By Farlyn Lucas
Have you ever gone for a walk, a drive, or even done chores around your house and thought to turn on a podcast? You’re not alone.
Insider Intelligence highlights how “demand for on-demand audio has increased” and “in 2022, the number of monthly US podcast listeners will increase by 6.1% year-over-year to 125 million.”
The podcast industry is undoubtedly growing; podcasts are entertaining and informative, and with such a wide variety to choose from, everyone can find one that they resonate with.
For authors looking to gain a wider reach, the rise of podcast listeners opens a window of advertising opportunity, though a little bit different than traditional media.
In addition, podcasts are a great advertising platform that allows various companies to reach their target audience. Even authors can stand to benefit from podcast adverts.
But is podcast advertising still strong in the latter half of 2022? To help, we have put together this guide on the basics of podcast advertising.
What Is Podcast Advertising?
Simply put, podcast advertising is an audio advertisement that promotes your company via a podcast. They are short dynamic clips that briefly engage with listeners.
You can do this in many ways: by having an ad appear at the beginning or end of a show, by sponsoring a show, or even by creating a branded podcast that features your brand.
There is a plethora of podcasts out there. This makes it easy to promote your company on the top podcast advertising networks such as Apple Podcasts, Spotify, and Google Podcasts.
Because of so many streaming platforms to place ads on, you can easily pinpoint shows that reach your target audience to engage with potential customers, drive business, and increase sales.
Why Should Authors Use Podcast Advertising?
There are many advantages to advertising your newest release through podcast networks. To start, podcast advertising networks help you efficiently reach your target audience.
Podcast Insights says that there are over 2 million podcasts and “over 48 million episodes as of April 2021.” That number is only growing, meaning there is expansive ad availability within the podcast industry.
Another advantage of podcast advertising is that it’s easier than video, where you’re constantly having to find new content ideas to upload on different platforms.
With video advertising, a lot goes into the creative execution of the advertisement, while with podcast ads, you need to develop a quick and engaging monologue.
Business.com highlights how “you can make a pre-produced ad for the podcast to insert at the beginning, middle, or end, or leave it up to the podcast hosts themselves to advertise your business.” Like radio, some DJs read the ad, others play it.
It also allows you to reach people who are already engaged with your content. This means that they’re more likely to be interested in what you have to say.
Podcast advertising doesn’t have to be difficult, and you only have two podcast advertising examples to choose from.
What Ad Type is Best?
There are two common types of podcast ads: live air and pre-recorded. Live air ads are advertisements read as the podcast host is recording their episode. Pre-recorded ads are just that, promotions that are pre-produced segments that are inserted into the show during editing.
Authors may benefit more from the live air ad. Depending on the audience research done for the specific podcast, you can plug an upcoming audiobook that is best suited for the type of listeners tuning in.
The live air ad may be the more ideal option also due to the connection the audience may already have with the host. There is more freedom with what can be said about your upcoming piece and it’s not as intrusive as a pre-recorded ad.
How Does Podcast Advertising Work?
Like all forms of advertising, podcast advertising works best when it aligns with your audience’s interests.
For example, if your book is about baseball, you might choose to advertise on very sports-heavy shows or something akin to baseball history. Or, if you’d like to promote your latest novel, you might decide to run an ad during a talk radio segment discussing the latest trends in romance novels.
The key is that you need to find out what people are interested in so that you can target them appropriately. This means doing some research on your own or hiring someone to help you do it.
When you advertise on a podcast, you’ll need to choose between two options: paid ads and sponsorships. Paid ads are advertisements that appear within the podcast itself. Sponsorships are advertisements that appear outside of the podcast. Both options have pros and cons, but as mentioned before, the live air ads are what would be ideal for writers and authors alike.
You should note that most companies charge different amounts depending on both types of ads, and the cost may be out of your advertising budget. Always request a quote before agreeing to a vendor’s terms and reading the fine print.
Consider Appearing as a Guest
Perhaps an understated form of direct advertising would be to appear in a series of podcast episodes to promote your upcoming work. This does require a serious line of communication, pitching the idea to several hosts, and creating talking points for the episode in its entirety.
This may be an uphill battle for some writers that are just beginning and are having trouble building a foundation for themselves. However, it not only builds a line of intimacy with potential readers, but you have a lot of room to describe your work.
The important thing is to find out which podcast would be interested in your book or written work in the first place. As John King of The Drunk Odyssey states, sometimes it’s more about the book than the person. This is where research and planning come into play.
Three Digital Alternatives to Podcast Ads
If podcast advertising seems like a steep hill for you, whether it’s the type of audience or budget amount, fear not! There are other digital ways to advertise your releases. Here are 3 key ways you can go about it:
Digital advertising is a great way for many companies to market themselves and reach their clients. An individual can develop and run ads on various websites by working alongside a media agency. Digital advertising lets you track analytics and optimize your ad campaign in real time. It’s an effective way to promote your products and services and hyper-target your ideal buyer within the digital landscape.
Social Media Advertising
Another popular digital marketing technique is social media advertising. How many times have you been scrolling through Instagram or Facebook, and an ad pops up? Now imagine if that ad was for your newest audiobook. Social media advertising is a great way to hyper-target your clients and build an audience, all from an app. If you’re on a budget and don’t want to pay for ads on these platforms, start by making a profile for your writing or your pseudonym. From there, you can engage with readers and fans and drive website traffic. It’s a cost-effective way to increase notability and promote yourself.
Our last online advertising tactic is email marketing. Email marketing is a targeted marketing strategy that allows you to send emails to people who match your ideal target audience. You can engage people based on their location, interests, and passions. Email marketing is an effective way to connect with potential customers, all from the comfort of their inboxes. You may need to scout an agency or third party that can handle this for you but this method has its strengths.
Farlyn Lucas is a freelance writer who specializes in marketing and business. She helps business owners create content that works for their audience, so that they can attract the best people. When she’s not working, she enjoys playing badminton and baking chocolate chip cookies.