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BizReport : Trends & Ideas : September 09, 2016

Ads in podcasts have massive reach, influence - but hard to measure

The power of podcasts has been revealed in recent research. Now, in the run up to the Interactive Advertising Bureau's second podcast event, new research reveals how podcasts affect the purchase intent of listeners.

by Helen Leggatt

Podcasts can have significant reach. Some shows, such as HowStuffWorks, are set to exceed 50 million monthly downloads across its six shows by 2018.

However, measurement beyond the download metric poses a major challenge for advertisers and is the main reason direct-response advertisers dominate the channel. Once a podcast is downloaded, which the majority are (when compared with streaming), the ability for data collection is severed.

Yet, podcasts are effective advertising channels. According to new research, released to coincide with the Interactive Advertising Bureau's second annual Podcast Upfront event, held in New York earlier this week, 95% of podcast listeners take action after listening to a spot. Furthermore, almost two-thirds (65%) are more willing to consider the purchase of a product or service that they hear about through a podcast and 60% prefer to purchase products from brands they discover via their favorite podcasts.

The IAB has also released a new set of podcast advertising guidelines.

Recent research from the7stars agency, conducted with Dax's Podcast Analysis, found that almost two-thirds of podcast listeners are happy for the audio experience to include ads, as long as the podcast itself is free. Around a third (34%) said they would be willing to pay for an ad-free podcast experience.

Another study, this time commissioned by Wondery and conducted by comScore, found that podcast consumption has been increasing over the past six months and 1 in 3 podcast listeners expect to consume more via the medium in the next six months.

The study also revealed listeners' attitudes towards advertising and found that podcasts "put consumers in a mindset that's favorable to ad receptivity". Two-thirds of podcast listeners have gone on to conduct research or engaged in purchase activity following hearing an ad played in a podcast.

Tags: advertising, audio, podcasts, trends

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