Audio lets customers get to know your brand on a deeper level. To build a following that truly believes in what your brand has to say, live out a purpose that is bigger than promoting a brand.
As you improve your brand’s marketing strategy in 2022, there’s one element you should definitely be including: audio. In the past, brand messaging was delivered visually, but there’s been a recent uptick in the number of people streaming audio content and using audio-driven social platforms. For instance, in 2020, households that streamed audio content listened 32% longer than they did in 2019. And in 2021, about 2% more of the U.S. population over the age of 12 began listening on a weekly basis.
Your business is likely already investing in other marketing mediums, such as social media, a company blog, and email. But if you’re not in the audio space, you’re missing out on an opportunity to communicate through a medium that a lot of people prefer. This is critical at the discovery and valuation stage when you’re trying to raise awareness and instill a sense of trust. By utilizing audio, you can meet customers where they are and establish genuine brand credibility.
Building Trust Through Audio
There’s a lot of potential in the audio space because the human voice fosters a sense of connection. When your message is conveyed through inflections and tone, it provides a richer experience for customers than written words alone. Plus, the warmth of the voice you use can boost the authenticity of the message, which, in turn, builds trust with your audience.
On platforms where messages are unscripted, such as many podcasts and social audio, people get to “know” the hosts. They learn about their experiences, knowledge, humor, and beliefs. As people listen to more of the hosts’ content, they build one-sided relationships with them. So when sponsor breaks happen, they’re more likely to show interest in the products being advertised. In fact, 53% of people search for more information about products advertised on a podcast, and 29% make a purchase.
Just make sure that any audio messaging you invest in is authentic and authoritative. This way, you can draw in audiences and prove your value without using traditional sales tactics. Let your audio content do the heavy lifting for you.
Investing in Audio Messaging
Ready to incorporate audio messaging into your marketing plan? Here are the top three things to keep in mind when assessing what audio opportunities are available for your brand:
Determine what your brand personality is.
Before investing in audio content opportunities, first reflect on your brand. Once you define your brand’s personality, you’ll be able to discern where to start. If you want your brand to come across as authoritative, for instance, it might be in your best interest to create your own podcast to share knowledge. If your brand should be entertaining, you may want to use audio within social videos. Knowing your brand helps you make the right decisions moving forward.
Find out where your target audience is, and make a point to be there.
Identifying the listening trends of your target audience will help you figure out which channels you should explore. Where is your target audience spending time, and what are they listening to? How long do they listen for? Once you can answer these questions, you can decide which platform to pursue and which topics to cover. For instance, if you’re looking into podcasts, it would be helpful to know that 43% of male and 39% of female podcast listeners tune in monthly.
Make sure to set aside enough time for the channel you choose.
Like any marketing effort, it takes time to craft audio messaging. What percentage of your week can you spend on audio content? Are you committed to finding what works best for your brand? For example, starting up a podcast and building an audience can take 18 months or more, according to Gary Vaynerchuk. If this commitment isn’t feasible for you, there are other opportunities available. You could create ads for other podcasts that reach your target audience or sponsor a person or organization to create one on your behalf.
As you start investing in audio messaging, remember to keep your audience front and center. To build a following that truly believes in what your brand has to say, you need to be helpful, not self-centered. Living out a purpose that is bigger than promoting a brand is how you build credibility.
About the author :
David Ciccarelli is the Founder and CEO at Voices, a voice talent marketplace with over 2 million members. His company has been written about in The New York Times, CNNMoney, BusinessWeek, Entrepreneur Magazine and Fast Company. David has appeared on Business News Network and The Globe and Mail TV. He is currently attending Harvard Business School, and is a frequent guest speaker at industry conferences.