The Future Of Podcast Advertising


In 2018, podcast advertising generated around $402 million in revenue and it’s expected to hit around $659 million by 2020.

Even though podcasts have exploded in popularity over the past few years, it’s still growing at an insane rate and isn’t showing any signs of slowing down.

Podcast Infographic from Podcast Insights

2019 US Podcast Stats & Facts Infographic BY Podcast Insights

But does podcast marketing and advertising actually produce results?

Well, as with any form of advertising, it will come down to how you use it, but early research would suggest it could be the next advertising force to be reckoned with.

In fact, according to studies by the team at Spotify, they found a phenomenal 81% of listeners said they’d taken action after hearing audio ads during a podcast! 

How Does Podcast Advertising Work?

Podcast advertising is typically delivered natively in the form of several breaks during the episode as you’ll see in the snippet below from Marketing Dive

How Does Podcast Advertising Work - Marketing Dive

This can very depending on the podcast but this is a typical example of the kind of structure you might expect to see.

How Do You Find the Right Podcast To Advertise On & Make A Deal?

The typical approach to podcast advertising has been to go through an agency or deal directly with the podcast host/comapny to organise a deal.

You’ll want to take some time thinking about or researching podcasts that would be a good fit for your brand and have a similar audience.

Once you’ve identified the podcasts you’d like to partner with, you’ll need to agree on the fees.

This will usually be charged on a cost per impression basis or per thousand impression basis depending on the audience size and reach.

In a nutshell, you’ll be charged for each time somebody listens to an episode your advert has been featured on.

How Do You Track Podcast Advertising Results & ROI?

This is usually done in the form of offering a special link or discount code in a call-to-action after the ad.

For example if we wanted to advertise on the “Marketing Daily” podcast, we might give their listeners a link to visit like:

Alternatively, if you run an e-commerce store for example, you may want to give a special coupon code which can be tracked each time somebody redeems it.

This way you can directly attribute the sales to the podcasts and measure returns over time.

What Makes Podcast Advertising Effective?

Whilst strategies like PPC Advertising are by no means dead, they are becoming significantly more saturated. As a result, the average CPC (cost-per-click) is constantly increasing which in turns reduces the overall profitability of a campaign.

Also, with an estimated 30% of all internet users actively using some form of ad blocker now, it’s evident that people are actively turning away from traditional advertising methods.

The power from podcast advertising comes in the ability to not only tap into the intention and mindset of the listener, but to also leverage the trust they have with the host.

It’s the same reason influencer marketing can be so effective.

People would rather take the word of someone they trust, than being told something by the company themselves.

What’s The Future Of Podcast Advertising?

Up until now, podcast advertising has been a relatively manual process involving finding and arranging a deal with your podcast of choice.

It has also been difficult to quantify the fees and relative performance for the same reason.

However, Music & Podcast Streaming Service Spotify, recently announced Spotify Podcast Ads, which could really change things up!

Spotify Podcast Ads using Streaming Ad Insertion (SAI)

They will be utilising technology called Streaming Ad Insertion (SAI) which will allow them to easily insert and track ads on relevant podcasts and measure performance.

Here’s just a few of the featured listed on their Spotify For Brands page

It will also open up a range of new insights and simple delivery options as seen in the screenshot above.

This will open to a much wider market over the next few years, allowing users to easily search for their ideal audience through a range of different targeting options.

We’re excited to see where this goes and as always, we’ll keep you updated of the latest developments in this space.

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Tom Peyton
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