January 11, 2023
In recent years, companies have felt a greater urgency to show that they care about the world around them and not just their bottom line. This is a response to the public’s changing expectations – 82% of consumers want the brands they buy to stand for a greater mission or purposes. If companies want to thrive in today’s environment, they need to demonstrate corporate social responsibility to show that their values align with the consumers of their brand.
To do this, companies must communicate how they are being good neighbors to current and potential customers. These days there are more options than ever to reach consumers, but connecting authentically, in a trusted environment that your target demographic frequents, is an efficient way of showcasing responsible corporate citizenship.
Podcasting is an excellent medium to showcase your corporate social responsibility message. The medium has mass reach – each week, more Americans listen to podcasts than have Netflix accounts – and audiences have deep connection with hosts, making them more engaged and receptive to messages from brands supporting their favorite show.
When choosing a media platform, brands want to know that audiences are fully engaged with the content. This aids in advertising receptivity, brand recall and brand favorability. In an age when consumers are more distracted than ever (second screens, social media), podcasting offers an intimate connection where consumers are – literally – tuned into the content. 81% of podcast listeners pay close attention to what they listen to. Listeners are actively listening to their favorite shows, and 92% listen while they are alone so they are not distracted by other people and can fully engage with the show.
More and more, consumers are tuning out advertising content (hello, ad blockers), but that is not the case with podcasting. A majority of listeners (51%) pay more attention to advertising on podcasts than on other forms of media, so when you advertise on a podcast you will reach a highly engaged audience that is more likely to pay attention to your ad than on other mediums.
It’s important for an audience to pay attention to a sponsor message, but even more important is for them to trust it. How do you know that an audience will believe your message of corporate social responsibility?
Podcasts have a uniquely high level of trust due to the relationship that hosts have developed with their audiences. 80% of podcast listeners trust recommendations from hosts (which is not far below how much they trust friends and family). Podcast audiences feel a kinship with the hosts of their favorite shows, so when the host recommends a brand, product or service, they are much more likely to remember it. Many listeners believe hosts to be selective about the products and messages they choose to share – in turn, they feel a message coming from that host is genuine and trustworthy. The bond between the host and the listener carries through to when the host reads an ad, which creates a better experience for the listener and a more positive response to a sponsor’s message.
If you use a podcast to share your company’s corporate social responsibility message, the audience will be more likely to believe your message as authentic.
While podcasting is a growing, trusted medium with highly engaged audiences, there are many factors to look for when considering which show or podcast network to partner with.
The most important thing is to make sure that the audience is a good match for your brand and its message. For example, if your corporate social responsibility message is centered around how your company is helping the environment (whether it is through your products or separate activism), then you will want to reach an audience that is environmentally conscious and more likely to make eco-friendly purchases. Aligning with a show and an audience that shares your values will help your message stand out and be remembered.
Another important factor in choosing an advertising partner is prioritizing brand safety and avoiding misinformation. You can create a moving corporate social responsibility message, but audiences will not accept it if it appears next to misinformation. 62% of consumers believe that advertisers, publishers, and agencies are equally responsible for ads appearing near misinformation. As a result, it’s essential for brands to work with a partner that can ensure a trusted ad environment for their message to reach an engaged and receptive audience.
If you think podcasting would be a good medium for your CSR campaign and are looking for a partner to get your message out there, contact Soundrise.