You still need an idea for your audio ads… sorry: Eardrum’s Tristan Viney

As part of today’s Interactive Advertising Bureau presentation of the latest research in interactive audio, Omny Studio’s CEO Sharon Taylor and Eardrum’s Creative Director Tristan Viney discussed creative formats for audio platforms.
Specialist audio creative house Eardrum works with radio and audio platforms to make great advertisements that work effectively in the audio medium. Omny provides infrastructure to implement podcasts and embedded audio.
Taylor gave examples of how to tailor advertising messages for different audio platforms.
60% of her clients say they want to use podcasts in 2018 as part of their advertising and brand strategies.
Viney spoke about choosing the right strategy for your audio advertising:

“When they say this, we ask them ‘why do you want to make a podcast?’ You can buy ads in any podcast, but if you want to make your own branded podcast, you need to know why you are doing it. For example Launch Victoria used a branded podcast strategy to create six episodes called Scale Up, it was about start up businesses. It was not about Launch Victoria, it was about tips for startup companies. Open for Business, a podcast made by Gimlet USA, is sponsored by EBay, but it talks about the logistics of starting companies and does not ram the EBay brand down your throat. This is the way to approach a branded podcast,” he said.
Pre and post roll credits
Half of Omny’s clients intend to use pre, mid and post roll advertising in podcasts during the next 12 months. “You can get a lot of value by branding with established podcasts with pre and mid rolls and live reads. Live reads let the podcaster engage directly with the brand,” Taylor told the audience.
Native live reads
62% of Omny’s clients intend to use embedded live reads in the next 12 months, often with additional video. Omny Studio has a DSP which can now ad video over the top of the content to facilitate this kind of advertising.

Quality audio
Tristan Viney’s presentation concentrated on ways to create quality audio which cuts through to the audience.
“You still need an idea… sorry,” he said, stressing that it is not effective just to buy spots in streams, podcasts and other new audio platforms, advertisers and their clients must have a strategy to make best use of audio on these platforms.
“When you write for audio you have to write for the spoken word. Our ears are tuned to pick up things that are not authentic in audio ads, so don’t write stilted scripts or ads that shout at people” he said.
Audio branding
Viney asked the audience to think of their print branding. “You have decided on colours, fonts, etcetera, but in audio so many people do not think of their audio brand in these terms… you are invisible without an audio brand!”
He used the example of Netflix which has a simple red print colour logo plus audio. Each time a Netflix movie plays, the red logo and the audio logo play. In contrast, the competitor Stan does not have an audio logo. “Netflix has such an advantage over Stan because the audio logo builds brand recognition,” said Viney.
“Your eyes can ignore things, but your ears don’t. Audio logos are important,” he said.

Another example of complete audio branding is Intel. Viney displayed a reviewer who was captivated by the Intel audio logo which played when he opened the product box.

Other tips for making great audio ads that work on the range of new platforms available to advertisers these days include:
Speak with one voice
“Use a single voiceover voice for your brand across every platform. It builds trust and familiarity in a brand.”

Writing Copy: relevant, targeted and personal
Make it relevant to the platform.
“There is no one-size-fits-all. Don’t put your radio ad on spotify. Tailor it for the different medium.
“If you are advertising on voice assistants – don’t treat the platform like radio.  Google tried that unsuccessfully with a promotion of Beauty and the Beast, but users considered it an intrusion in what they wanted from their voice assistant,” said Viney


With Spotify, the advertisers should consider the way people consume this medium. “When an ad does come along in Spotify, it runs the risk of being an interruption, make it conversational, relevant and understated,” advised Viney. “You already have their attention, no need to shout at theme… have relevant conversations and talk about your product in the context of what they are listening to,” he said.
One of the best things about audio is that it is so personal. Visey used an NRMA ad which only played in the middle of night as an example of personal targeting.
The ad asked ‘who would I call if I broke down right now?’ In the middle of the night the answer to that question is probably no one, because none of your friends would like to be woken up at night and asked to drive out to help you. The message was, if you join the NRMA, then there will always be someone to help you if you break down in the middle of the night.
Another example of personal targeting is Holden’s ads on Spotify. The ads only play when listeners are driving in your car, the person’s phone knows that they are driving and sends this information to Spotify, which can then trigger ads for the consumer to hear when the are driving.
“Spotify advertising is different from radio advertising… craft the ads differently, don’t just place your radio ad on this platform” said Viney. “They are two very separate platforms which require slightly different types of ads.”
3D audio is going to be one of the next big things on the new platforms: “Immersive 3D audio can put you in the glass as the ice cubes are added and the Coke is poured… we think there is a lot of potential in immersive audio for some clients,” said Visey.
“These are emerging channels, tactically buying and measuring the effect of ads on these channels is important for advertisers… in the next year they will be doing some really interesting stuff on these platforms,” he said.
Research is showing that double the number of agencies are planning to use podcasts in the coming year. According to Spotify’s Dan Robins, that platform has progressed from “some randoms dipping their toe in the water to now having always-on continuous advertising activity on our platform. We have seen hyper growth in this part of the world, brands want to see scale before they dive in – we are getting it now,” he said.
Last year about 20% of advertisers were trying the new audio platforms, now, according to Robins, the figure is moving to 50%. “Audio is where online video was about 4 years ago, at the time they didn’t know what creative and scheduling worked, now they know. Online audio will get there.”
Smart speakers
Everyone is in a race, it’s a marathon not a sprint, according to Robins, who gave the example of bank advertisements that are money tips. “You need hundreds of daily tips, so banks can be making lots of small podcast episodes to tap into the market of people who want money tips on their smart speakers as part of their audio experience.”
View some of the panel discussion from today’s event below.


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