Programmatic Audio opens a new era for radio advertising

Digital Audio, Digital Campaigns
B2C, B2B2C
Brand Awareness, Reach
Programmatic Audio

After years in the shadows, 'Digital' or 'Programmatic Audio' is finally at the forefront. After all, consumers increasingly use streaming services for radio and music. The boundary between online and offline listening is - just like in (e-)commerce - becoming increasingly blurred. Consumers' buying and information behaviour is becoming omni-channel, but their listening behaviour is also increasingly 'cross-device'. In order to maintain the best possible reach to customers, it is important to respond to this consciously, professionally and without delay. A new way of using media, requires a new approach to audio purchasing.

Until now, Programmatic Audio has been seen as a fun extra in digital media campaigns. This will be different from now on. After all, Digital Audio is fully in transition to a fully mature channel. That presupposes a different way of dealing with it and filling in the opportunities. It is no longer sufficient to use an existing radio spot integrally and inappropriately for Digital Audio campaigns. And the view must also be widened to the channels themselves: where in the early days these were usually limited to Spotify and Radionomy, the number of possibilities is rapidly increasing.

Creativity & Precision

Marketers' insight into the added value of Digital Audio has grown considerably in recent years. Advertisers increasingly decide to create new, specific and complementary spots. That is certainly worthwhile. After all, one of Programmatic Audio's greatest strengths lies in the combination of flexibility with extensive targeting possibilities. Exactly as with programmatic purchases of Display/Video/Native, audio can also be targeted on, among other things, geographical location or exact time, but it also offers possibilities to add data sources from own remarketing lists or from external data providers. Programmatic Audio Buying makes it possible to specifically reach the right audience, at the right time, with the right audio content.

The opportunity to reach consumers across different devices also means that advertisers are no longer tied to morning and evening peak hours, when just about everyone wants to take advantage of the scarce airtime with their spots. As the supply increases, you automatically get a positive effect on the market price. That's a good thing. Studies by Spotify, among others, show that Digital Audio, in combination with classic radio, provides an incremental range throughout the day (Figure 1). The share of Digital Audio consumption continues to increase as the day progresses (figure 2) with a peak in the evening hours.

Figure 1: incremental range versus radio

Digital Audio Spotify

Figure 2: listeners per moment of the day

Digital Audio Spotify 2

As a nice extra you can offer audio spots together with Display or Video ads, so you can create the link to your website right away. Admittedly: that's not immediately possible when someone is on the road in his or her car...

Promising future

In the meantime, as mentioned above, a varied range of platforms is available. From Spotify over Deezer to audio streams via TargetSpot, Soundcloud or Pandora. The future looks even brighter once all the classic radio stations will be available via programmatic. The first steps within the Benelux have meanwhile been taken: NRJ and Qmusic (currently limited to the Netherlands) are already offering programmatic purchases. It's only a matter of time before the others will follow.

In the final breakthrough of Programmatic Audio, podcasts will also play an important role. The recent acquisition of Gimlet and Anchor by Spotify will further accelerate this process. In October last year 'Spotify for Podcasters' was launched. The platform is now reported to have 10,000 monthly users or uploaders, and more than 185,000 podcasts, some of them exclusive to the platform.

Let's review the strengths of Programmatic Audio in the current media mix:

  • Last minute deployability;
  • More specific targeting options with less waste;
  • Instant range insight;
  • Interim optimization and adjustment of campaigns;
  • Retargeting for high performance and relevance;
  • Responding to external conversion factors in real time.

Do you see the opportunities and would you like to know more about them? Contact the Grava experts, we will be happy to help you further.

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