Branded audio. It’s officially a thing, and what’s interesting (or surprising) is the kind of brands that this region of content is attracting.
Hotel brands, for instance. InterContinental Hotels has currently released two 20-minute Stories of the InterContinental Life-branded podcasts, with more to come in 2017. Unexpected? Yes. But InterContinental Hotels isn’t alone. As marketers struggle to find creative ways to engage consumers with their advertising, General Electrics, Tequila Avión, HBO and State Farm Insurance are busy producing their own podcasts, hoping to capture the buzz of hits Serial and This American Life, while targeting a captive audience with a light marketing touch.
Podcasting is already a hugely competitive sphere, and to be successful, it can require steep budgets and giving up an element of creative control; so it’s not for every brand. But if you have a story to tell, this is a great place to share it. The important thing to remember is, with the vast choice, podcasts must offer some value for listeners; it’s got to be worth people’s time. If you crack that, you’re set.