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Why brands should embrace podcast advertising's power of trust & attention


Audio and Voice
Audio and Voice

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Audioboom's Mike Newman explores how podcast advertising builds trust through host authenticity and fostering brand advocacy in an engaged audience

Whether it’s a new brand fresh to market, or one with an already successful legacy, capturing attention and building trust are two of the hardest things for a brand to achieve - but podcast advertising offers a secret weapon for those looking to harness these potent qualities. 

Podcast hosts excel at capturing attention and building trust with their listener and for any brands brought into that conversation, it can translate to an incredible return on investment.

According to the UK audio industry’s measurement body RAJAR, at least one in five adults in the UK say they listen to at least one podcast a week and, in the most recent MIDAS survey, RAJAR suggests that 94% of all podcast listening is done alone, usually on headphones. This creates an enviable intimacy, making it easy for a podcast host to capture listener’s attention. The listener might be walking the dog, cleaning the house or driving home, but they’re doing it with an attentive ear on their favourite podcast and that generates an incredibly high receptiveness to advertising. A study by The Guardian found that 65% of podcast listeners paid attention to the ads they heard.

Authenticity is often spoken of when describing podcasters and it’s not hard to make the leap from authenticity to trust - after all, who trusts a fake? Authenticity is relatable - a podcast might be about technology, food or football, but listen long enough and you’ll no doubt hear the host share personal anecdotes or even slip up occasionally. There is a sense of connection being built with every single episode, making listeners feel like they're part of the conversation, not just consuming content.

So, when the host mentions a product or service, it's not perceived as an interruption, it's considered an extension of the conversation. A well-crafted podcast ad resonates with a listener who already trusts the host, making them receptive to the brand's message.

But why is this trust so potent? It's a mixture of different factors. Podcast hosts often specialise in well-defined topics, attracting large audiences passionate about the same thing. This shared passion creates a sense of community, with the host at the centre. Listeners trust their host's judgement because they believe in their expertise and share their interests. In this environment, a podcast host can mention a TV show they watched, a product they used to solve a nagging problem or a service they utilised that aligned with their values. And because the podcast host is viewed as a trusted voice, their recommendations carry weight and the listener remembers it.

Podcast advertising isn't just about reaching more ears (although you’ll do that too), it's about cultivating trust and creating brand advocates. It's about tapping into the power of intimacy and authenticity. In a world where consumers are inundated with marketing messages, brands that forge genuine connections through podcasting will stand out from the noise and reap the rewards of a truly engaged audience.

By Mike Newman, Vice President, UK Content & Partnerships


Audioboom is a leading global podcast publisher. We connect podcasters and advertisers with engaged and passionate audiences.

Posted on: Friday 16 February 2024