Mobile game ads help podcast makers reach millions of listeners. Wondering, how is this possible.
The idea is a mobile in-game reward ad is served to players who click on it to gain digital loot. In return, the user downloads a podcast episode in the background.
By tapping on the ad, which may be enticingly rewarded with in-game rewards, players automatically download an episode from a podcast they may have never heard before. It allows the podcast company to claim an additional download and a new listener.
A win-win for all! Game developers require advertising revenue, especially from non-gaming apps. Users receive their favorite rewards in-game. Moreover, podcasters win because downloads are their main metric. However, this brings into question who can be recognized as a podcast listener and what time span to be considered as a download. This is debatable and analysts suggest that it could devalue the main metrics -downloads and listens for ad sales.
According to Bloomberg, ads are inserted into episodes as soon as they are downloaded, so whether or not a user listens long enough for the ads to play, another impression is counted by network sales. A person can listen to an episode even without an internet connection if they tap on the in-app play button on their mobile device. A 30-minute episode’s ads are placed at that point of download, so even if a consumer listens to only 10 minutes, the mid-roll ad at the 15-minute mark is already there, ready to be heard, and counted.
The numbers say it all
Jun Group, an intermediary company helps podcast networks that are enjoying downloads in the mobile game space. As Ashley Carman stated in Bloomberg, the price charged to podcast networks for the ads depends on the target criteria- demographics or attracting listeners. The starting rate for a 20-second ad is $27 per 1,000 website page views. Eventually, podcast networks will be able to sell the resulting audience to brand advertisers for a nice profit over what Jun Group is paid.
There is no mention in the podcast industry of embracing the video game strategy. In fact, podcast ad deals are determined by downloads and not the listening behavior or numbers that remain undisclosed. Additionally, podcast ads are not programmatic which means the ads with downloads are not served in real time. In other words, the ad is still counted even if the podcast is deleted without ever being opened. Podcaster Scott Saslov, who uses the in-game reward ads tactic told Bloomberg,
“Don’t rely on [in-game ads] exclusively because at some point you’re going to want as much organic and authentic growth as you can get.”
He also pointed out that in-game reward ads aren’t exclusive to podcasters but publishers also use this strategy to increase traffic.
The audio industry is growing
There are heavy investments in the audio industry. Companies are making the best possible move to recover it. They are increasing the reach of podcasts and bringing more ad revenue. The way ads are placed in podcasts has changed significantly over the last couple of years. It is projected that the industry will generate $2 billion in revenue this year and $4 billion by 2024. The growth is not because of a high number of podcasts or listening but advances in ad tech that allows advertisers to better target audiences and encourage them to spend more money.
Interesting Read: Targetspot and Gadsme Unites to Launch In-Game Audio Ads
- Neha Mehta
- Neha started her journey as a financial professional but soon realized her passion for writing and is now living her dreams as a content writer. Her goal is to enlighten the audience on various topics through her writing and in-depth research. She is geeky and friendly. When not busy writing, she is spending time with her little one or travelling.
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