Spotify is expanding its podcast advertising capabilities with the acquisition of a major advertising platform, Megaphone.

A few words about podcast advertising campaigns

Podcast advertising, like most advertising campaigns on the web, has a cost per thousand impressions/downloads.

A podcast is usually divided into three parts for advertisings. A pre-roll, a mid-roll and a post-roll. Each part can contain one or two advertisements. So you can have six ads on a podcast.

But it may be better to have only one pre-roll ad and one mid-roll ad.

The cost of advertisements per podcast ranges from 5 to 70 US$, depending on the quality of the podcast, the advertiser, etc.

Let’s say that if your podcast has a price of 30US$ per minute, which is about average, the pre-roll may be a little less, the mid-roll will be 30 US$ and the post-roll will be less. Listeners sometimes skip the pre-roll. If they are in the middle of the episode, they are probably listening to the whole commercial, and they can skip the post-roll.

There are several ad networks that allow you to place ads (such as Midroll, or any of the podcast networks such as Megaphone). PodcastOne, Audion, Adswizz… They generally take 20% commission. These ads are called “premium” because they are placed on your podcast as soon as it is released and remain there either for sixty days or until the podcast reaches the number of downloads that the advertiser has purchased.

Spotify’s acquisition of Megaphone

Spotify has acquired Megaphone, a leading podcast advertising and publishing platform, to expand the advertising options for podcasters. The US$235 million purchase is one of the largest ever made by by Spotify.

Megaphone is used by more than 20,000 podcast publishers and advertisers, including The Wall Street Journal, Slate, Vox Media, ESPN, How Stuff Works, and many others.

Spotify’s acquisition of Megaphone will create new opportunities for podcasters and podcast advertisers.

New advertising tools for podcast publishers

In its latest report, Spotify states that 22% of its users listen to podcasts. In addition, advertising revenue from podcasts has increased by almost 100 per cent year-on-year.

The acquisition of Megaphone therefore enables Spotify to offer podcast publishers more ways to monetise their content.

Spotify and Megaphone will enable advertisers to advertise on Spotify’s original and exclusive podcasts, while increasing the reach of Megaphone’s target market.

The Megaphone Targeted Marketplace is used by leading brands to reach their target market with podcast ads, such as Google, AT&T, Microsoft, Sony, Starbucks and Walmart. The list of Spotify’s podcast advertising partners is therefore expanding considerably as a result of this acquisition.

Megaphone also offers a suite of podcast publishing and analysis tools, which will also be available to Spotify creators.
In return, Spotify will make its own advertising solution, Streaming Ad Insertion, available to customers of this solution for the first time.

Once Spotify and Megaphone have merged, podcast publishers will be able to use Streaming Ad Insertion to sell advertising slots using a model based on confirmed ad impressions.

Introduced earlier this year, Streaming Ad Insertion provides podcasters and advertisers with key data such as actual ad impressions, frequency, reach, as well as anonymised age, gender and device type.

In the past, podcasts were broadcasted via RSS feed downloads, which made this type of data collection difficult or even impossible. The move to streaming is a game-changer, and Spotify can leverage its technologies for planning, reporting and measurement, just as it does for music streaming.

In recent years, the video format has enjoyed considerable success on virtually all web platforms, but audio is beginning to be one of the most demanded content online, as is the case with podcasts, online radio and other forms of digital audio.

According to Google, “by 2020, American adults are expected to listen to more digital audio content than traditional radio for the first time. As the audio landscape continues to evolve more and more towards the digital channel, marketers have more opportunities to reach their audiences and grab their attention using this proven format.

And to encourage this type of content, Google has announced a new range of audio advertising options for businesses to join this growing digital audio consumption trend, including Audio Mixer, a tool that will make it easier to create audio ads.

Google will now make it easier to create professional audio ads for inclusion in audio streaming, podcast and smart speaker services.

Audio Mixer: Easily create digital audio commercials

Most of us put on background music when we work, take a walk while listening to our favourite podcast or interact with a smart speaker. Google Audio Mixer is a good opportunity to reach your target audience.

“Audio ads are a unique way to reach customers when they are not looking at their device, but when they are still interested in the content and receptive to a brand’s messages,” said Google in its release.

The Audio Mixer allows marketers to load different tracks, including music, sound effects and voice, while having full control over editing to create professional quality audio advertising.

Audio Mixer also allows brands and agencies to add complementary visual creations to be displayed with the audio tracks.

This tool is intuitive and easy to use, regardless of the user’s level of technical expertise. Audio Mixer is now available worldwide on Display & Video 360.

Discover the audio inventory available on the market

Google also wants to make it easier for advertisers to connect with audio publishers and find out what inventory is available for their campaigns. Audio now has its own section in the marketplace, featuring leading partners such as AdsWizz, iHeart, Pandora, SoundCloud, Spotify and TuneIn, among others.

In addition, this tool also offers specific information on the type of content to distinguish between music, radio and podcast. This inventory is now available to all advertisers on Marketplace.

Google Brand Lift now offers metrics for audio ads

Google Brand Lift is an advertising measurement solution capable of evaluating the impact of advertising campaigns in terms of brand perception: by the end of the year, Brand Lift will also be added to the inventory of audio ads on Google.

With this tool, advertisers will know how audio campaigns influence brand recognition and purchase intent, and will be able to optimize these ads based on the results, in conjunction with the results of video and YouTube campaigns.

