Three podcast principles for braver audio creativity

Tom Roach, Acast Australia’s creative strategy lead
By Tom Roach, Acast Australia’s creative strategy lead | 25 September 2020
Tom Roach

One of the most underrated heroes of our time is the Old El Paso Girl. We all know her. We should all aspire to be like her.

The Old El Paso Girl was the courageous child who, when traditional family values blurred the vision of possibility, dared to break convention. Overcoming an impasse between soft or hard tacos she, now famously, said “why don’t we have both?”.

This maverick should be posted on the walls of every creative studio in the world. She should be celebrated and revered within the creative community.

Why? Because she was willing to look beyond what had been done before. She was bold enough to break free from traditional expectations. When given the opportunity, she redefined the options.

These qualities should motivate creative thinkers and inspire creative output in podcasting.

In our world, audio is searching for brave Old El Paso girls. With a history primarily rooted in commercial radio advertising, we’re faced with a generic mould of creative output.

Whilst some commercial audio is innovative, it’s fair to say we all have a general idea of what a radio ad sounds like. But we have an opportunity to look at podcast creative differently.

Podcast advertising is the new blank canvas for creative communicators. It gives advertisers the flexibility and freedom to experiment, and to shift the perception of what an audio ad should sound like.

It’s a new medium to surprise, entertain, inform and connect with an audience that has less preconceived ideas of how audio advertising works. Big Kev would be excited.

So, to help set your course, think of these three podcast principles as you embark on your creative journey.

  1. Intimacy: It’s rare that a medium engages an audience on such a personal level. You’re literally in a listener’s ear. This presents a huge opportunity for brands to communicate intimately with their target audience. How will you speak directly to your audience in a manner that is relatable? How will you improve their relationship with your brand?
  2. Interests: As an on-demand medium, audiences have actively chosen to listen to specific podcast content – and, be it news, politics or lifestyle driven, that content is often more tailored to a niche interest than mainstream media. This presents creatives with an opportunity to tap into those interests with culturally relevant creative. To succeed, brands need to consider how they can make their commercial message contextually aligned. How will your brand connect with the interests of the listener?
  3. Ingenuity: Audio advertising has evolved, and new tech innovations allow creatives to experiment and deliver brand messages in new and interesting ways. Binaural audio allows you to create a 3D audience experience, immersing listeners in a world of sound that’s deep and enriched with meaning. Ad set targeting allows you to deliver audio ads sequentially, enabling a multi-layer ad message while avoiding ad fatigue. This tech is helping push a new wave of audio advertising that brands can harness. How will you use these advancements to break traditional audio advertising expectations?

Are you, like the Old El Paso Girl, brave enough to break conventions? To experiment with podcast advertising, and to be bold? The opportunity is there — pick up your taco and transform your blank (podcast) canvas.

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