IAB Report: Agencies plan to increase their investment in audio

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Audience attention and engagement were the key drivers for audio investment.

90% of agencies have used audio advertising this year, with 83% of media agencies including streaming digital audio advertising as a significant or regular part of their activity.

These numbers have been published in IAB Australia’s Australian Audio State of the Nation Report, now in its 8th year. The report also found agencies plan to increase their investment in streaming audio (61%) and podcasts (64%) over the coming year.

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The Audio Advertising State of the Nation Report is supported by 15 media and tech companies, as well as industry body Commercial Radio & Audio. It covers usage and attitudes to advertising in broadcast radio, streaming digital audio, DAB+ and podcasts.

Fieldwork was conducted in December 2023 with 219 survey responses collected from the advertising buy-side including media, creative and digital agencies, agency trading desks and brands/companies that buy advertising.

Respondents said that the greatest opportunities for audio digital advertising growth lay in sophisticated targeting and personalisation, standardising ways to measure incremental reach, attribution, and cross-platform effectiveness along with improving programmatic supply.  

Ad buyers also identified the use of AI, particularly around content and ad creation, as a potential driver of future growth in digital audio and podcast advertising.

Brand building was the dominant campaign objective for media agencies using digital audio advertising, with 87% using streaming audio and 80% using podcast advertising for brand awareness. Fewer buyers used it for lower funnel activities such as increasing sales or conversions – 33% for streaming and 30% for podcasts. 

iab audio graph

Audience attention and engagement were the key drivers for audio investment (62%) followed by incremental reach (52%) and the ability to complement other media (50%). 

When it came to buying digital audio advertising programmatically, data and targeting were the predominant factors, and the price rose to be the second most important driver.

Entertainment and lifestyle podcasts were the most popular genre for agency advertisers, with buyers also expressing a preference for advertising in Australian podcast content.

iab audio graph

Gai Le Roy, CEO of IAB Australia said: “Over the last 12 months, digital audio and podcasting has been one of the fastest growing areas of the digital advertising ecosystem and the results in the latest Audio Advertising State of the Nation Report indicate that this will continue throughout 2024. With buyers appreciating the complementary nature of audio with other digital opportunities, we are likely to see digital being increasingly included in omni-channel campaigns and welcoming a range of new advertisers to the power of audio advertising.“

Richard Palmer, co-chair of the IAB Audio Council and director of marketing development (APAC) at Triton Digital commented: “There’s no doubt the future sounds good for audio digital with most advertisers now consistently considering digital audio advertising to reach highly engaged audiences. I look forward to the IAB Audio Council’s continued collaboration to help the industry make the most of these opportunities in creative, privacy compliant and effective ways.”

See Also: Online advertising spend reaches $14.7 billion, IAB Australia reports

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