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New Research from Acast Reveals 87% of US Podcast Marketers See More Than Double Their Return on Investment for Every Dollar Spent on Podcast Advertising

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May 25, 2023

Study finds US marketers are 34 times more likely to increase budgets when reinvesting in the medium after their first podcast campaign

Acast, the world’s largest independent podcast company, today released new research on the effectiveness of podcasting for return on ad spend among US marketers. According to the study, which surveyed marketers who have spent on multiple podcast campaigns before, podcasts deliver a high return on ad spend, with more than two-thirds (67%) of US marketers saying for every dollar spent on podcasts they see a $2 to $6 return. An additional 20% of US marketers said that for every dollar spent on podcasts, they see a return of $6 or more – the most of any other tested medium.

With this strong return, US marketers are also increasing their investments in the space. According to this research, 68% of US marketers said that their second campaign had a higher budget than their first podcast advertising campaign. In fact, marketers in this study were 34 times more likely to say they had increased their budgets from the first campaign to the second, indicating the overall effectiveness of the medium.

“There may have never been a more crucial time than now for marketers to deliver the highest possible return on every dollar they spend. Our research proves that advertisers understand the value of podcasting for return on ad spend, but it also shows that there is still a knowledge gap in the market for how to buy podcast ads most effectively,” said Gabriella Gregoris, Group Business Director of National Performance at Acast. “There is a myth in our industry that successful media buys happen at the show level, when in fact, it’s the marketers who invest in podcast audiences' interests and behaviors who see the strongest returns on their investments. Acast offers the most precise targeting and comprehensive planning capabilities to increase those profit margins.”

Acast research shows that more than half (51%) of US marketers believe that investing in large podcasts delivers the best return on ad spend. However, podcast listeners on small–sized shows were 90% more likely to welcome more ads on the podcast and 29% more likely to say ads on the podcast were very influential than listeners of large–sized podcasts, according to research from Acast earlier this year.  

When it comes to reaching these audiences, US marketers agree that first party data targeting is the most effective approach. In fact, in this study, US marketers were most likely to say that first party data targeting had the highest return on ad spend than any other tested form of targeting. Additionally, more than one-third (34%) of US marketers said that contextually-based targeting solutions would deliver return on ad spend in both the $2-$4 range as well as the $4-$6 range.

To enable this audience-first podcasting strategy, Acast offers a variety of targeting solutions to fit any campaign needs. At the end of 2022, Acast launched a first-to-market first party data targeting solution. Through partnerships with key providers including LiveRamp and Adobe, Acast is enabling advertisers to leverage their own first party data to target valuable podcast audiences at scale. Acast also offers a suite of Conversational Targeting capabilities that enable advertisers to target precisely down to the podcast episode level as well as towards specific words and phrases spoken within a podcast episode.

Although marketers are seeing the value of podcast audiences and increasing their spend on the medium, podcasting still makes up less than 1% of total digital ad spend in the US. According to eMarketer, the podcast advertising market amassed to $1.7 billion in the region last year, however that’s just 0.68% of the total digital advertising spend, which is valued at $248.7 billion. 

According to Acast’s findings, nearly two-thirds (63%) of US podcast marketers said that based on performance, podcasts deserved 7% – 14% of total marketing spend. Looking at the total digital advertising market valuation from 2022, this accounts for $17.4 billion – $34.8 billion of ad spend that experienced US podcast marketers believe should be allocated to podcasting, indicating both the effectiveness and strong growth potential of the medium.

To learn more about how to increase return on ad spend through podcast advertising, please contact

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