Any time a product or service is able to fully capture my loyalty and admiration I like to stop and ask why. So when I purchased a pair of MVMT sunglasses, shopped for a family set of Quip electric toothbrushes and found myself contemplating restocking my husband’s underwear drawer with Tommy John boxers all in the course of about three days recently, I knew I had been drawn in by some of the most effective advertising I’d seen in quite some time.
What’s the common thread among those products? They’re all regular advertisers on the podcasts of Crooked Media.
At this point it’s important for me to confess: I’m a podcast junkie. My feed includes 48 podcasts, and I add at least one a week. I regularly listen to podcasts on everything from politics to science to spirituality, but I’ve barely even scratched the surface of other popular categories like true crime, sports and pop culture. I am a super fan, and that has clearly started showing up in my purchasing habits.
I’m not alone. The audience for podcasts is:
Big, and getting bigger. 48 million Americans listen to podcasts weekly, more than five times the number who go to the movies.
Dedicated. The average listener takes in seven podcasts a week, and 14 percent of the audience listens to 11 or more.
Engaged. Eighty percent of people listen to at least half of each podcast, and more than a third listen to the entire episode.
Marketers have taken note of this audience and are going after it in a big way. Advertisers are expected to spend $316 million on podcast ads in 2018 – a one-year increase of 30 percent. That’s a drop in the bucket compared to the $18 billion that is projected to be spent on radio advertising, but there is no question that a growing number of brands are finding podcast advertising to be an important part of the advertising mix. Who wouldn’t want to advertise in a medium where 63 percent of listeners said they bought a product or service after hearing it advertised?
So what is the secret sauce?
Something for everyone. There are half a million podcasts covering an incredible range of topics. That gives advertisers the ability to target an audience based on some very specific interests.
Engaging ads. Marketers haven’t just found the right audience via podcasts – they’ve also found the right voice. Some podcast ads (including the Crooked Media spots that have hooked me) are freewheeling riffs on a product that are as entertaining as the podcast itself. Others have adopted podcasting’s storytelling style, drawing listeners into vignettes about the people and businesses using their products. And some brands have taken that a step further, creating their own podcasts built around themes closely tied to their products and services.
Passionate listener communities. The podcast audience doesn’t just download a 60-minute episode once or twice a week. They buy tickets to live tapings, interact with hosts on social media, and buy all kinds of merchandise that identifies them as members of a podcast tribe. Advertising that can connect their brands to these dedicated listeners stand to win big.
Podcasting is definitely still a niche marketing channel, but its reach is growing by the minute. If your brand is looking to reach an educated, affluent audience in the 18 to 34 demographic, you should take a look at integrating podcasts into your marketing mix. We can help with a strategy for that; and if you’re not quite ready to dive in and need a recommendation on some good podcasts to familiarize you with the form, just let me know. I can recommend a dozen or two.