How Podcasts Use Programmatic Advertising

By Alison Osborne

When it comes to podcast advertising there has been a new term that we’ve seen pop up quite frequently and that’s "programmatic advertising".

Podcast advertisers are beginning to become more familiar with the benefits of this form of advertising and we can expect to only see it grow in 2020.


But to begin, let’s define what programmatic advertising even is. Basically, it’s the use of AI and algorithms to buy and optimize ads in real-time. Using this type of automation for ads is much more efficient, leading to higher conversions and lower customer acquisition costs.

Programmatic Advertising and Podcasts


Overall, podcast listeners tend to be more welcoming to ads. One of the key reasons being that they’re read by the host of the series, an individual that listeners already feel a connection towards. Through programmatic ads, podcasts can deliver listeners even more targeted and relevant ad content. Matt Turck from Megaphone states that: 


“We will see a real push into programmatic buying in 2020. It’s a small portion of buying today; however, it will have the fastest growth rate of any segment in the space doubling to tripling in scale. The winners buying this way will develop creative specifically for the podcast medium, respecting the listener with an inclusive conversational tone.”


Additionally, Spotify just announced the release of Streaming Ad Insertion (SAI) on its platform in 2020. Advertisers and podcasters will be able to use Spotify’s streaming capabilities to have more targeted and relevant ads placed into their content for listeners. This also opens the door to key data like ad impressions, frequency, reach, anonymized age, gender and device type - information that has not been available to podcasters before. 


To begin, Spotify will be testing SAI on their own original series since they have access to the backend of the content and the data that it collects. But, expect this service to hopefully open to general podcasters in 2020!