Why Podcasters are Essential to Your Influencer Marketing Efforts

By Audacy Insights Team

State of Audio Series

Influencers are everywhere these days, so it’s no surprise that influencer marketing is a growing priority for advertisers, particularly through social media. But leading brands have already branched out beyond the gram and are flocking to podcast hosts to tap into the power of these influential voices. And for good reason.

Podcasts are on fire, with no sign of slowing down. These hosts drive a uniquely deep connection between listeners. They get real, they go deep, and listeners love that intimate bond. These tight relationships create a gorgeous halo effect for brands. Podcast listeners feel good about ads delivered from their trusted voices. 

So how are these podcast advertising pros taking advantage of this channel and leveling up their game?

1. Understand How Pod Listeners Feel About Your Ads

Listeners tune into podcasts for the trusted voices on their favorite shows – and that trust often extends seamlessly into the brand messages that keep those shows running. For brands looking to supercharge ROI, here are four reasons perceptive advertisers are partnering with popular podcasters.

2. Become Part of the Story

A rose by any other name would smell as sweet – and an ad that doesn’t sound like an ad would sound even sweeter. Your favorite host sharing their authentic take on favorite new products has listeners leaning in. Powered by innovative brand-host partnerships, these native ads are skyrocketing in popularity because they humanize brand messages with expert voices that have already earned listener trust. Whether it’s custom episodes, specialized brand segments and interviews, or product reviews and unboxing, listeners are staying tuned in to hear the rest of the story. 

3. Not Just Quantity. Go for Quality.

Savvy advertisers today realize that size may matter, but it isn’t everything. A big celebrity show could be great for brand awareness, but testing with a dozen smaller, thriving podcasts with loyal fans in their target demos could be their golden ticket to tangible success.

Brands are letting go and becoming more trusting. They’re testing to find the right mix of voices. And they are learning that impressions don’t automatically equate to sales. More critical is caring about the personalities behind the content, the quality of listeners, and alignment with shows to create the right brand fit.

Agnes Kozera
Co-Founder, Podcorn, An Audacy Company

4. How Macy’s Does It: The Power of Influencers

And it’s not just emerging advertisers who are proving to be the best disruptors. 

Who’s getting it right? Macy’s is, for one. This classic retailer is one of America’s most recognizable brands, in part because it has always found ways to remain relevant with younger demos. After advertising on Audio for decades, Macy’s has now expanded into influencer partnerships to reach younger audiences and drive meaningful connections… and action. 

Around key shopping holidays, Macy’s partnered with podcast stars such as Emma Chamberlain, who personally curated gift lists for her audience’s shopping pleasure at Macy’s. She promoted the lists on her podcast and amplified them through her popular social media channels.

There’s so much power in the podcast personalities. We’ve partnered with Emma Chamberlain… She’s so unbelievably influential and has a lot of power with Gen Z, especially our shoppers, and we’ve seen it in our results.

Kristy Carruba
Director of Audio Strategy & Planning, Macy’s

Emma Chamberlain – Anything Goes Podcast

So when you’re looking to ramp up your influencer marketing efforts – and that should be now! – think about the podcasters that build emotional connections with audiences you’re trying to reach. Work with these influencers to create tailored brand segments that will break through. And test multiple messages, formats and shows to find out what moves your audience the most. 

Want more of the latest Audio insights? Check out the STATE OF AUDIO guide for trends from the listeners, advertisers, and creators revolutionizing Audio.

Want to talk more about reaching your target audience?

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Source: Audacy State of Audio: The Disruptors, May 2022

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