Will the US Podcast Advertising Revenue Hit $1 Billion Mark?

According to the latest IAB report titled the “US Podcast Advertising Revenue Study”, the podcasting media is considered as the most resilient content marketing and advertising platform in the COVID-19 disrupted market. Despite a sluggish run in the last two quarters, podcast formats are seen to be performing better than other advertising channels.

The reason?

The DIY content creation which can be easily scaled to meet ad messaging standards across multiple marketing genres…

According to the IAB report, the US podcast advertising industry is slated to grow by 14.7% YoY, taking the total projections to $1 Billion mark by March-end 2021. According to eMarketer, a majority of the US-based podcast listeners prefer to regularly check their lists and almost 30% of the audience even buy products based on the podcast ads played out during their favorite series.

Different media intelligence firms put the active number of US-based podcast shows anywhere between 1 million and 2.5 million. Nearly half of them are hosted in the Apple Podcast (Source Listen Note). The podcast listeners are an active audience group with a high percentage of them sharing relevant feedback and comment n the quality of content, length of the show, and what they would like to hear more often.

During the pre-COVID months, a large percentage of podcast listeners preferred to “turn on” their shows while commuting or while doing their workout or household chores. The lockdown seemingly has bent the trend negatively for every podcast listener. However, a certain group of listeners took to podcasting as a source of motivation to start their own inner journey, pick up new hobbies, search for relationship tips, and/ or simply find their answers to COVID-19 anxieties.

Today, podcasting media has become the most readily accessible content distribution channel for both publishers as well as influencers who are promoting not just their products but also their ‘stories’ and journeys through interactive content and audio.

In recent months, major audio marketing and advertising platforms have invested heavily in the podcasting technology to complement their music services. For example, Spotify and SiriusXM. SiriusXM acquired Stitcher earlier this month to take on the B2B side of the podcast advertising business with cutting-edge personalization on cards.

Recently, IAB showcased its Podcast Measurement Guidelines to provide better clarity and transparency into how new-age measurement and metrics are tested and analyzed to help advertisers get better control on their advertising investments and podcast placements.

Who is winning the Podcast Race?

According to the latest IAB report, News (22%), Comedy (17%), and Society-Culture (13%) are the top-three genres that are generating maximum podcasting ad revenues in the US. Strangely, otherwise, very popular genres like Music (1%), TV and Film (2%) and History (3%) are among the least productive ad revenue generation factors.

The respondents didn’t find other popular formats to be revenue-friendly channels either.

Religious content, politics, Kids entertainment, and Fitness didn’t score high either– which is strange given the kind of content an average Gen Z millennial would prefer to watch on a Live Streaming channel.

How have Ad Revenues Shifted in the Last 12 Months?

Retail (DRC brands) and Financial Services are dominating the podcast ad investments. Telecom, B2B marketing, and CPG players are also investing in the podcast ads, however, COVID-19 seems to have heavily dented their efforts in 2020.

IAB has identified these reasons for the decreased podcasting ad revenues projections in 2020.

  • Canceled events Booked, but not Live (31%)
  • Paused campaigns (25%)
  • Tone-deaf performance marketing (8%)

Today, clearly the marketing teams are heavily mission-based marketing or cause-related marketing against simply focusing on growing brand equity using podcasts.

What Veritone Intends to Achieve with UGC Library from Collab?

If you have analytics on the “Best Podcasting” channels, you can share the latest finding on the “Popular Podcasts” and the number of Likes/Shares/Downloads with us at sghosh@martechseries.com.

For now, we can firmly state that US podcast ad revenue to cross $1 Billion mark for the FY 2020-2021.

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