Media agencies reveal pain points of audio advertising
Image: Mohammad Metri on Unsplash
Almost 70% of media agencies now see streaming digital audio advertising as a significant or regular part of their activity, and 36% report the same for podcast advertising.
The figures emerged in the IAB’s Audio Advertising State of the Nation report, which also identified the pain points and issues which are stopping agencies and buyers from spending more in this space.
The report noted that audio can miss out on wider integrated campaigns because audio advertising is often planned and bought in siloed teams. The research found only 56% of agencies plan and buy digital audio collaboratively with digital display activity, and 53% plan and buy in combination with digital video.
Another pain point discovered by the report was that one third of agencies still don’t tailor their creative to suit different audio environments when running campaigns across different broadcast and digital audio advertising options.
“A third of media agencies are not tailoring creative to suit different audio environments when running campaigns across different broadcast and digital audio advertising options,” the IAB said, noting this has not improved over the past year. “Creative quality is one of the most important drivers of digital advertising effectiveness so it’s worth putting effort into adapting creative to suit the different audio environments.”
The IAB said there is an opportunity to enhance advertisers’ branding with the medium, with only 38% of media agencies consistently using brand voice as an asset.
It also pointed to Kantar research which showed campaigns in which creative is customised to the medium and creative elements are integrated well will, on average, deliver 57% higher brand effectiveness results.
Effectiveness and branding came up again in the report, when it noted there is also a disconnect between campaign aims and post-campaign analysis. The report found building brand awareness is the predominant objective of streaming digital audio and podcast advertising (82% and 73% respectively). Despite this, just 34% of media agencies are using brand metrics to assess the performance of brand awareness with their digital audio campaigns.
“According to media agencies, the lack of effectiveness and measurement/ standardised metrics remain the top opportunities for audio advertising to drive a larger share of advertising,” the research said.
A number of voices in the research called for more case studies of effectiveness and more consistent and uniform measurement in audio advertising.
The research also found the digital audio sector had benefited from making its inventory increasingly available via programmatic channels, which it said gave buyers “greater control over their investments”.
62% of media agencies have now used ads within streaming services (up from 51% last year), while 63% have used ads within live radio streams (up from 48%).
Radio also improved, with 93% of media agency respondents saying the medium is a significant part of activity or regularly considered, up from 85% in 2019 and 88% in 2018.
With podcast advertising more specifically, the most popular categories for agency investment are news, followed by society & culture and then business.
The IAB Australia’s CEO, Gai Le Roy, noted the changes over the past half decade.
“When we started the Audio State of the Nation Research five years years ago, digital streaming and podcasting advertising didn’t sit in either traditional or digital budgets. Today, we are seeing an increase in the amount of agencies planning and/or buying their broadcast radio and streaming audio in an integrated manner, however with the increase in programmatic investment across all channels, there is still room for audio investment to be baked into cross digital programmatic campaigns,” she said.
The research involved 222 completed surveys by decision makers and influencers of marketing spend across audio advertising campaigns.