By Garrison Dua, VP of Demand at AdsWizz
As of December 2021, over two million podcasts were available worldwide for listening and downloading. With the growth of podcasts, more and more content creators are finding unique ways to engage with their audience, regardless of the topic niche. The meteoric growth of podcast audiences is matched in ad spend – AA/WARC predicts that global audio ad spend on podcasts will reach $1.6 billion by the end of 2022. But for advertisers are successful in tapping into this huge market, podcast advertising needs to become more targeted at the episode level, rather than on a general genre basis.
Targeting has traditionally been tricky in the podcast space, as podcasts are divided into broad genre-based categories (e.g. comedy, music, sports, etc.), which don’t fully reflect the niche topics covered in every show and even every episode.
As new categories of podcasts are created, advertisers have fewer and fewer opportunities to identify general podcasts. That’s why podcasts need to be categorized at the episode level to be targeted accurately.
For example, the wildly popular “Stuff You Should Know” podcast, hosted by Josh Clark and Chuck Bryant, appears in the broad “society and culture” category, but each episode covers different topics, from Christmas cards to the Nobel Peace Prize. . With this type of podcast, advertisers could miss out on valuable targeting opportunities by genre rather than by episode, which would be more accurate.
Context is king in audio advertising
For advertisers, finding the right podcast information for targeting is crucial to ensuring there is a match between content and ad. This not only helps provide a seamless and relevant listening experience for podcast lovers, but also prevents the brand from being associated with controversial content, which forces listeners to move away, not only from the podcast , but worse – from the brand itself.
Advertisers are used to not being able to reach podcast listeners at scale, often having to create campaigns on a show-by-show basis that doesn’t take into account every component of the podcast. The question of category is not the only thing that matters; the tone and guests, along with the time, place and mood of the listener determine the likelihood that an ad will receive the attention and active engagement it deserves.
However, with today’s contextual targeting solutions, brands now have the ability to access precise, accurate, and comprehensive information about podcasts and context, improving both targeting and brand safety at scale.
How does enhanced targeting work?
Listening to every podcast, let alone every episode, is not a viable option; but with AI transcription technology and automated categorization, solutions have been created to transcribe these conversations from audio to text, giving advertisers the ability to target listeners by keywords, concepts, topics and interests. in podcasts. This way, advertisers can now ensure that they are aware of the essence of the content and the general tone of the conversation held during each episode. The in-depth analysis derived from targeting solutions allows advertisers to select the most suitable advertisements, in a transparent way.
If used correctly, targeted segmentation means there’s no more frustration from listeners hearing an ad that’s completely irrelevant to them or the podcast they’re listening to. For the brand, having access to information from multiple episodes will give them a better opportunity to more precisely target their preferred audience to deliver ads that are tailored to them, giving listeners the feeling that the ad content is as personal to them as the show that it is. they broadcast. enjoy.
When listeners feel like advertising content is targeted specifically at them, engagement and response rates increase. According to the 2021 Super Listeners Report, 76% of podcast listeners said they took action after hearing a podcast ad, which could include visiting a site, making a purchase, or signing up for a subscription. subscription.
Being able to identify what device your audience is listening on, the time, date and location where the listening is taking place, among other key metrics, are great assets that advertisers can use to personalize their audio ads. Technology can also help analyze moods that influence buying interest. With these details about your listener, you are not only presenting relevant advertising to your audience, making them more likely to react and engage, but you are also offering an extension of the content they came for – perceived content. as informative, non-intrusive, and ideally as a discovery tool.
To achieve such good results with podcast ads, ad professionals need to go beyond traditional targeting metrics to make decisions not just about podcast listener insights, but also targeting metrics. enhanced based on podcast niche categories.
Enable brand safety with granular insights
Podcasts have been in the spotlight recently, with headlines relating to the controversy surrounding Joe Rogan, famed host of ‘The Joe Rogan Experience’ podcast, who has been accused of spreading misinformation about Covid-19 vaccines in a recent episode. Despite the controversial episode, the Joe Rogan Saga is the perfect example of a podcast series that would normally be considered dangerous, but actually covers a wide variety of episode-level topics, covering everything from politics to media criticism to cage fighting. , psychedelics and even quantum mechanics. With a show format like Rogan’s, many episode opportunities are created that brands may want to target.
Once advertisers have access to contextual and content metrics information, they have an advantage in ensuring brand safety at the show and episode level, with show content transcribed and analyzed for red flags that advertisers can exploit in a brand. -safe manner.
There are targeting solutions available today that have the ability to generate issue-level transparency reports, giving a security edge for brands where transparency is a tipping point, especially those who are hesitant to enter the podcasting space.
Podcast targeting segments powered by AI transcription technology allow advertisers to target or steer away from specific content to ensure brand safety and enable more contextual understanding of content mood and sentiment .
As podcast advertising is expected to grow over the next four to five years, it’s critical that advertisers achieve the efficiencies needed to operate in a secure brand environment. Advertisers have the ability to develop a better understanding of this unique market and take advantage of its opportunities, provided they arm themselves with the right technological solutions that harness the power of audio.