As ad-supported music streaming surges in the US as the fastest-growing form of digital advertising, digital media experts are looking to deploy audio ads across a variety of content types, according to results from an Integral Ad Science survey [download page]. Overall, 93% of the respondents surveyed – hailing from advertisers/brands, ad tech, publishers, and agencies – are likely to use a form of digital audio advertising.
The most popular context for audio ads is streamed music, with 81% of respondents being likely or very likely to use audio ads in that context. Next up is online radio (79%), followed by podcasts (77%), which are capturing a larger share of digital audio ad spending.
The platforms most likely to benefit from these ad spending plans are Spotify and YouTube Music, as 53% and 52% of ad buyers, respectively, plan to buy ads on those platforms in the coming year. At least one-third also plan purchases on Amazon Music (43%), Google Podcasts (36%) and Pandora (33%).
Programmatic Digital Audio Ads
Overall, 73% of digital media experts say that their organization transacts and fulfills audio ads programmatically, compared to 57% who engage in direct buying and selling. This skew is consistent no matter the respondent’s sector, whether it be Publishers (93% and 67%, respectively), Ad Buyers (68% and 62%, respectively), or Ad Tech (64% and 33%, respectively).
As far as the benefits of programmatic advertising in digital audio, respondents were most enthusiastic about increasing product awareness/brand building, with 37% noting a high or very high agreement with that benefit. The next-highest level of agreement was for the benefit of enhanced audience targeting capabilities (35%). However, fewer showed high levels of agreement with the benefits of unique targeting opportunities (28%) and campaign effectiveness (28%).
Interestingly, when thinking about ad outcomes, respondents were fairly split between audio ads as performance or brand drivers. About 1 in 5 (19%) said they think about audio ads as mostly a performance driver, while 15% said mostly a brand driver. The remaining 63% think of them as both a performance and brand driver.
In the past, marketers and advertisers have primarily found conversion rather than awareness metrics most effective for digital audio ads, but last year only a slim majority (52%) of podcast ad revenues were for direct response (DR) campaigns, as opposed to 46% for brand awareness.
For more, download the Integral Ad Science report here.