Podcast Ads: Small Shows, Get Creative to Survive


See you soon: We’ll be off on Monday for Memorial Day, returning Tuesday, May 31 with your daily news, tips, and events.

PodMov Daily: Friday, May 27

Episode 654: Week Download Complete

Podcast Ads: Small Shows, Get Creative to Survive

“Big advertisers like to spend money on big shows simply because it's easier than spending money on smaller shows,” writes Evo Terra in Podcast Pontifications. Of the hundreds of millions being poured ‘into podcasting,’ very few dollars make it to the lower top – not to mention the middle.

Smaller podcasts can’t compete if they try to sell ads the way major networks do. Through iHeart, Spotify, and the like, brands have a menu of effective, efficient buys. Instead, Terra suggests bucking the format. “Don't even talk about CPM…Change the narrative by offering something different.”

Just as you’re making the show only you can make, you can offer the campaign no one else can offer. “Get creative, turning your sponsor into a partner, and craft a segment with them that sounds like content in your episode because it is content in your episode.” Think smaller companies within your niche.

Playing to your creative strengths is a smart move. In March, Tom Webster dropped an impossible-sounding statistic: Half of weekly podcast listeners could be reached by advertising across just four networks. In the spring of 2021, it would have taken a buy across seven networks to achieve that reach.

This week, Gabriel Soto of Edison Research shared new findings: “If one were to simply buy the top ten biggest shows in podcasting an advertiser would be reaching one-third of all weekly podcast listeners.” Somehow even wilder, buying the top 500 shows would reach three-fourths of all weekly listeners.

As consolidation of podcast advertising continues, the only way not to panic (or give up on monetization) is to work with reality. Right now, we’re developing a piece about independent podcasters and how they’ve managed to partner with niche businesses. The struggle is real, but solutions are out there.

There are just four days left to rack up those referrals! Through the rest of May, every referral earns a ‘raffle ticket’ for a $200 Amazon card. One lucky reader will be randomly selected on the 31st.

Your unique sharing link is at the bottom of your email. Step 1: Surprise your podcast people with something they’ll actually want to read. Step 2: Cross your fingers. Thank you all for subscribing!

The visionary starts with a clean sheet of paper, and re-imagines the world.

Here's what else is going on:

  • Lucky numbers: YouTube analytics are getting more granular. A new display lets creators break down data by content type, reports Matt Binder of Mashable. YouTube Studio will divide reach and engagement stats into tabs: Video, Shorts, Live, and Posts. The updates should kick in by May 31.
  • Fine print: “Liability in Podcasting: Record Responsibly” continues this Wednesday, June 1 with an attorney-led discussion about defamation and libel. From the Black Podcasters Association powered by Afros & Audio, and led by the Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press. Free registration. 
  • Hard truth: An outstanding producer has to serve as the listeners’ proxy, writes Slate journalist and podcaster June Thomas (Working). “Is there a basic fact or question the hosts haven’t covered that would give listeners a clearer understanding of the topic under discussion?” Be a hero and call it out.
  • Box jump: “Organise Your Workflow with Notion” from Podcode is coming up Wednesday, June 8. Founder and podcast coach Mark Steadman will demonstrate how the free app can help with tracking ideas, wrangling guests, and collecting promo assets for each episode. Free registration.

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