2018 Full-Year IAB Podcast Ad Revenue Report

Third Annual Podcast Ad Revenue Study by IAB and PwC Reports Significant Growth 1

The third annual Podcast Revenue Report by IAB and PwC confirms solid and increasing growth in the US podcast advertising marketplace. The report, which surveyed top US revenue producing podcast companies on various data points, reports continued growth trends at the individual publisher level. The report adds an independent market sizing element, which echoes the pattern of increasing marketwide revenues into 2021 and beyond.

This year’s report finds marketers spent $479 million to advertise on podcasts in the U.S., an uptick of 53 percent from $314 million in 2017.  Based on market trends and surveys returned by significant podcast companies in the US, the report projects that revenues will top $1 billion in 2021.

Driving the growth in revenues is podcast listening which continues to surge in the US, increasing 7% in one year. More than half of the 12+ population has listened.[1] Meanwhile, podcast listeners continue to respond well to ads, scoring high marks in terms of engagement with ads as well as responsiveness.[2]

“The tremendous growth in podcast ad spending is further evidence that podcasts continue to deliver strong results for both brand and direct response advertisers,” said Mark McCrery, CEO of Authentic and Podtrac.  “Spending by content category also maps closely to the podcast categories with the largest audiences, and with more and more places to discover podcasts, the medium is on a strong growth path.”

Today’s consumer marketplace, driven by technologies like connected cars and smart speakers has created an Audio-First environment where consumers use voice commands and receive responses audibly. Whether it’s while driving a car, cooking dinner, or working out, audio is the constant companion of today’s consumer and this has created great demand for content. Podcast publishers offer enormous variety and quality that is a key driver of growth not just in audience size but also in the amount of time people spend listening.

“Because of the strong growth trends, some of the biggest brand marketers in the country have really embraced podcast advertising and made it a regular component of their overall media mix,” says Ken Lagana, Head of Sales and Marketing, Megaphone.

The third annual Podcast Revenue Report by IAB and PwC report contains key insights into the business of podcast advertising. Technology driven economies like dynamically inserted ads and programmatic buying are on the rise, making it easier for advertisers to invest. Direct to Consumer and financial companies spent more on podcast advertising than any other business categories.

This year’s report was sponsored by 17 member companies of the IAB Audio Committee: ABC Radio, Adswizz, AudioBoom, Authentic, ESPN, Gimlet, iHeartMedia, Market Enginuity, National Public Media, Megaphone LLC, Podcast One, Inc., PMM, Inc., RawVoice, Stitcher, WarnerMedia, Westwood One, and Wondery.

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[1] Edison Research, The Podcast Consumer 2019
[2] Acast Audio Intelligence Report 2018

View all IAB spend and revenue research.