Coming out of the two slowest months of the year for advertising – January and February – the CPM paid for podcast advertising edged up slightly last month. Libsyn’s AdvertiseCast reports that for 60-second ads sold in its platform during March, buyers paid an average CPM of $22.19. That was one percent higher than a month earlier. While the ad market may be turning a corner with fewer worries about the overall economy, podcast CPMs remain lower than a year ago, however. AdvertiseCast says rates last month were five percent lower that March 2022.
For the first time since AdvertiseCast has been releasing monthly updates, podcasts with between 10,000 and 100,000 downloads have had the highest CPMs for two consecutive months. In March, the average was $23.76, up 13-cents month-to-month. Podcasts with fewer than 10,000 downloads have led the CPM rate during the past three years, but that segment’s average CPM was $23.08 in March – a slight uptick from February.
AdvertiseCast says shows with more than 100,000 downloads continue to have the lowest CPMs. That segment’s average rose one percent to $19.73 last month. The last time that segment of shows had three consecutive months of CPMs below $20 had been during 2020.
The podcast genre that had the highest CPMs during March was Technology at $26 – a one dollar drop from February’s average for the genre. Education remained the second most expensive with an average $25 CPM, the same as a month earlier. Business ranked third with a $24 average.
Yet for brands that do not need to be in any of those three show genres, AdvertiseCast says there remains bargains to be had for buyers whose budgets may be under pressure. It says podcasts in the Fiction, Games & Hobbies, and Arts genres each had average CPMs in the low-twenties during March.
AdvertiseCast bases the cost per thousand or CPM from actual sales data from about 2,900 podcasts in its marketplace, including more than 225 exclusive podcasts. While there are month-to-month fluctuations, it says the typical one-minute ad has a $25 CPM while a 30-second ad typically has an average $18 CPM. That is the same as a year ago.
“New research indicates that podcast and online audio listenership reached record highs in early 2023 — and podcast advertising spending is expected to reach upwards of $3 billion this year. The growth drivers combined with new advertising capabilities are attracting more creators, publishers, and brands to the medium,” said Dave Hanley, Chief Revenue Officer at Libsyn’s AdvertiseCast. “As we turn up the dial on the availability of automation and advanced targeting and measurement solutions, AdvertiseCast is well positioned to lead the industry into the next contextually relevant, cookieless ad era.”