It is commonly accepted wisdom that a talent read by a podcast host or AM/FM radio personality drives powerful brand impact and sales effect. Now, a new study from System1, the creative effectiveness measurement leader, uncovers how talent reads impact a brand’s market share and short-term sales effect.
System1 star rating: The more you feel, the more you buy
Ads tested by System1 are assigned one to five stars based on the positive emotional response consumers have to an ad. Only 17% of ads tested have the sufficient emotional impact to attain three to five stars.
The more stars an ad achieves, the greater the advertiser’s long-term market share growth:
- Two-star ads generate a 0.5% increase in long-term share growth
- Three-star ads lift long-term share by 1%
- Four-star ads grow a brands long-term share by 2%
- Five-star ads expand long-term brand share by 3 points
System1: Spike rating predicts short term sales effect (8-10 weeks)
System1 assigns a “spike rating” to each ad tested to assess the short-term sales effect. The speed of branding and the emotional intensity of the ad are the two drivers of the spike rating creative score.
55% of ads achieve a spike rating of 1.1 (good) or better. It’s interesting to note that a strong spike rating for short-term sales effect is not based on the hard sell of an ad. Rather, it is the intensity of the positive emotional impact of an ad that causes short-term sales lift along with how well consumers can associate it with the advertiser.
Comparing talent-read ad response among listeners of the podcast to the general population
System1 compared ad response to host-read ads among two major podcast audiences and a general population sample. Any difference in the response to the talent reads would reflect the impact of host-read ads among podcast listeners.
Host-voiced ads tested among the podcast audience generate an additional System1 creative effectiveness star rating versus the general population
In both cases, the emotional effect of hearing the podcast host improved the ad response enough to cause a long-term increase in the market share of the brand.
Among the podcast audience, System1 found the host-read ad generates a happiness score 2X greater than the general population
System1 research reveals that happiness is the emotion that is most strongly associated with long-term brand share growth.
John Kearon, Orlando Wood, and Tom Ewing in their book System1: Unlocking Profitable Growth say, “If something makes us feel happy … it’s probably a good option.”
System1 short-term sales effect spike rating grows 16% to 18% among podcast listeners exposed to the host-read ad versus the general population
Direct response advertisers have long quantified the sales effect of the talent read. System1’s new findings validate the decades of experience from direct marketers who carefully track the sales effect of their ads.
The Association of National Advertisers “Attention Pathway”: Why audio ads are so powerful at driving brand lift and sales effect
The ANA created this visual to represent how media and creative work together to help advertisers get noticed, hold attention, and impact memory.
- “Get Noticed – this is primarily the job of media. Advertising requires an environment that fosters attention.
- Hold Attention – it’s vital to keep the consumer focused on the ad. In some circumstances, this can be measured using duration. This requires a stable media placement and interesting creative.
- Impact Memory – with attention now assured, the creative must deliver a brand message that affects the short- or long-term memory of the person paying attention to the ad.”
A series of new studies reveals that audio ad formats generate exceptional levels of attention, concentration, host trust, and engagement.
Dentsu: Audio ads outperform video for attention and brand recall, according to Lumen study
A just released major study from one of the world’s largest advertising agencies reveals audio ads drive superior attentiveness scores to linear TV, social, online video, and digital display. Dentsu also found AM/FM radio and podcasts were the more cost-efficient media when measured via “attentiveness CPM.”
MAGNA/Vox Media: Podcasters are more influential than social media influencers
While social media influencers receive fleeting recognition and a few seconds of attention in a consumer’s social feeds, podcast listeners spend hours listening to their favorite hosts. It’s not surprising that MAGNA, a major media agency, recently published a study in partnership with Vox Media that found podcast hosts are five times more influential than social media influencers.
Jacobs Media Techsurvey 2023: Personalities outpace music as the main reason for listening to AM/FM radio
The Jacobs Media study found the younger the AM/FM radio listener, the more AM/FM radio personalities are the main reason for listening.
MARU/Matchbox: Listeners feel connected to their favorite AM/FM radio DJs, personalities, and shows
A national study conducted by MARU/Matchbox reveals listeners develop loyal relationships with AM/FM radio personalities based on humor, a local feel, and trust.
Extraordinary levels of audio attentiveness combined with host engagement means the lowest degree of ad avoidance
Of all advertising, MARU/Matchbox reports AM/FM radio ads, print, podcasts, and AM/FM radio streaming ads lead for being noticed, holding attention, and being skipped the least. Digital ad formats such as intrusive pop ups, social media, banner ads, and online video experience high levels of ad skipping and ad avoidance.
- Host-voiced ads tested among the podcast audience generate an additional System1 creative effectiveness star rating versus the general population
- Among the podcast audience, System1 found the host-read ad generates a happiness score 2X greater than the general population
- System1 short-term sales effect spike rating grows 16% to 18% among podcast listeners exposed to the host-read ad versus the general population
- Dentsu: Audio ads outperform video for attention and brand recall, according to Lumen study
- MAGNA/Vox Media: Podcasters are more influential than social media influencers
- Jacobs Media Techsurvey 2023: Personalities outpace music as the main reason for listening to AM/FM radio
- MARU/Matchbox: Listeners feel connected to their favorite AM/FM radio DJs, personalities, and shows
- Extraordinary levels of audio attentiveness combined with host engagement means the lowest degree of ad avoidance
Pierre Bouvard is Chief Insights Officer of the Cumulus Media | Westwood One Audio Active Group®.
Contact the Insights team at CorpMarketing@westwoodone.com.