Podcast Advertising… It’s All About Sex

By David Kidd, BPR

Well, now I’ve got you reading this article I should clarify the title……It’s All About Gender.

In 2020, PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) forecast that $800 million would be spent in the current year on podcast ads in the U.S. and by 2024 the total will reach $1.7 billion. In the 4th annual IAB U.S. Podcast Advertising Study, prepared by PwC, the biggest categories among podcast advertisers are DTC or direct-to-consumer brands (22%) and financial services (16%), with health and wellness and home and appliance the largest DTC subcategories, per the report. News is the leading podcast content genre for U.S. podcast advertisers, capturing 22% of revenue, followed by comedy (17%) and society and culture (13%).

But these figures don’t paint the entire picture.

Recent Nielsen research in the US reveals podcast audiences can be heavily skewed female or male depending on the category.

In Nielsen’s Podcasting Today report, Kids & Family was the most female skewed genre with 77% of the audience being female. Conversely, Sports and Technology were the most male skewed genres. Fiction is the most evenly balanced genre by gender.

When looking at top podcast genre usage among women ages 25-54 based on percent of all podcast usage, Nielsen says Comedy and True Crime were tops (9%), followed by News and Society & Culture (8%). For men in the same age 25-54 demographic, News was the most preferred genre (13%), followed closely by Comedy (12%).

 

As the authors of the Nielsen report say “After a decade of audience growth, podcasts have become an extremely appealing advertising platform. And with broadening appeal and strong listener engagement, brands should be looking to them as a more personalized way to connect with audiences who are maxed out on visual inputs. Importantly, podcast advertising—particularly when delivered by the podcast host—drives stronger brand recall punch than more traditional forms of advertisements”.

What this research shows is that radio stations creating bespoke podcasts, not just repurposing on-air content, can target genres to cater to females, males and both. This in turn provides advertisers with a menu of finely targeted opportunities to reach their existing and prospective customers.

 

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