Make Podcast Ads Work for You: Design Your Best Campaign, Part 2

In part one of this section we explained how to set your objectives, refine your pitch and the importance of making your offer a “win-win-win.”

In part two we’ll cover the last four steps for designing your podcast ad campaign.


Step Four: Choose Your Audience

The podcast audience is growing — and becoming more diverse. If you can define your target consumers, we will help choose shows that will do the best job of reaching them.

Think about common demographics like age, gender and household income. But also consider psychographics like purchasing behavior.

Be prepared to buy spots on more than one episode of each show in your campaign. Campaign effectiveness goes up dramatically when you run ads on multiple episodes of a podcast.

Step Five: Define Your Budget

Podcast ads are priced on a CPM model, so your budget determines the size of your campaign’s audience. Your Midroll podcast expert will help estimate a reach and budget that fit your needs.

Be prepared to buy spots on more than one episode of each show in your campaign. Campaign effectiveness goes up dramatically when you run ads on multiple episodes of a podcast. In fact, in Midroll’s brand recall study, campaigns with three or more spots on a podcast drove 39% greater recall than campaigns that ran only one spot.

You also want to leave enough room to fine tune performance by adjusting your ad copy and offers over the course of multiple episodes.

Targeting podcast audiences is more like radio or television, except much more precise because we have better data.

Step Six: Choose Your Shows

With your target audiences and budget in mind, your podcast ad network will help you pick the best shows to fit your campaign goals, taking into account show categories, host personalities and listener demographics.

It’s important to understand that individual podcast listeners cannot be targeted or tracked in the same way as digital display ads, and there is no podcast network or agency that can guarantee comprehensive user-level targeting and tracking. Targeting podcast audiences is more like radio or television, except much more precise because we have better data.

Because we survey the listeners of every show on our roster, Midroll has extensive demographics and psychographics on each one, from age and household income, to listening and buying habits. That’s why successful advertisers choose us. Get a taste of this data in our Listener Demographic Report.

When choosing your shows keep these pro-tips in mind:

Think outside of niche, and go beyond your category focus.

Don’t assume that comedy audiences aren’t also entrepreneurs, or that listeners to a sports podcast aren’t interested in a comedy special. Just about everyone needs personal care products and household products. You may be surprised by how broad audience tastes and needs are.

Don’t put all your eggs in one basket.

Pick a wide selection of shows so you can see which audiences respond best to your message. You’ll also reach a wider audience.

Match content and tone to your campaign.

If your campaign focuses on straightforward educational elements, consider podcasts that have an informational focus. A comedic or light-hearted campaign may be a good fit for a comedy show, or a show that marries humor with other subjects (think, “My Favorite Murder”).


Step Seven: Pick Your Spots

Effective campaigns use a variety of spot positions, taking advantage of each one’s specific advantages. Amp up the impact of a mid-roll with a pre-roll or post-roll in the same episode to drive home that crucial call-to-action.

Pre-Roll

A 20 – 30 second read that runs at the very start of a show, typically just before or just after the episode’s intro. Most listeners will hear it because they don’t want to skip forward and risk missing content.
Pre-Roll Advantage: Most listeners hear it and don’t skip; lower cost than mid-rolls.

Mid-Roll

A 60+ second ad that runs in the middle of the program once the primary content has started. Hosts are more likely to integrate them directly into the flow of the show, injecting them with a little more creativity and spark. Mid-rolls are only slightly more expensive than a pre-roll, but are twice as long.
Mid-Roll Advantage: The longest available spots; best show integration; more time to focus on your product.

Post-Roll

A short ad read toward the end of the show, usually between the last content segment and any closing material. The most affordable spots, they’re best paired with a pre-roll or post-roll in the same episode to help reinforce your message. Because they come towards the end of an episode, that’s the time when listeners are ready to take action. Midroll uses post-rolls to advertise our own surveys, with great results.
Post-Roll Advantage: Reaches the most dedicated listeners; most affordable spots; reinforces pre- or mid-roll spots.


Next we’ll cover how to measure, test and refine your campaign.

Can’t wait that long to learn everything there is to know about podcast ads?

Download our free ebook, How To Make Podcast Ads Work for You.

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