Backblaze Builds Brand Awareness with Podcast Ads

Learn how Midroll helps Backblaze build measureable brand awareness by leveraging the personal endorsement that comes with podcast ads.

Yev Pusin, Backblaze

Backblaze is an online backup service for Mac and Windows computers that uses its inexpensive server design to provide low-cost data backup. The company has been using podcast advertising since 2012 to build awareness of its service within a competitive sector.

Backblaze’s Social Marketing Manager Yev Pusin explained that, “We do surveys every year [that show] 88% of people still don’t back up their computer on a daily basis. So we’re fighting apathy more than [fighting] our competitors. It’s mostly about getting the idea of, ‘hey, you should be backing up,’ out there.”

That’s why, “In my ad reads I try to raise awareness of what we do and why we do it.”

Therefore brand awareness is a big element of Backblaze’s strategy. “Podcasts help us stay at top-of-mind,” Yev said.

He does real-time media monitoring using the Mention app, and has noticed that, in particular, he sees quite a few mentions on Twitter from customers saying they learned about Backblaze from podcasts. Also, “when the podcast hosts give a little personal anecdote or story,” about using online backups, “that really helps to drive traffic.”

Backblaze logo“What I like about Midroll,” Yev shared, “is that when we have an ad, it appears on the podcast’s page that Backblaze was a sponsor. What’s really nice is when the hosts and the podcasts promote it on social media a little bit, and give a shout-out or a thank you for the sponsorship, and link back to the link we provided.”

Backblaze’s podcast ads are working for branding. “Yes, it’s wonderful,” he said. “Any time someone gets a recommendation from someone they trust, it’s a good thing for any brand. If it causes people to actually go to the company and give it a try that’s even better.”

Unlike some advertisers Backblaze does not use offer codes because their service is already a great value. “If we can’t get you to buy it at $5 a month for unlimited data, then $4.50 is not going to do too much better.” Instead they use custom URLs that offer a free trial, and then use cookies to track visits.

However, Yev acknowledges that they lose the ability to track some customers who go directly to the home page rather than the custom URL. At the same time, he notes that tracking performance is more difficult with other media.  “With TV,” he said, “it’s virtually untrackable, especially when you consider social and website links from the podcast pages.” 

Yev said that podcasts have been “strong” for customer acquisition, “generating more sales for us than some of the other things we’re doing.”

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