In another sign of the growing importance of streaming audio to advertisers, the nation’s top rep firm is opening a programmatic sales division for digital audio. Katz Media Group has launched Audiology by Katz with a goal of helping advertisers and agencies leverage the power of audio to connect with consumers.

While Katz already offered digital audio to advertisers, the rep firm’s new sales division adds a programmatic audio and podcast marketplace that includes access to running programmatic campaigns across smart speakers. With programmatic inventory across 120+ connected devices and smart speakers, Audiology is integrated with top DSPs (demand side platforms used by advertisers) and is available in both self-service and managed-service capacities.

The new division will be led by David Krulewich, Senior VP of Programmatic Sales for Katz Digital, the division that Audiology lives in. Krulewich joined Katz in November 2017 after four years as Senior Sales Manager, Programmatic Media & Data at New York-based Connexity, an ecommerce marketing automation platform. Krulewich will report to Scott Porretti, Executive VP of Katz Digital.

“The addition of Audiology is part of Katz’s ever-expanding position in the digital marketplace,” said Katz CEO Mark Gray. “This new digital audio programmatic sales division enables us to continue to invest even more time and resources into evangelizing audio on behalf of our partners in the rapidly expanding programmatic space.”

Digital audio ads totaled $2.25 billion last year compared to $1.8 billion in 2017, according to the Interactive Advertising Bureau, a 23% increase. The IAB estimates two-thirds of Americans aged 12 and older listened to online audio in 2018, while podcasts reached 73 million people last year, a 7% increase from the prior year.

“With digital audio now the number one form of mobile media consumption, no programmatic media campaign is complete without a digital audio component,” Porretti said. “Audiology by Katz gives brands the solution they need to execute effective data-driven, scalable programmatic audio campaigns.”