Native advertising, sponsored content marketing, and branded content are used interchangeably within the digital advertising industry. It’s a powerful form of advertising that drives consumer reaction and drives activation. But how often are you hearing podcast advertising interchanged within this digital portfolio pool? The answer…not enough!
The rise and embracing of native advertising should provide a boon to the podcasting industry as it’s a natural extension to what the platform already organically delivers. But how many sales professionals working within the podcasting industry truly understand the meaning of native advertising vs. content marketing vs. branded content, specifically when we are speaking with potential advertisers?
We must be able to clearly make the distinction; so here’s a closer look at each of the terms, from the perspective of a digital marketer:
We must be able to clearly make the distinction:
“A form of paid media where the ad experience follows the natural form and function of the user experience in which it is placed. Communication about a brand or service that is defined by sharing two or more of the form, context or functionality of its host media platform
A strategic marketing approach focused on creating and distributing valuable, relevant, and consistent content to attract and retain a clearly-defined audience – and ultimately, to drive profitable customer action. Communication by or about a brand, service or corporation that is not advertising and which shares all of the look (or manner), context and functionality of its host media or platform.
Where media companies are becoming producers of brand content, yet they typically do not allow this content to be distributed on other platforms beyond their own. Contrary to embedded marketing, where the brand is placed within the content, branded content places the content within the brand
It’s imperative – and unforgivable for those of us that sell podcast advertising – to not be able to clearly articulate how podcast advertising organically syncs up to native advertising budgets. It’s dismissive and arrogant not to understand the difference between the three advertising arms, as we cannot allow digital advertisers to continue to discount the power of podcast advertising campaigns. It’s time to control the narrative, especially when communicating with brands and digital buyers. We must speak their language, in order to sell ours.
So how does podcasting sync up beautifully to Native Advertising?
Organic host-read ads are embedded into the fabric of a show deliver amplified engagement with the audience
Podcast hosts typically choose and approve their advertisers, as they understand the content and attitudes their audience has – so, a host-read ad must align with the show organically
Authenticity Matters: As hosts read a sponsored ad, the audience feels a unique kinship to the brand. Many hosts go to great lengths to makes sure new brands have on-boarding calls in order to align messaging that is clear and concise, yet natural and organic.
Hosts Like To Use Products They Pitch: Typically, the hosts would have already tried out the product prior to doing a live read. The listener can hear it in the hosts voice when ‘they love a product’. This creates the unique charm between the host, the brand, and the listener.
Activations and customer reactions can be clearly measured through vanity URLs and sales results, allowing clients to validate the ROI
Consumers desire quality, engaging content. This is exactly what podcast advertising provides, in an authentic, organic manner. Authenticity is imperative to native content and brand publishing programs.
While extending existing digital native campaigns to the podcasting world makes sense for advertisers, we must do a better job to further educate digital buyers (and companies) on the value and responsiveness of podcast advertising.
Podfluencers are Brand Amabassadors
Digital ‘Influencer’ campaigns require ‘in-sync coordination’ to ensure messages are consistent and amplified on multiple consumer channels. More often than not, the podcast medium has not been recognized by digital buyers as one of these channels. Bought, earned and owned media must be integrated for maxim effectiveness. That’s why podcast advertising along with the explosion of native content positions the podcast industry favorably. The power of a ‘podfluencer’ and the impact they have on their audience can’t be underestimated.
The Industry Must Be Better Advocates & More Savvy At Digital
At the end of the day, we as advocates for the podcast industry must make sure we are a part of the native advertising conversation. This only comes with consistent education and advocacy while demanding that your podcast sales teams have a clear grasp of digital terminology and integrated strategies.
Our industry must understand the complex data-driven strategies being executed by our digital brethren. If we act as a ‘one-trick pony’, only focusing on audio delivery, we are doing the podcast industry (and our clients) a huge huge disservice.
Let’s forge a united front and make sure podcasting advertising becomes a part of ‘every integrated digital conversation’. In my eyes, Podcast Advertising is the purest form of native content!
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