Job recruitment companies have been among podcasting’s most active ad buyers during the past year. Consider ZipRecruiter was the biggest advertiser on the top 400 podcasts during every month from January through May, according to Magellan. And when it was finally dethroned last month, it still ranked second out of the more than 6,000 brands that advertised on podcasts in June. Now via Nielsen and Westwood One, there’s new research on how staffing firms are benefiting from being such ardent podcast advertisers.
To conduct the study, Nielsen had an online panel of 800 podcast listeners aged 25-54 listen to an episode of Westwood One’s 83 Weeks with Eric Bischoff sports podcast. Half the group heard the test ad included while the other half had an ad-free version of the show. After they were done listening, Nielsen then asked them several questions to determine whether the version that included the ad had any impact on the brand metrics for the undisclosed client.
The biggest finding was how strong the podcast was in aiding recall of the staffing firm. Among those who heard the ad, one-in-three could list the company name on their own versus just 2% of those who didn’t hear the spot. Aided recall was even stronger. Three out of four of those exposed remembered the brand name with a prompt from the Nielsen survey rep, compared to 10% of those who didn’t hear the ad.
Beyond simply recalling the brand name, the podcast ad also had a double-digit impact on the affinity, intent to seek information, purchase intent, and recommendation intent based on exposure to the podcast ad campaign.
In fact, raising brand awareness—which saw a 67% lift from the podcast ad—was the least impacted of all the metrics. The biggest lift was among those who, after hearing the ad, said they planned to get more information about the staffing firm. That metric rose 73% after the listener was exposed to the podcast ad. A similarly-sized growth rate was recorded for intent to recommend the staffing firm.
In a blog post about the study, Cumulus Media Director of Content Marketing Lauren Vetrano says the results also show that compared to its competitors, the staffing firm’s podcast ad generated strong performance for key brand measures including familiarity, affinity, intent to seek information, purchase intent, and recommendation intent.
The podcast ad also left listeners with a variety of warm-and-fuzzy feelings about the staffing firm. Among those that heard the spot, 49% said they felt it’s a company that would treat them with respect compared to 34% who didn’t hear the podcast ad. Vetrano says the data shows 59% of exposed listeners felt the company offered them hope in their job search. More than half (55%) felt they were able to build personal relationships with employment professionals. And 50% of the exposed saw the ability to connect with a mentor or advisor in their field of interest. “Post-exposure, positive associations were up with an average lift of 44%,” she says.
While Westwood One didn’t release how the staffing company used the data or whether it meant that it opted to spend more money on podcasts, the company says the Nielsen study does show that Nielsen is able to quantify the effectiveness of podcast ad campaigns. But even more important for the medium’s long-term growth prospects, the study’s results show beyond a short-term sales lift for clients that podcasts can do more than help them meet that quarter’s revenue target.
“With boosts in recall, key brand metrics, and positive associations, the campaign proves podcasts to be an important media platform for the staffing firm to build its brand,” Vetrano says.