Influencer Marketing: Podcast Advertising with Heather Osgood from True Native Media (episode 072)

by April Buencamino-dy

Heather’s been in marketing for a couple of decades – and for the last five years has been specialising in podcast advertising at True Native Media. There she and her team connect brands with independent podcasters to create great stories and ultimately drive sales. Frankly, I can’t think of anyone better to give us the 101 on podcast advertising!

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About Heather

Heather started her career in radio and newspaper advertising before she moved on and had her own trade show production company.

When she sold the business, she had so much free time on her hands that she started to listen to podcasts. She became intrigued with the medium and the fact that most of the shows she listened to didn’t have ads in them.

She knew there was an opportunity for podcast advertising, so she founded True Native Media that works specifically with host-read endorsement ads, which really is influencer marketing.

Components Of A Good Host-read Ad

For Heather, a good ad is made up of four elements:

  • Brings in the listener, like any other form of content
  • Has a unique selling proposition
  • Has a call-to-action
  • Contains a specific link promo code that allows you to track results

Authentic And Organic Experience

With podcast ads, what you want to create is an authentic and organic listening experience.

You would want the ad to come from the podcast host, but give them guidelines to follow in coming up with the script. That being said, also allow them some flexibility so they can create something which will resonate with their audience.

For How Long Should You Run Podcast Ads?

This would depend on the type of ad you’re running, and there are two types:

  • Embedded baked-in ads, which means that the ad is going to be within one episode
  • Dynamically-inserted ads are ones that are electronically inserted into a full catalogue of shows

Most shows are set up to do one or the other, and what you want is to make sure you are getting at least a three-impression frequency with an audience member.

Tips For Going Into Podcast Advertising

Heather recommends starting out with 5 podcasts because some will work and some will not, due to the following factors:

  1. An ad’s effectiveness depends on how much the host actually likes the product.
  2. Audience engagement, whereby some podcasts only have transient audiences. They may listen to a few episodes but have not really built a relationship with the host, which may affect the performance of an ad.
  3. The actual ad read can make a difference in determining the success of an ad.

Another advice Heather gives is to go for smaller to mid-level podcasts, test them out first, and move forward based on data and analytics.

Insider Tips

If we’ve inspired someone to take their first step with influencer marketing – what do they need to know to give themselves the best chance of success?

Identify your target audience and find podcasts that also have the same type of audience.

Look at marketplaces such as AdvertiseCast, Podcorn, or Zvook where you can check thousands of different podcasts and their audience profiles.

Once you’ve started of course you’ve got to ‘keep optimising’! So what’s your favourite way to improve influencer marketing performance?

Make sure you have a tracking mechanism in place, which will help you in determining if you are reaching your campaign goals.

Sites like Podsights or Chartable allow you to use pixel tracking for attribution that can help you track results of your podcast advertising.

If someone listening wants to learn more about influencer marketing is there one cheap/free resource you’d recommend?

Get True Native Media’s comprehensive guide to podcast ad campaigns which will help you in your podcast advertising buying.

Crystal ball time – what’s coming up in the next 6-12 months that we should be getting ready for in influencer marketing?

Programmatic or pre-recorded ads are becoming more popular in this space, so now is the time to optimise on influencer marketing ads. These are the ones wherein the host is going to actually try the product and talk about it.

Take advantage of influencer marketing, and build and maintain strong relationships with your hosts.

Interview Links

Heather on Social media:

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