Look around the next time you are commuting on public transportation, in an airport, or an office environment. With the prevalence of smartphones, wireless headphones, and smart speakers, you will quickly notice that we are in a new age of audio and a ripe opportunity for audio advertising. While it might be the golden age of radio ads, programmatic audio advertising enables the ability to reach highly engaged audiences through their streaming services.
Over the last several years, we have seen the growing popularity of audio media, including podcasts or streaming radio and music. Consumers are spending more of their time in this digital medium at a surprising rate. According to an eMarketer study, more than three-quarters of US internet users will listen to digital audio formats like podcasts and streaming music at least once a month this year. Podcast listeners account for a much smaller portion of the US internet population (26.9 percent), but this audience is growing the fastest. And 30.8 percent of digital audio listeners will access that content via a smart speaker.
Let’s get started.
What is audio advertising?
Programmatic audio advertising is automated selling and insertion of ads in audio content like podcasts, digital radio, and streaming music services by leveraging programmatic audio-specific publishers like Spotify, Triton, AdsWizz, and TargetSpot. This audio content can be streamed on a variety of devices like desktop, mobile phones, over-the-top televisions, and smart speakers.
Similar to other programmatic advertising channels, audio advertising allows you to layer on other targeting tactics to reach relevant geolocations and target audiences based on your digital advertising strategy.
Audio advertising is an ideal tactic for brands looking to reach a broad audience, particularly for telecom, CPG, and retail industries and for awareness campaigns with a reach goal since there are limitations on clicking within some audio ad environments.
But wait, what do I need?
Audio ads are relatively easy to create or hire voiceover talent. You will need a 30-second ad in the accepted audio file formats of MP3, M4A, and WAV. For a 30-second ad, aim for between 55-75 words and try to keep your pace even throughout. More importantly, make sure you provide a clear call-to-action. According to Spotify, ads with a direct call-to-action have ~3x higher click-through rates than those with none. At the very least, you can prompt the listener to do something, like saying to “tap to find a location” or “visit mywebsite.com/audio.”
Some publishers allow for companion banners to show during the audio ads, so if you have display creative that fits with your message, make sure to include it. The delivery of companion banners is not guaranteed, but it can be an added value.
Please be aware of these specs when creating your ad.
Why audio advertising?
Unlike traditional radio advertising, programmatic audio advertising enables data-driven targeting to reach audiences that extend beyond display or video advertising campaigns. Marketers will look for more ways to include audio advertising in their marketing strategies as consumers shift from radio to music-streaming environments. This shift is happening now; the average United States adult will spend more time listening to digital audio than listening to the radio in 2020 (a difference of 4.4 minutes).
Beyond consumers’ listening habits, with many music-streaming services offering a subscription service to remove ads and few consumers willing to pay to remove ads, marketers have wised up to this opportunity. According to a Forrester Research study, 28 percent of U.S. online adults and 17 percent of European online adults stream music on their desktop or mobile phones. Only six percent of U.S. online adults are willing to pay to access streaming online radio services, and five percent are willing to pay to access streaming on-demand radio services.
The increase in consumers’ listening habits and inventory creates a massive opportunity for marketers to reach highly targeted and unique listeners with audio advertising.
Audio advertising metrics
Campaign and ad group performance metrics can help determine the progress of your audio advertising campaigns, what’s working well, and what needs to change. Audio advertising offers the standard metrics we track in display advertising like impressions, clicks, click-through rate, cost-per-click, etc.
However, some of the metrics in audio advertising are quite different from the metrics we track in display advertising.
To dig a little deeper, clicks only occur if someone is streaming-audio with a publisher or SSP that enables clicks. Therefore, click-through rate and post-click conversions should not be your primary metrics. Conversion tracking would be limited to view-through conversions, like completion rate and cost-per-view.
What you can track, however, is based on their engagement with the ad itself by using Player 25% Complete, Player 50 Percent Complete, Player 75% Complete, Player Completed Views, and Player Completion Rate.
It’s not a matter of if, but when, streaming-audio will become the preferred method over traditional radio. Get a jump start on your connected audio advertising strategies today.
Want to learn more about running audio advertising in Choozle?