The business model behind most podcasts is simple. Generate a large audience, then sell it to an advertiser who gets to make a brief pitch for thirty or sixty seconds.
The goal for a podcast created by a brand tends to be very different. Most branded podcasts are not being directly monetized. Instead, a podcast is a tool that helps a brand to solve a business problem.
Problems our clients podcasts have solved include teaching staff and clients more about the benefits of a product, creating high-level networking opportunities within an industry or distributing detailed information in a very human, accessible and memorable way.
For brands in podcasting, gaining an audience is not a goal in itself. It’s a means to achieving business goals. Reaching the right audience and engaging that audience is what makes a successful podcast.
We can measure that.
Anyone can turn off your podcast at any time and select a different one. If people listen to a podcast all the way through they likely enjoyed it. For brands, this counts as a positive brand experience.
Analytics show us how long people listen to each episode and which episodes listeners enjoyed the most. This is the audience engagement rate we pay the most attention to when evaluating the success of a podcast. It means your message is being heard, digested and understood.
Metrics alone won’t show what listeners are thinking after they hear to an episode. Do they remember what brand is behind the podcast? Did it change their impression of that brand? Did it influence future decisions?
Fortunately, the answers to these questions can be found by conducting a brand lift study. This involves assembling a panel of people who have listened to the podcast and asking them a number of questions about their experience. A brand lift study is an investment but the data you receive is invaluable.
The number of downloads and listens is not the first number we look at but it doesn’t mean we ignore it. Podcasting is about engaging with the right audience. A quality audience who will help you solve your business problem. If you can add quantity to that, even better! This is why we work so closely with clients to market their podcasts and generate bigger audience.
Putting It All Together
To help you measure the ROI, all of our podcasts include reports which show audience engagement, the most engaged episodes, demographic information including gender, age and location and of course download numbers.
In the end, ROI will mean something different to every company depending on their individual goals. Some see ROI as a purely financial metric, while others look at success in terms of building relationships, reaching new consumers, and fostering engagement.
If you have any questions about how to measure ROI for your brand podcast, email us or book a call. We’re happy to walk you through the process.