensive and can date themselves quickly. For example, catching up on a favorite podcast could result in hearing an advertisement with a now-expired code. The solution that bridges this gap? Programmatic pre-recorded ads.
Pre-recorded ads offer more flexibility, control, and variety. But it is critical to balance those benefits with the authenticity and personalization of host-read podcast ads. As more podcasts work to successfully incorporate creative ad formats that also allow for dynamic insertion, the more easily advertisers can jump into programmatic podcast advertising.
Production: Establishing the Basics
Many advertisers face challenges when getting started. While most other forms of digital advertising rely on visual elements that can be repurposed for different sizes and ad placements, podcast advertisements come with a list of questions that are harder to answer, especially in an ever-changing environment. What are the minimums? How often are creative components switched out?
Figuring out the logistics of podcast advertising causes a halt in the creative process many advertisers are familiar with. As a result, advertisers might be hesitant to jump in because of the confusion around who to partner with to create an effective advertisement and where to do it.
Maximizing Your Podcast Advertising
Even with the challenges of implementing a new digital advertising tactic, the benefits of podcast advertising outweigh the challenges when done correctly. Here are a few things to keep in mind when creating your podcast advertising strategy:
1. Utilize measurement and attribution solutions to quantify your investment.
As with any digital advertising method, it is critical to accurately track and analyze the results of your ads to better strategize marketing efforts as a whole. The variety of streaming devices and podcast platforms make this process somewhat tricky but not impossible.
Whether you’re already investing in podcast advertising or just getting started, be sure to look into resources that can track conversions across multiple devices, measure the impact of ads across multiple devices, and gain a holistic view of the consumer journey and behavior.
Digilant tip: When deciding who to partner with for podcast advertising buys, consider their attribution capabilities and partnerships. At Digilant, we enable advertisers to track conversions across multiple devices and gain accurate insights into your campaigns’ performance — no matter the platform or device the ads are played on.
2. Lean into creative, entertaining, and memorable messaging.
Dynamic audio creates a more engaging experience for podcast listeners. Experiment with testing two or more audio spots and leveraging dynamic audio to learn what messaging resonates with the audience and create more messages tailored to them.
Digilant tip: For longer campaigns, consider swapping out audio every few months and featuring product releases or seasonal promotions.
3. Keep frequency in mind.
Digital audio advertising offers a focused one-to-one connection; therefore, the frequency at which your ad is heard is essential. The goal is to be memorable but not annoying. A good balance for this purpose is a frequency of three to five times a week. Opt for higher frequency if you’re promoting a new brand or a time-sensitive offer. Alternatively, long campaigns and well-established brands should aim for a lower frequency.
Digilant tip: Repurpose current traditional radio messaging for a more consistent message delivery across multiple media platforms.
Break Into Podcast Advertising With the Help of Digilant
Podcast advertising is going to continue picking up speed and traction. These trends mean that now is the perfect time to build a podcast advertising strategy that maximizes your brand’s impact and reaches your target audience where they are.
Ready to dive into the world of podcast advertising? Connect with our Digilant team today. We’d be happy to help!