Ad buyers and publishers are taking notice of the opportunities presented by video podcasts as publishers experiment with accompanying video. This has led to more conversations about what opportunities this format can provide to brands and which investment teams handle the buys, according to agency executives who spoke with Digiday.

As publishers’ podcast executives ramp up their experimentation with accompanying video, ad buyers are starting to have more conversations about what opportunities this format can provide to brands and which investment teams handle the buys. Despite the fact that technically ads in video podcasts are in digital video, audio investment teams at ad agencies are continuing to handle the media plans. That’s because video podcast ads are typically tied to audio podcast ad deals, according to agency executives.

“I think that you’re seeing a little mini gold rush here that people are responding to. Word got out that people actually like consuming podcasts… on YouTube, and now the marketplace is reorganizing around that,” said Dan Granger, CEO of audio ad agency Oxford Road.

With the recent fervor around video podcasts, ad buyers discussed the advertising opportunities for brands in video podcasts and how they are organizing their investment teams to manage the crossover from audio to video. The typical video podcast ad format is similar to the backbone of podcast audio advertising: personal endorsements, according to agency executives. Video “opens up a lot of branding opportunities” like unboxings, product placement, and brand logos.

“Because there is a host and because it has roots in podcasts, we would be interested in how we can… work ourselves into the content itself,” said Molly Schultz, SVP of integrated investment at UM.

However, cross-device attribution is not possible through a platform like YouTube, meaning it’s difficult to track a podcast listener on a mobile device to a desktop viewer on the platform. For clients that are measuring success across upper funnel KPIs, this can be a great opportunity to come up with creative ideas, brand integrations, and larger sponsorship opportunities, said Maria Tullin, VP and Managing Director of Advanced and Digital Audio at Horizon Media. But for lower funnel clients focused on cost per action, customer acquisition cost, or return on advertising spend, it can be a harder sell.

Nonetheless, advertisers are finding ways to monetize video podcasts with standard ads, sponsorships, and brand integrations. Bleacher Report, for example, sells sponsorships for its live-streamed podcast recordings of shows like “The Voncast” and “Taylor X” aired on its B/R app. The resulting video assets are then distributed on social media and YouTube, where, depending on the commitment level of the advertiser, they can monetize the video with standard ads. State Farm and Chase have sponsored B/R’s podcast livestreams, according to Tyler Price, VP of content development and production at Bleacher Report.

“If you don’t have a video asset attached to your audio format now, you’re leaving audience on the table, and you’re leaving money on the table,” Price said.

Categorized in: