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Talk to me: voice technology, are we there yet?

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Hamish McPharlin
Head of Insight at BBC Global News
Sophie Hind
Managing Director at Voiceworks
Imogen Watson
Journalist at The Drum

Nielsen releases podcast ad effectiveness tool as UK audiences expected to swell

Podcast audiences expected to grow

Reflecting the fact that 75% of UK advertisers are upping spend in podcasts, Nielsen has unveiled a measurement tool to gauge effectiveness in this growing ad space.

Nielsen believes that the UK’s 6 million weekly podcast listeners will double in the next three years. It is putting the tools in place for brands to “quantify the impact and effectiveness of their podcast ads” with the Nielsen Podcast Brand Effect.

The tool has already been running in the US and so far the results have found that 57% of podcast ads tested outperformed pre-roll video in driving purchase intent and 70% of respondents agreed that the podcast ads increased their awareness of products and services.

The solution measures brand metrics, such as ad recall, brand familiarity, purchase and recommendation intent – as well as content metrics, which include overall rating, host rating, engagement, and intent to share content.

Amanda Woodley, head of platforms at Nielsen, said: “With the number of weekly podcast listeners almost doubling in the last five years, advertisers, agencies and media owners, recognise the benefits of this new medium to reach consumers. However, though podcasts are now becoming an essential part of media plans, there remains a broad lack of understanding about their quantifiable effectiveness.

"Nielsen Podcast Brand Effect will help advertisers to unlock this understanding so they know what formats, types of podcast and audiences work best for their brand.”

The emphasis on podcasting is growing as doubt rises around the future of third party cookies, a cornerstone of the current programmatic advertising industry. Podcasting, however, provides media owners rich first-party data and theoretically a highly engaged audience.

Reflecting this goldrush, Spotify is on a podcast acquisition spree, Global signed a deal with ITV to piggyback Love Island with an official podcast, and Bauer Media recently hired a podcast editor. Meanwhile, just this week BBC Global News revealed that it will run a branded podcast wing.

Podcasts have also opened up new audio audiences to advertisers. The Midas Digital Audio Survey, Spring 2019 found that more than half of podcast listeners (4.5m) do not stream music.

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