Podcast advertising revenue set to reach $220 million in 2017 driven by mobile listeners

Podcast listening habits have steadily increased over the last few years with mobile devices playing a major role in the success of the format. With 64% of podcasts now being listened to on smartphones or tablet devices, the audio format presents a prime opportunity for advertisers to reach consumers when they’re most engaged.

Indeed, podcast advertising revenue is set to reach a whopping $220 million in 2017. That’s an increase of 85% from $119 million in 2016, according to the Interactive Advertising Bureau’s (IAB) latest research based on actual first-party data on podcast ad revenue.

The IAB Podcast Advertising Revenue Study finds that podcast advertising has gained momentum over the last two years. Revenues grew 73% between 2015 to 2016. It has been a steady growth at 228% per month.

However the research also noted that advertisers generally prefer podcast adverts which are read by a host as opposed to those which are pre-produced. The share of pre-produced ads increased slightly by 3 percentage points in 2016.

Randall Rothenberg, President and CEO, IAB, explains:

“The IAB Podcast Advertising Revenue Study proves two things – the whole world is listening, and brands are taking notice. From the remarkable growth of podcast ad revenue, we’re seeing an ancient axiom being proved yet again: great rewards go to those who surprise and delight their fellow humans.”

Direct response campaigns dipped slightly between 2015 to 2016, whilst awareness campaigns grew with branded content making a revenue debut.

Chris Kuist, Senior Vice President, Research and Impact, IAB, adds:

“This study is the first to directly survey the podcast industry’s significant revenue generators – which means it’s the most accurate view of the medium’s largest players compiled to date. We partnered with PwC US for this study to build upon our longstanding relationship in producing the IAB Internet Advertising Revenue Report, which is widely considered ‘the gold standard.’ This research carries on that tradition, with a laser focus on what is clearly one of the industry’s most dynamic areas.”