Guide to Programmatic Advertising on Podcasts

In our previous blog posts, we discussed how digital audio advertising is a hidden gold mine for marketers, 5 tips for effective digital audio advertising, and the top 5 monetization tactics for digital audio publishers 

In today’s blog post, we will dive into programmatic advertising on podcasts.  

As podcast advertising matures and scales, it is proving to be an increasingly effective and cost-efficient advertising channel. Globally, brands are realizing this and are shifting their ad spend to podcasts for the following reasons:  

  •  Majority of podcasts are free for listeners and available on multiple platforms 
  •  There are no ad blockers 
  •  Low fraud activity 
  •  Great podcasts keep listeners coming back for more 
  •  Podcasts reach a wide range of audiences across different formats, genres, and demographics 
  •  Listeners are highly engaged in a closed environment 

In general, audio and podcast ads do not compete for attention and break through the clutter.  

Today’s modern podcast advertising ecosystem allows for dynamic ad insertion through programmatic buying, and no longer relies on manual ‘baked-in’ ads.  

Here are 5 important tips when running programmatic audio ads on podcasts:  Harness the power of contextual targeting 

Podcasts are natively contextual, so it is recommended that you consider who you want to target with your ads. Ideally, you will want to align your brand with podcasts that have a similar profile as your consumers, for example, outdoor enthusiasts. This is how you will be able to reach the right listeners at the right time, while building brand affinity.  

For reference, Triton Digital has a guide for contextual targeting within our marketplace. 

Spend more for quality inventory 

If there are specific podcasts with an audience that matches your campaign target, you should consider prioritizing your ads to deliver against those audiences. Instead of casting a wide net, why not focus on a handful of podcasts by using a targeted PMP (Private Marketplace), where publishers make their inventory and audience available to a select number of advertisers. The additional CPM invested with a PMP will improve your ad’s effectiveness. At Triton Digital we have multiple publisher measurement tools that can help to provide listener audience data such as our Podcast Rankers and advertising forecasting to help you scope out just the right podcasts for your campaign.  

Go light on targeting 

Podcasts do not scale as much as other programmatic channels, so we recommend keeping your targeting light, staying within language, specific show formats, geo, and ad position parameters (pre-roll, mid-roll, etc.). In other words, the ad needs to target the relevant podcasts to the intended audience, instead of casting a wide net. 

Have the right creative 

Always consider the listener’s headspace and environment as they are listening to their favorite show, and how your ad can fit into that experience. Get the right language, voiceover, script, and make sure your brand and product are the right fit. Remember most listeners are on the move or using smart speakers. Audio creatives support a variety of durations. For access to most inventory, use a duration of 15 or 30 seconds. Incorporate audio elements and storytelling techniques that transport the listener through sound. Use simple background music that sets an emotional tone and does not compete with the voiceover. Give listeners a chance to learn more with a direct call to action to drive higher engagement rates. 

Get the right reporting 

Programmatic DSPs can provide you with real-time reporting so you can easily optimize your campaign spending. Be sure you have the right tools at hand and that you are checking on your campaign pacing and delivery. Your DSP should be able to align with your goals and provide you with the tools and metrics to track and optimize your campaign performance. 

In 2022 there were more than two million active podcasts around the world with 424.2 million listeners tuning in. Increased demand for audio content has driven the explosive growth of podcasts, unlocking new opportunities for brands to be part of the conversation. The world of podcasting has really changed in the last 5 years due mostly to smartphones allowing listeners to easily subscribe, download, and listen to their favorite podcast shows. Reach a tuned-in audience with podcast advertising and leave a lasting impression.  

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