IAB Report shows media agencies are leaning into programmatic audio

Advertisers are leaning into programmatic audio according to the IAB Australian Audio State of the Nation Report released today.

The Report, which is in its sixth year, found that 64% of media agencies intend to use programmatic for audio advertising over the next 12 months, up from 59% in 2021.

Media agency use of streaming digital audio advertising and podcast advertising has shown steady and consistent growth over the last six years.

Seven in ten (73%) of media agencies now have streaming digital audio advertising as a regular part of their activity, while 59% of media agencies now regularly consider podcast advertising (increasing from 36% last year).

The Report found that digital audio has continued to increase its importance in the role of brand building with 87% of media agencies using streaming digital audio advertising and 84% using podcast advertising to increase brand awareness.

Perhaps surprisingly though just 46% of those with experience in audio advertising consistency use an audio or sonic logo as a branding asset in their creative.

While brand building was key, the Report noted an increase in the use of audio advertising across most objectives as investment increases including lower funnel objectives with nearly six in ten agencies using streaming audio advertising to support specific promotions and more than one quarter to drive keyword search activity.

Gai Le Roy, CEO of IAB Australia commented: “After a year when lockdowns kept changing consumer purchasing behaviour, it’s not surprising that marketers have expanded their use of streaming audio from brand building to supporting short term objectives to drive sales.”

“It is also great sign of a maturing market to see a reduction in the number of agencies citing lack of effectiveness proof as a barrier to investment in digital audio.”

Though agencies expressed interest in opportunities for greater integration of streaming digital audio and podcasts with other audio channels and into cross digital campaign campaigns, just 40% of media agencies reported planning and buying all audio activities within the same team.

The removal of planning and buying silos, along with standardising measurement and increasing the supply of omni channel programmatic inventory were all identified as areas for growth in 2022.

COVID19 had a minimal impact on media agencies use of streaming digital audio and podcast advertising over the last year, with the Report noting that 84% of media agencies used streaming digital audio and 71% used podcast advertising in 2021.

For the first time, Wave 6 of the Report assessed the use of specific podcast types, noting that 62% of agencies used advertising in podcast original content, while 50% opted to use advertising in podcast catch up radio content.

The Audio Advertising State of the Nation Report is a collaborative industry project, supported by 15 different media and tech companies, as well as industry body Commercial Radio Australia. Fieldwork was conducted by independent research company Hoop Group across December 2021 and January 2022 with 198 decision making respondents

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