Host-read ads have been the cornerstone of podcasting’s monetization efforts for years and new research from Nielsen reinforces that strategy. In findings released today (Oct. 21) from its Podcast Ad Effectiveness survey, Nielsen says ads that hosts read drive more brand recall than non-host-read ads.
Specifically, Nielsen found that 71% of respondents recalled the advertised brand after hearing a host-read podcast ad compared to 62% of those who heard a non-host read ad.
In addition, host-read ads outperformed non-host-read ads in causing listeners to seek more information about a product. Host-read ads also produced an average 50% increase in purchase and recommendation intent among listeners when compared against non-host-read ads.
The host-read podcast ads also outperformed announcer ads across a range of other brand lift metrics. They produced a 33% greater lift in familiarity, a 67% higher increase in affinity, 60% greater intent to seek out information about the product or service being advertised and 50% better recommendation intent.
The findings are based on 260 surveys Nielsen has conducted across 240 brands. The research involves presenting listeners with podcasts clips and assessing their engagement vs. those not exposed across an array of key brand metrics and content measures.
Apart from podcast ads driving significant brand lift, data from Nielsen’s Podcast Buying Power service shows the U.S. podcast listener base has been growing at a 20% compound annual growth rate since 2014, and is projected to double by 2023. The advertiser-coveted adults 25-44 demo is driving much of that growth. For example, nearly 30% of adults 25-34 listen to podcasts.
This and other research has Nielsen forecasting that that podcast engagement is on track to post another record year. Amidst the pandemic, it also shows the medium is not reliant on the workday commute to thrive.
“Podcast engagement in the audio space stands out much like streaming stands out in the video space, providing an ever-expanding array of options while growing the amount of time consumers spend each day with media,” Nielsen says in a new insights piece. “The big difference in the podcast space is the engagement with advertising.”