General Motors is among blue chip advertisers looking to utilize podcasts to reach consumers, but its latest execution is more involved than the typical live-read ad. GM’s Buick brand provided Office Ladies podcast hosts Jenna Fisher and Angela Kinsey with a pair of Buick Envision SUVs to drive around for a few weeks—and then discuss their experience in a specially created bonus episode of the popular Earwolf series.
Titled “Monday Motivation,” the bonus episode was not all about Buick, however. It featured the pair talking about their friendship and their daily rituals, which led into how Buick Envision fit into their days. “Staying motivated and staying on top of what we need is important in making the most of a busy week. And the Envision really helped us out here,” Fisher told listeners in what in the end was a fairly traditional live-read ad execution (read a transcript HERE). It is a creative style that advertisers have long employed with radio personalities that are hired to talk up a product they either use or have been given.
Kate Hrabovsky, Buick Advertising and Media Operations Manager, told Mediapost that the brand teamed with Fisher and Kinsey as part of Buick’s effort to reach younger drivers, especially women. “Jenna and Angela brought the Buick brand and the technology-packed 2021 Envision to life so naturally for their audience, who is a perfect fit for Buick,” Hrabovsky said.
SXM Media says the “Monday Motivation” episode was downloaded more than 500,000 times during its first week. The show also posted video of their Buick test drive on its Instagram account with more than 145,000 views to date. Mediapost says it also conducted a Nielsen Podcast Ad Effectiveness study and found that Buick’s brand affinity scores had a significant bounce among people who listened to the episode, with many saying they were more likely to seek information about Buick.
Sarah van Mosel, Chief Revenue Officer at Stitcher/Midroll, told Podcast News Daily earlier this year that rather than steer marketers to produce their own branded shows, they often see better potential for success when they team with an existing show. “It is very hard to break through. Even celebrities who launch new podcasts have to have a concerted marketing effort to be found by podcast listeners,” she said. “What we often recommend are other integrated approaches, because if you deliver it into a waiting and existing audience that will be delighted by it, that’s when you win.”