by Hillary Turner
Navigating ‘New Media’: Podcasts
As of October 2021, there are over 2 million podcasts with over 48 million episodes.1 According to Infinite Dial 2 , 57% of the US population has listened to a podcast with 41% saying they listen to podcasts at least once a month. Those numbers are hard to ignore and trends show podcast popularity is continuously increasing. So, does it make sense to include them in your auto dealership or group’s marketing budget? At CBC Automotive Marketing, part our Media Buyers’ job is to sift through the numerous choices our clients have in each market and determine the best avenue for them. To do this, we need to understand the evolving marketplace and use that knowledge to fine tune our clients’ marketing strategies.
Podcast listenership has grown by 10% year over year and ad spend on this platform has nearly doubled since 2019 3. So, what does podcasting bring to the table? According to 2021’s Global Podcast Statistics 1, 81% of podcast listeners pay attention to podcast ads and 60% of podcast listeners have bought something from a podcast ad. The power of storytelling has long been used by brands to connect with consumers. Podcasting can harness that power in a unique way by aligning your brand with content that speaks to your customer base. This strategy can help increase engagement and give the listeners a more immersive experience.
Targetability is another attractive quality of podcasting, but it’s important to note that at this time, it can’t get as granular as other options. At CBC, our Media Buyers prefer to drill down by geography, demographics, genre and more, allowing us to use our clients’ marketing dollars more effectively. Streaming radio for example, allows dealers to target lower-funnel vehicle intenders. With podcasts, our research is finding that once you drill down to the zip code level or a radius impression, availability can become an issue. For brands with a national reach this isn’t much of a problem, but it is a concern for automotive dealers, since they usually have a locally-defined DMA.
It’s easy to get wrapped up in the excitement of the “next big thing” and a common misstep is to immediately discard certain existing media choices when a new platform is introduced. Based on behavioral data, we find that consumers have an insatiable appetite for media and often adopt new media in addition to existing media, rather than replacing it. In terms of podcasting, our research is finding a high correlation between podcast listeners and broadcast radio listeners. Nielsen’s data 4 supports this as well, as they report podcast listeners tune into broadcast radio 43 minutes more than the average American. This means if you are running a radio campaign there is a high probability that you’re already reaching podcast listenership through audience duplication – one of the many insights a professional Media-Buying team can uncover to help save your dealership or group money, without sacrificing on reach.
The podcast space is still developing, as is its marketing potential, and we’re keeping a watchful eye on it. Insider Intelligence 3 predicts that by the end of 2025 there will be over 144 million monthly podcast listeners in the US. As more and more users turn to podcasting for their entertainment needs, the CBC Automotive Marketing Team will continue to research when and if it makes sense for our clients marketing budgets. If you’re looking to evaluate your dealership or group’s marketing budgets, let’s have a conversation.