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What Makes a Podcast Ad Effective?

Podcasts offer strong value for advertisers as the result of the growing amount of content, audience diversity and high engagement levels, including increased brand recall. Opportunities for monetization of podcast ads have increased and MAGNA expects U.S. podcast ad revenues to reach $2.4 billion in 2023.

Engaging the Next Generation: Challenges and Opportunities in Marketing to Gen Z

Aarti BhaskaranGlobal Head of Ad Research & Insights, Snap Inc.

Kara LouisGroup Research Manager, Snap Inc.

With 90% of Gen Z using their platform, Snap’s Aarti Bhaskaran and Kara Louis shared six top trends gathered over three years of studying this cohort from a combination of consumer insights and media measurement. As the most diverse generation in the U.S., Gen Z values authenticity and looks for personal online experiences in ways that inform how they engage with content. The data presented showed how Gen Z are visual communicators and mobile video natives. They trust real content from friends and family, pay attention early in ads, care about purpose messaging and want immersive shopping experiences, ideally personalized with AR. The Q&A after the presentation covered other aspects of the study including global differences, ad lengths, content creators and costs, and Gen Z-favored brands.

Brands looking to connect with Gen Z should:

  • Adapt to visual communication: 95% of Gen Z have used visual communication when messaging friends, and 54% of Gen Zs agree that digital avatars/Bitmojis help them express themselves.
  • Leverage mobile video: For Gen Z, mobile is a complement to TV with 1 in 2 (54%) like watching shorter shows or bite-size highlights of TV shows.
  • Ensure real, brand-safe content: 89% say it’s important to watch videos in a place that feels like a trusted and safe space.
  • Use immersive experiences: Interactive and personalized shopping experiences are a must—92% of Gen Z are interested in using AR for shopping, with over half of Gen Z saying they’d be more likely to pay attention to an ad that uses AR.
  • Capture their attention early: Despite having the lowest overall active attention across generations, Gen Z has the highest active attention in the first 8 seconds.
  • Feature purpose-driven messaging: 73% of Gen Z are likely to be loyal to a company that speaks to social issues, posts information or has ads about social change.

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What Makes a Podcast Ad Effective?

Brian HughesEVP, Managing Director, Audience Intelligence & Strategy, MAGNA

Arica McKinnonVP, Campaign Analytics, Nielsen

Podcasts offer strong value for advertisers as the result of the growing amount of content, audience diversity and high engagement levels, including increased brand recall. Opportunities for monetization of podcast ads have increased and MAGNA expects U.S. podcast ad revenues to reach $2.4 billion in 2023. Brian Hughes of MAGNA and Arica McKinnon of Nielsen shared the results of a podcast advertising effectiveness study and presented the best practices that increased the effectiveness of these ads, overall, and for CPG, automotive and retail brands, specifically. The study measured the impact of podcast advertising on key brand lift metrics utilizing an online panel, controlled exposure methodology and a post survey. These results were then compared to Nielsen’s Podcast Norms.

Key Takeaways

  • Podcasts provide reliable lifts on key brand metrics, including familiarity, affinity, information-seeking intent, purchase intent, recommendation intent and aided awareness, but fine-tuning can create even more value.
  • Longer creative generally drives higher lifts, but 35 seconds to a minute ads strike the right balance between results and the listener experience.
  • More brand mentions drive better results.
  • Host read ads are better for building awareness and driving search.
  • Custom content enables brands to build awareness due to strong recall.
  • Pre- and mid-roll placements show comparable lifts, while post-roll has a clear disadvantage.
  • Podcasts can drive positive results for CPG brands across the funnel.
    • Auto brands can use podcasts to build awareness and affinity. Sports podcasts are a good fit for auto brands.
  • Podcasts work well to build awareness and affinity for retail brands.

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ATTENTION METRICS: Moving from Laboratory to Field Applications

On September 12, the ARF and Adelaide co-hosted an event to deepen understanding around how attention metrics work, how to utilize them and the nuances of their application to media and advertising quality measurement. Attention Economy experts from Adelaide, Anheuser-Busch InBev, the ARF, The Attention Council, Havas Media Group, OMD USA, Realeyes and TVision hosted shared presentations and held focused discussions on how attention metrics can optimize the match between media placement and consumer targets, improve creative testing and overall campaign outcomes, and more.

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Concurrent Track Panel Discussion: Art & Science in Ad Creative

MSI’s Earl Taylor moderated a panel discussion regarding art and science in ad creative. The diverse panel of industry leaders provided feedback, commentary and viewpoints on a variety of topics presented on day two of AUDIENCExSCIENCE 2022. Areas of discussion included category disruption, ad currency, drivers of interactive video, opportunities from disruption and ad length effectiveness.

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One Size [Does Not] Fit All Optimizing Audio Strategies for Success

What spot length works best? Audacy partnered with Veritonic to compare frequent radio listener responses to 15, 30 and 60-second ads across multiple categories such as auto, financial, retail and professional services to address this frequently asked question. Jenny Nelson (Audacy) and Korri Kolesa (Veritonic) presented the results of this study, which were measured by Veritonic’s audio score components such as attribute score, intent score and engagement score. This survey-based study of a panel of 2,400 radio listeners pointed to a variety of recommendations, such as initiating multiple 30-second ads instead of fewer 60-second ads, testing creative before launch and deploying a total audio strategy to reach omnichannel listeners.

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Strategies for Creating Successful Six-Second Ads

  • Colin Campbell, University of San Diego; Erin Pearson, University of East Anglia

Scholars and practitioners in recent years have grappled with the potential and limitations of six -second ads. A new study clarifies those constraints and offers actionable strategies in various stages of the creative process, to help advertisers boost the effectiveness of short, online video ads.

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Eyes on :06s: What Factors Predict Attention to Short Ads?

  • Henry G. Wolf and Paul Donato

TV commercials are getting shorter and shorter, mimicking their digital counterparts, but how good are they at capturing viewers’ attention? ARF research comparing the effectiveness of more than 3,000 short-form TV advertisements found that what drives visual attention to :06s differs from the drivers for :15s and :30s.

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