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AI Is Making Ad Creation Faster. Early Studies Show It’s Also Having An Impact On Results.

As podcasters and marketers look at artificial intelligence to streamline their business operations, one strategy already in use is in the production of audio ads. Claritas is working with marketers to use generative AI to rapidly produce a large number of ads. While still early on, the data shows that the AI-generated ads not only allow for dozens of ad versions to be crafted in little time, but the results of more personalized ads hold promise for marketers.

Working with Progressive insurance, Claritas used a synthetic voice to create 96 ads that ran across a two-week period. “It normally takes them about 22 weeks to create three audio ads the old way,” said Erik Lundberg, Chief Growth Officer at Claritas. Speaking at the IAB Podcast Upfront, he said the ads were not only created more efficiently, but by using AI they were able to boost Progressive’s performance. The campaign resulted in a 137% incremental lift in listeners seeking insurance quotes. And there was a 60% lift when AI optimization was added. That is when during a running campaign Claritas uses AI to optimize the audience and further refine the targeting to give a campaign a significant boost.

Claritas has also developed an AI Personalization technology that optimizes the voice and music for the listeners, as well as the script. Lundberg explained that both he and his senior-citizen mother are in the market for an exercise bicycle, but the ads they will hear will be different.

“It’s a different announcer that’s going to appeal to us, with different aspects of the product — and it takes performance to the next level,” Lundberg said. “This is future proofed as well, since it does not rely on cookies,” he added.

In a campaign with an allergy medicine company, Claritas says AI Personalization led to a 197% increase in the performance of the ads versus randomized creative. That led to 18,780 leads generated for the advertiser, and 3,785 doctor appointments booked.

To make podcast advertising more appealing to marketers, Claritas now has a dashboard that puts data about audio into a consolidated dashboard so brands and agencies can track an ad’s performance.

“We can uncover new channels for you that perform really well and are brand safe that you didn’t know before,” Lundberg said.

Juliana Roding, Executive VP of Advanced Analytics at Horizon Next, says bringing data from various media into a single dashboard allows her agency to measure different and distinct channels together in a single model to better understand which are driving ad conversion rates. And that is proving to be a net positive for audio.

“We can actually look within the podcast ecosystem specifically, and see which tactics are driving better response rates so we can drive even further value for our clients with very tactical and granular level optimizations,” she said. “Historically, podcasting and streaming audio had been measured in a silo. And this made it very difficult for us to protect the budget or scale the channel, especially when we’re facing budget cuts. By bringing the data into our intersect model, through a closed loop model, we were able to look at all the channels alongside one another. And what this was able to do is show how much value podcasting and streaming audio have.”

In a case study done by Horizon Next with the online dating site eHarmony, the data showed that the audio channels drove a 40% higher registration rate than if those dollars were reinvested into video during their peak time.

“Now we’re really able to give the clients the confidence they need to really start scaling,” Roding said. “A lot of our clients are really relying on measurement. They’re so performance minded, even if they know their audience is listening to podcasts, they really won’t start investing there without having the measurement.”

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