In case you haven’t noticed yet, there’s an audio revolution happening right now. Digital audio lets us stream music to our hearts’ content, podcasts lead us on a journey into storyland, and voice-enabled devices respond to almost any query we can think up.
So what does this have to do with advertising? Digital audio has the extraordinary ability to cut through today’s media clutter by offering a personalized 1:1 experience. It’s also the one digital medium today whereby listeners can engage without tapping or swiping a screen if they choose.
When it comes to mastering digital audio ads that drive results and attract attention, Pandora’s own award-winning audio team has the expert tips and tricks.We’ve made it simple by spelling out the AUDIO rules of engagement.
Depending on the strategy, your ads can be heard across devices within a variety of content—from a podcast on mobile to music on a smart speaker. So consider the listening experience. It could be intimate, where you’re invited into someone’s home to tell them your story, or speaking into their ears through their earbuds. Let your audio ads feel and sound personalized, but avoid being too specific. (Ads can be served across publishers such as Pandora and SoundCloud, so avoid things like “Hey, Pandora listener.”) Fit into the moment your listener is in, and they’ll welcome you back.
Radio ads are not digital audio ads. So leave behind those loud, shouty voices, amped-up sound effects, and sing-songy jingles. Instead, embrace the medium by crafting an ad that is more conversational in tone. By using a more casual, familiar voice you create a seamless transition from audio to advertising, thereby increasing your chances of effectively reaching your audience. Listeners respond in turn to hearing a message that feels like a conversation they get to be a part of. Remember, audio ads should complement the experience, not distract from it.
We like to say: “Use your time wisely.” In a typical audio spot, you only have 30 seconds to deliver your message, so don’t get caught up trying to say too much. The more information the message contains, the less the listeners will remember. Instead, outline your key product benefits clearly and succinctly, and tell your story in a way that the listener can relate to. Another tip: treat audio as its own canvas instead of trying to adapt a commercial into an audio story.
As the advertiser, it’s your job to provide listeners with clear next steps: Do you want them to visit your website? Fill out a survey? Enter a promo code? With any campaign, it’s critical to determine your goals and KPIs up front, so that you can clearly measure the results post-campaign. Tailor your creative message accordingly and include a call-to-action that inspires listeners to take that next step. Remember that since they’re listening, not clicking, the call-to-action should be simple and straightforward. And again, go for a tone that’s personal and conversational (see tips #1 and #2).
Audio elevates storytelling. Here’s how: When we hear a soundscape or a sonic picture, our imaginations kick in to complete the story in our minds. From horns honking in traffic to the crunch of a chip and a satisfied “Mmm,” to sneaker squeaks on a court followed by the swoosh of a basketball hitting net, sound draws the listener’s imagination into the brand story. Furthermore, thanks to the psychology of sound, listeners tend to their memories to help complete that story, making it personal.
Brands can further enhance the experience by adding music to set the tone and mood.
All these audio pieces also contribute to branding and sonic identity—whether it’s a product SFX, the voice that tells your brand’s message, a brand mnemonic or jingle, or your tagline spoken at the end. So, absent of color, typefaces and visual demos, think about how your brand can leave a lasting impression through sound.
For a sound that defines your brand and leaves a lasting impression on customers, it’s important to partner with a team that understands audio inside and out. That’s why Pandora created Studio Resonate—a creative consultancy that combines data, science, and audio to develop a sound strategy that captures the essence of a brand in a way that’s never been heard before. To find out more, check out Studio Resonate here or to get in touch with Sales click here. Let’s get started!