Help for a Team told to sponsor podcasts
February 1, 2017 1:21 PM   Subscribe

Our small marketing team helps many clients, and we're being told to start sponsoring podcasts as part of our orchestrated strategy.

Does anyone in the hive have good starter links or suggestions to provide for this emerging area? There's a lot of online noise, but little signal that we've found.
posted by Arch1 to Technology (5 answers total) 3 users marked this as a favorite
This is written for podcasters but I learned a lot from it:
posted by michaelh at 1:31 PM on February 1, 2017 [1 favorite]

I am not in this part of the biz, but generally all the podcast companies you hear about are in the business of matching your clients up as sponsors to their podcasts. So that includes podcast hosters like RawVoice, Libsyn, Podbean, Spreaker -- they handle mostly smaller or more niche podcasts if that's your market. Podcast networks like Panoply, Podcast ONE, Earwolf, Acast, etc do the same or work through ad networks like Midroll. They target national-level advertisers. Shows on both ends of the scale - the very biggest and the very smallest - may handle sponsorships themselves.

If you ping the hosting companies I mentioned above, they will likely be very helpful in laying out the landscape of small marketing clients looking to connect with small podcasters and the going rates.

After that, the fastest way in practice may be to search for podcasts in an area you are interested in and then reach out directly to them.
posted by troyer at 2:13 PM on February 1, 2017

Best answer: NiemanLab has a good two-part series about the podcast boom and sponsorships: An island no more: Inside the business of the podcasting boom and And now a word from our sponsor: Host-read ads and the play between niche and scale.

When thinking about podcast sponsorship you want:

—To set your expectations for long-term brand-building rather than short-term sales or offerings. If you're looking to just do a month or two, it's probably a mistake unless it's a daily podcast.
—To have other goals firmly in place. To break a local or regional product onto the national scene? To associate with high-quality podcast products whose halos can benefit your brand or identity? To accumulate data to compare with your other marketing ROI? Something else?
—To find out how much "ad load" each podcast already has and to think about whether that leaves room for your message. Are they already doing a 90-second ad three minutes in, another at mid-point, and another at the end? Do you listen to their podcast and find yourself frustrated with how long it takes them to get to the actual show?
—To think about the value of host-read messaging. It usually costs more but it can be more effective. If the hosts will even do it.
—To think about matching desired demographics most of all. Many first-time sponsors feel like they have to have a perfect subject matter match for their product. A car ad on a car podcast, for example. This is usually a mistake. What you really want to do is find out who your best customers are, demographically, and then find a podcast that most matches those demographics, disregarding (mostly) the content of the podcast.
—To know each podcast's annual download numbers, and rolling 90-day average, as best they can offer them. But the perfect demographic match can beat huge download numbers, so don't get too caught up in these numbers.
—Look for podcasts that can give you a double or triple whammy. For example, can they also give you web ads? Mentions in their email newsletters? Actual radio broadcast sponsorship space? In other words, if they are offering the right audience, how many times can they hit them up for you and reinforce your message?

My own national radio show, which is also distributed as a popular podcast, offers sponsorship space. If you have questions for someone on that end of the business, hit me up by MeFi Mail and I'll see if I can help.
posted by Mo Nickels at 5:35 PM on February 1, 2017 [1 favorite]

PS: Just looked at your profile and it looks like you're deep in the marketing biz, so please excuse the part of my advice meant for beginners.
posted by Mo Nickels at 5:48 PM on February 1, 2017

Have you seen advertisecast? I just ran across it and it might (?) be helpful to you?
posted by janey47 at 11:23 AM on February 2, 2017

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