You can, yes, absolutely. But the reality is it’s a little more complicated to get from can to should.
While many B2B firms use more traditional marketing vehicles to buy digital media, some are investing in newer ways to get attention, especially younger, more affluent, educated, business-oriented listeners. That’s a group of people many companies would love to target.
So yes, podcasts are worth paying attention to when it comes to listening and marketing. The most popular podcast publisher in the US (according to Podtrac analytics) is, not surprisingly, NPR. And B2B brands are NPR podcasts most prolific source of revenue.
Like who, you may ask? Well, says Gina Garrubbo, president and CEO of National Public Media, “Many of our current direct-response advertisers are B2B brands like Squarespace or ZipRecruiter.” That would seem to make sense when you consider those younger, affluent, educated, business-savvy listeners.
So if you market for a B2B, would underwriting and/or supporting a trending podcast work for you?
“It really depends on your budget,” says FocalPoint president Brien Richmond. “More and more B2B organizations are experimenting with podcasts, and those numbers are definitely on the rise. If your budget allows the wiggle room to experiment on underwriting a podcast that is steadily gaining subscribers, go for it.”
It helps tht podcast audiences are growing rather quickly. eMarketer forecasts that by 2022, 83.8 million people in the US will listen to at least one podcast per month. That’s a rise from 73.0 million people in 2018. However, there is still a lack of hard data in measuring the efficacy of podcasts, one to another.
There is still a fairly low success rate (money spent versus money coming back in) with advertising on podcasts, but on the plus side, your company is definitely differentiating itself from others in your field.
Rion Swartz, Senior Director of Marketing and Brand Management, LegalZoom says, “We’ve lumped podcasts into our radio budget. In my mind, it’s an evolution of terrestrial radio. In some cases, it’s even better than terrestrial radio as far as an advertising vehicle.”
Other companies are not ready to plunge in with media buys. They are on the sidelines, collecting data points and noting which organizations are buying time on what podcasts.
“There are likely certain industries and brands that have more relevance for podcasts than others,” sums up Richmond. “They are definitely hot and getting hotter. We’re definitely keeping an eye on them.”