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Branded Content Surging, Building Authentic Multicultural Ads, & more

Branded Content Surging, Building Authentic Multicultural Ads, & more

February 13, 2024

Podcast Consumers Engage With Social Media And Listen To Episodes Within A Day Of Release by Lauren Vetrano

Back in October, Cumulus Media and Signal Hill retained MARU/Matchbox to conduct a survey of 608 weekly podcast consumers for the Fall 2023 edition of the Podcast Download report. This week Lauren Vetrano looks at the data as it relates to how podcast consumers interact with their favorite shows on social media. 56% of respondents follow their favorite podcast hosts on social media, with a higher bias when zoomed in on younger demographics (up to 68% for respondents 18-34). Weekly podcast consumers have a tendency to quickly find episodes and listen, with 67% of respondents listening to their favorite programs within a day of release. When narrowed to heavy podcast consumers (over 6 hours of content a week), that number jumps to 76%. [Source]

Most publishers grew their ad offerings last year, with a focus on branded content

Digiday Research surveyed over 300 publishing professionals in Q4 of last year. Of those surveyed, 56% grew their ad products last year, with a good portion of that growth being attributed to branded content. 58% of respondents said their companies added branded content this year, making it the top category of new ad product added last year for respondents. For a podcast perspective we reached out to Shannon Martin, Podcast Strategist at Lower Street for comment. “We continue to see growth both in use of branded content and in greater sophistication in how it’s being deployed. That trend appears set to continue as evidenced by the overwhelming response to our recent Brand Podcast Summit, both in terms of attendance and engagement. 37% of attendees were directors or higher level managers, and 21% were company founders; 65% had existing branded podcasts they were adding to or growing, and the rest intended to launch a brand podcast this year.” Branded content is no new addition to podcasting, but in recent months the industry has become more vocal about its capabilities. [Source]

Authentic Multicultural Narratives Create True Diversity in Audio Advertising by Antonio Francisco Lewis

Audio’s secret weapon is its intimacy and authenticity, something Studio Resonate Multicultural Creative Director Antonio Francisco Lewis stresses is especially important for audio advertising. Among other issues, audio advertising runs into the challenge of communicating diversity while not veering into stereotype. A person with a broad Standard American English accent could very well be of Latino heritage. Creating an authentic multicultural ad creative requires more than leaning on ethnolects to communicate intended demographic, including having creative directors working on the creative that have the right backgrounds to understand the nuance required to communicate with the intended audience. [Source]

Subscriptions, Not an Endangered Species

In response to a report last week from Axios claiming premium subscriptions are fading away, publishers are pushing back. While news publishers in particular are struggling to find footing in a world where advertisers are avoiding hard news, subscriptions are not the issue. As AdExchanger note, publishers with strong subscriber bases tend to outperform those who more heavily rely on ad revenue, such as The Economist, Bloomberg, and The Financial Times. Further evidence for the health of premium subscriptions is its healthy growth in podcasting as more platforms offer premium subscription offerings than ever. [Source]

SiriusXM to Lay Off 160 Employees, About 3% of Workforce

The layoffs were announced in a memo on Monday from CEO Jennifer Witz. She writes the move aims to make the company more efficient and flexible. The writeup includes a spreadsheet of major company layoffs sorted by date and lists what was downsized. [Source]

Research Database Snapshot

Source: The PPB Q4 2023

What it says: Podcasting outperforms streaming audio by up to 80%.

What it means: Listeners who hear an ad on a podcast are much more likely to visit the advertiser’s site and buy something than those who hear ads on streaming audio services.

Why it’s cool: We talk a lot about podcasts being more “lean-forward” and keeping listeners’ attention – these data show this translates to brands, too!