Why we podcast...leveraging long form storytelling! #podcasts

Written by Bobby Rettew, MA

Bobby Rettew - Podcast Desk

I have been researching podcasts across the data and insights arena for the last few months as I have really become intentional about content creation. Some of the questions I have are similar to the ones many across the podcasting spectrum have mentioned, and also the advertising industry as a whole is grappling with collectively.

I am interested in a few things, specifically with lots of questions:

1) How to measure success?
– downloads
– reviews
– web analytics
– social media engagement

2) What is a download?
– The whole podcast episode in it’s entirety?
– How does stoping and starting a podcast impact download metrics?

3) What is the magic length?
– 10 Minutes?
– 15 Minutes
– 30 Minutes
– 45 Minutes
– 60 Minute

4) How to successfully build a sustainable audience?
– organic promotion
– build brand reputation
– create intentional call to actions
– create great content

5) What is the magic advertiser portfolio?
– who is our audience
– what category(s) & genre(s) do our shows fall under

I think the first two points above have lots of information online yet real hard data to support. There is just a lot of talking heads and people creating content to talk about podcasting just to draw an audience with nothing more than baseline how-to’s. I think it is important to set your own goals for especially the first point above.

I have been really diving into the third point, what is the magic length. I have been reading groups like Nielsen Insights and Westwood One. Here is some interesting data from Westwood One below, insights they are citing from audioBoom in 2015 (*1).
Westwood One Audio Boom - Podcast Length

This is starting to match-up with some of my favorite podcast experiences. I am more willing to listen to a longer (30-60 minutes) podcast from This American Life, Freakonomics, and/or Axe Files when on the road during a long commute or trip. I am also willing to listen to a shorter podcast (15-30 minutes) like Criminal on shorter drives, working out, or cutting the grass. BTW…all of these I will advance the podcast forward using the 15 second advance when an advertisement plays that sounds different from the voice of the person hosting the episode.

Here is some more interesting data, especially for you social media content marketers and community managers. This is also from Westwood One and Edison Research from 2014-2015.

Westwood One - Edison Research - Podcast Listening Times

Bottomline, people’s listening time closely matches time when content marketers share content on social media. Which we can derive that is the best time to schedule and promote our podcast episodes.

Podcast Listeners (2016 Data from Scarborough USA *2)
“The profile of an average podcast listener (according to Nielsen Scarborough) is young, educated and affluent. Consumers who watch, listen to or download a podcast are significantly more likely to be higher educated, higher income and career-minded, making them a qualified—and valuable—audience for advertisers and marketers.”

Persona of Optimal Podcast Listener:

  • Post Graduate – More Likely Represents 68% of Listeners
  • Household Income $250,000 – More Likely Represents 45% of Listeners
  • Professional – More Likely Represents 60% of Listeners
  • 25-34 Age Group – More Likely Represents 28.2% of Listeners
  • 35-44 Age Group – More Likely Represents 21.2% of Listeners
  • 45-54 Age Group – More Likely Represents 16.1% of Listeners

Advertising Opportunities (Inside The Shopping Cart of Podcast Fans – 2018 Q3 Data *3)
Every month more advertisers are adding podcasting to their media plans. One notable segment turning its attention to podcasting is Consumer Packaged Goods.

Here are the Top 10 Purchased Products Annually by Podcast Fans
1- Snacks
2- Pet Food
3- Paper Products
4- Cheese
5- Bread & Baked Goods
6- Carbonated Drinks
7- Candy
8- Milk
9- Vitamins
10- Medications/Remedies

Bottomline..if these are the top 10, podcast listeners truly match the US Health problems…we a freaking unhealthy listeners!

Here are the Top 5 Podcast Genres Among Avid Fans 
I have matched four of our Touchpoint Media podcasts with their respective genre. 
1- Music
2- TV & Movies
3- Comedy
4- Technology (Connected Hospital Podcast)
5- Games & Hobbies
10- Science (The Exam Room Podcast)
12- Society & Culture (Intersection Podcast)
14 – Business (Touchpoint Podcast)

Here are a few consumer takeaways from each genre that impacts Touchpoint Media podcasts.

4- The Technology Genre Profile
Avid fans of technology podcasts are heavy consumers of liquor, baby food, tea, beer, and cookies.

10 -The Science Genre Profile
Avid fans of science podcasts are heavy consumers of liquor, per care, baby food, pet food and tobacco.

12 – The Society and Culture Genre Profile
Avid fans of society and culture (arts) are heavy consumers of liquor, oral care, cookies, bath products, and skin care.

14 – The Business Genre Profile
Avid fans of business podcasts are heavy consumers of liquor, wine, household cleaners, soap/bath products, and beer.

Notice any similarities??? I think it is funny that Touchpoint Media needs to either buy a liquor store, talk about liquor, have a virtual liquor tasting, or find bourbon brands as advertisers!

References:
*1 – Westwood One – 5 THINGS YOU DIDN’T KNOW ABOUT PODCAST LISTENING

*2 – Nielsen Insights – DO YOU KNOW YOUR PODCAST LISTENER?

*3 – Nielsen Podcast Insights – Q3 Report

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