Sound Ideas: How to Bend an Ear with Creative

Jake Jones, Account Manager at A Million Ads

One of the biggest growth sectors in advertising is digital audio and this short read outlines three ways digital audio helps brands connect to consumers. Through amplifying the effect of other creative channels, personalising creative to listeners and through 3D (binaural) audio.

This year’s IAB Listening Britain Infographic showed that 24.8 million of us, or 46% of the UK, are now listening to digital audio. That’s 15% more than last year. But how can creatives use this expanding audience to impact consumers?

Audio and speech intrinsically shape how we think and what we feel so it’s already a great asset and here’s how creatives can excel at connecting brands with consumers:

  1. Audio ads amplify the effect of your media mix

Audio is an intimate, brand safe environment where users engage with content but it’s also a great place to develop reach and uplift for brands. According to Nielsen 79% of audio consumption takes place when people are engaged in activities where visual media cannot reach them. Digital audio can now play a role within media mixes to drive reach and conversion as you would with DCO for display or video.

Spotify also reports that audio ads drive 60% greater recall than a benchmark of more than 1,600 online campaigns. The key thing about digital audio is that digital provides a real time measurable audience which products like DAX’s Listener ID can measure against web visits and on-site conversions or use a footfall study from an adtech supplier.

  1. Personalised ads and dynamic creative

Personalisation in audio allows you to tailor your message to every listener. As a listener we are hearing to on average 12 hours of content a week. With such an intrinsically self-curated experience listeners need ads that compliment how they choose to listen. Think ads that know it’s breakfast, that you’re in freezing London, that it’s snowing in The Alps today, and ads that know the odds of Harry Kane scoring in his next match are 5:1.

Dynamic ads are dominating the awards circuit. Studies have shown a 5x increase in website traffic for a high street retailer in the UK, over twice as many boilers sold for an energy company on top of the regular brand uplifts that audio is renowned for. It’s no wonder that increasingly, more of the UKs leading brands are adopting personalisation with key platforms DAX, Bauer, Pandora, Acast and Spotify (programmatic only) all offering the capability to serve personalised audio ads that allow you to connect to their listeners like never before.

  1. 3D audio

In this intimate space 65% of listening takes place on headphones; creating an intimate and personal space for brands to connect. Here, brands can not only engage and excite listeners with personalisation but create ads that suit stereo listening using binaural or 3D audio.

The process is simple but effective, using a 3D model of a head with microphones fitted on either side of the skull to record your voiceover talent. This technique, which has actually been around since the thirties, creates a 3D soundscape where a voiceover can whisper sweet nothings into your right ear, or literally run rings around you with a powerful brand message.

Digital audio is one of advertising’s biggest growth sectors in 2018 so it’s becoming increasingly important for brands to learn how to maximise their presence in this connected and intimate space. The channel is an effective place to get your brand’s message across but creative agencies can increasingly catch our precious attention by creating relevance and tailoring their messages to the way in which we all curate out audio experiences.

Written by

Jake Jones, Account Manager at A Million Ads


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