Audio has played a central role in storytelling since the dawn of time. Through the power of voice and sound, audio can deliver powerful experiences to consumers, taking them on a brand new adventure or reminiscing in good memories from the past. But for brands, audio can also influence consumers’ perception of your brand.
Even though audio is not a new medium, Americans still spend an enormous amount of time with it. In fact, the average American spends four hours every day listening to some form of audio1. That’s equivalent to one-quarter of a person’s waking hours. Audio is the perfect companion while people engage with their busy lives.
As marketers, you are tasked to “follow the consumer” and engage them in environments where they spend their precious time. We spoke with Erik Radle, CEO at Miller Ad Agency, to learn his take on how marketers can leverage audio to capture their audience’s attention during those four important hours.
Q: Miller Ad Agency has a long history of running broadcast and digital audio ads. What is the main challenge that these marketers face today?
A: Great question. Just recently, I took my kids to a Spartan race and the level of technology that everyone had with them was stunning…from smartphones to GoPros, wearable watches and more. As the world becomes more connected, it’s getting harder and harder to capture attention. That’s why the most important currency that marketers should be trading is attention, and audio is one of the most effective ways to break through and engage with today’s connected consumers.
A: With advanced targeting capabilities on digital audio platforms, marketers can leverage sequential messaging to tell their brand story. It’s hard to articulate a complex story in a 60 second audio ad, but sequencing allows you to tell a multi-faceted story through multiple ads. I believe that humans are open to messages that are “to be continued,” and that’s why this type of storytelling is so powerful. More and more, we’re also seeing clients wanting a creative library for storytelling. For our auto and financial services clients, 98% of their audience is not in-market at any given time. That’s why telling a longer brand story through multiple campaign messages can build residual value overtime, and influence those consumers to take action when they’re finally ready to buy.
Q: Agreed! What type of innovation have you seen in this evolving audio space?
A: On the tech side, Pandora’s new Intelligent Ad Insertion technology is a true differentiator compared to broadcast radio and any other digital platforms out there. The way it uses observations of how people behave on the platform to make smart decisions on when to serve them audio ads is truly innovative and unique to anything we’ve ever seen. When it comes to targeting, digital audio also allows us to innovate and extend our traditional media strategy—enabling our clients to target beyond estimated age, gender and geography. For instance, a client that already has an existing broadcast TV buy on NFL football can also leverage digital audio’s third party data segments to further hone in on those who watch NFL football on digital platforms.
A: It all comes down to creative messaging which varies depending on campaign objectives. For automotive clients that use digital audio to drive direct response, they want their listeners to hear the ad and take action within the next 15-30 days. It’s imperative that their message includes competitive pricing and a limited time offer to drive engagement and impact business sales.
Q: What are your 3 tips for navigating digital audio buys?
A: First, regardless of whether you’re a broadcast or digital buyer, you still need to pay attention to reach & frequency or share of voice. That way, you’re ensuring that your audio impressions are covering your geographic area effectively and not spread too thin. Second, take advantage of your publisher’s data-driven targeting capabilities such as reaching auto intenders or Spanish-speakers through third party data. To drive effectiveness, do not fall into the trap of over-segmenting and honing into too many niche audiences. Lastly, creative matters! Give your brand a positive experience for listeners by personalizing your message to their individual taste. Show them the attention that they want and you’ll receive positive engagement in return.
To learn how you can get started with audio advertising, check out our Definitive Guide to Audio. To grab your copy:
Source: 1 Edison Research Share of Ear Study, Q3 2016