Why this is great news to reach your international audience

As an agency specialising in audio / video translation, with skills and experience in SEO / SEM, we believe that companies wishing to develop their brand awareness in foreign markets will finally be able to use audio to set up campaigns and reach potential customers internationally on channels that have been less exploited until now. The LenseUp agency can help you in the implementation of these campaigns.

Podcast and digital audio audiences are on the rise during containment in France.

Consumption of audio content and podcasts explodes during confinement: 46% of French people say they listen to more of them. A new study reveals a 20% increase in digital audio listening thanks to media, with 8 out of 10 French people listening to digital audio compared to 6 out of 10 before confinement. This phenomenon can be explained by the absence of car journeys which used to favour radio but which are now being abandoned in favour of digital.

After the explosion of mobile and video content, another format is now taking off, or to be more exact, is spreading its wings on the French market: the audio.

Before Covid, according to Mediametrie, 9.8% of Internet users listened to native podcasts every month, compared to 6.6% in 2019, with a young audience (60% of native podcast listeners are under 35). More than 1 out of 4 Internet users listened to radio replay content and/or native podcasts. 26% of Internet users listened, during the month, to radio content previously broadcast on the air in replay (21.2%) and/or native podcasts (9.8%).

Native podcasts were now known by nearly half of Internet users (47%), with increased awareness among the youngest: 68% of the under-15-24s are familiar with this format. Listening to native podcasts was an intimate moment, “solo” for 93% of listeners, on a mobile phone for 57% and rather at the end of the day, after 6pm, for 51% of listeners.

The evolution of podcasting in France in 2020, during the coronavirus crisis and beyond

The French Adtech Audion recently published a study on the digital audio and podcast consumption of the French during confinement. The study reveals that nearly half (46%) of the French say they listen to more audio content than before confinement, and 1 in 5 listen much more. In one month of confinement, the growth of podcast listeners is greater than the annual growth. The study shows that listeners are mainly looking for content that makes them laugh (at 38%), but first turn to podcasting for information (66%).

Key points of the study

There are three main key figures from this study. Firstly, nearly half of the French listen to more content than before the confinement and 20% listen to much more. In total, 83% of French people listen to digital audio content.
Underlying these figures is the transformation in usage that has taken place between the beginning of containment and today. Digital audio listening has dropped with the announcement of the confinement, but the French are resuming this habit while many no longer have daily commutes, which were the main listening hours in normal times. This shows that the French are keen on these listening times, and that digital audio is part of their daily life despite the disappearance of “ritual” hours during the day.

Consumption of podcasting by French people during confinement

By questioning the French about their podcast consumption during confinement, the survey showed that the number of podcast listeners had increased by 4% since the beginning of confinement. This is more than the annual growth in podcast listening, if we are to believe Médiamétrie’s figures! Podcasting attracts in particular French people who are already used to listening to online content: two thirds of them listen to it, and 54% of radio listeners are also podcast consumers.

The digital audience first declined at the beginning of the confinement, since the habits of a large part of the French population were completely changed due to the lack of daily commuting. But listening quickly picked up again, especially thanks to the podcast. The fact that the podcast is gaining ground is a strong signal to the market: it shows that listeners are keen on this listening format, which is easily adaptable to their daily lives.

A first explanation for this phenomenon is the variety of content available. Especially during the confinement period, podcast producers have accelerated their content production. The variety of the latter makes it possible to address a wide range of listeners. Finally, it can be seen that the podcast is a preferred format not only for entertainment in this difficult context, but also to meet the need for information that has increased during containment. Regarding the subjects that interested each section of the population, and the results are very varied: 81% of listeners aged 55-64 are looking for cultural content, while the youngest prefer to go for entertainment… The podcast format and deferred listening make it possible to respond “on-demand” to everyone’s desires.

During confinement, parents were very fond of educational or entertainment content for their children. It is a format that allowed them to keep them occupied without putting them in front of the screens all day long, while stimulating their imagination. For many parents, confinement also means “home schooling”. Many podcasts already existed or have been launched to help them with educational content designed especially for younger children. As a result, 1/4 of listeners aged 25-34 have their children listen to podcasts.

Live audio and digital radios lost their advantages in favor of delayed digital listening

There are no precise figures on a drop in consumption on the radio, but digital appears to be the main medium for listening to music, radio or podcasts: the number of listeners of audio content on digital has increased by 20% since the beginning of the confinement.
This choice of digital for listening to audio content was already a trend before containment. It is reinforced with the coronavirus, since many French people no longer have to take their car to work. Due to the lack of car journeys, the French listen on their smartphones or computers, or even on their connected speakers, and less on radios. Indeed, the French listen less to their usual radio in the morning at 7:30 am, but go to listen to the news by replay or podcast at 9 am while having their coffee, for example.

These new habits might remain in the post-confinement era

There is every reason to believe that the habits born during confinement will continue. New podcast listeners, for example, are 34% who want to maintain these habits. Nearly 1 in 5 confined French people are thinking of going into podcasting, and more than half of digital listeners will start listening to podcasts. The consumption of digital audio and podcasts has already been growing strongly for several years. IConfinement has the effect of an accelerator by giving rise to new habits among French people.

This growth might continue in the coming months. We intend to accompany this growth by allowing podcats publishers to adapt their podcasts for the French market.