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As screenless media continues to grow, measurement must move past direct response metrics to be properly attributed.

The State of Streaming Audio

According to a recent study of consumer adoption of digital media, The Infinite Dial 2018 by Edison Research and Triton Digital, 64% of Americans (12+) listen to online radio, totaling roughly 180 million consumers each month. On average, American consumers spend over 13 hours a week listening to online radio, according to Targetspot. These listeners have three major methods of consumption:

  • Radio station streams — where the same content that is broadcast is also streamed and delivered to many people at the same time.
  • Pureplay stations — Offer programmed channels or channels that are personalized through algorithms based on listener choices. Content is delivered 1:1 to each listener.
  • On-Demand Services — Allow listeners to select songs and build playlists. Content is delivered 1:1 to each listener.

Audio Is on When Screens Are Not

While the natural assumption is that increased digital audio is directly connected to the growth of smartphone usage, the growth of personalized or 1:1 audio content is not a smartphone-only phenomenon. Digital audio has become truly cross-platform and has changed the way people engage with audio in their homes as well as on the go. Currently, 39 million people own a Smart Speaker, and according to the Spring 2018 Smart Audio Report from NPR and Edison Research, 70% of smart speaker owners listen to more audio since they got their smart speaker. As the use of these devices expands — it’s projected to reach 76.5 million users by 2020 — use of a screen proportionally diminishes. This lack of screen time may have a large impact on the way that digital audio is credited for downstream sales.

This shift in media consumption has opened the door to innovative companies that aim to upgrade the audio advertising experience for brands and consumers alike.  “A diverse group of new devices has ushered in an audio renaissance that continues to impact the way listeners tune into their screenless content,” stated Michael Orfaly, Client Strategist. “Targetspot is leveraging this diversity to reach audiences across multiple devices, leading to better results for advertisers and a deeper, more seamless experience for listeners.”

Connecting the Dots in a World Without Clicks

With consumers tuning in across multiple devices, it’s more important than ever to measure the impact of each of these touchpoints. Digital audio has been hailed for being an extremely trackable medium with relatively straightforward impression, completion, and download tracking. However, conversion and attribution for digital audio campaigns have been challenged by the requirement of companion display ads, redemption codes, or direct audio response. Today, Cuebiq’s partnership with Targetspot expands audio advertisers’ ability to measure the impact of one of the most flexible forms of media on offline behaviors. By utilizing Cuebiq’s footfall attribution, advertisers can understand the incremental impact of audio advertising on store visitation.

Brand-Safe Media Meets Brand-Safe Measurement

Digital audio platforms offer several advantages that appeal to brand-safety conscious advertisers. The ability to select content channels and control an ad’s context is a major attractor for many advertisers. Additionally, placement of content where the listeners are actively engaged in the selection of programming creates positive listening environments for advertiser messaging. To maintain that positive intimacy with the consumer while measuring offline impact requires a measurement partner that takes a transparent approach to offline measurement. Cuebiq is the only location partner that is focused on future-proof privacy compliance. We only use data from users who are able to opt in and out of data collection and data sharing with the same ease that they self-select their streaming audio content.

Learn more about Cuebiq’s future-proofed privacy stance in Adweek.

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Leslie Langan
About the Author

Leslie Langan, Director of Product Marketing

Leslie is a self-proclaimed advertising nerd who is passionate about emerging technology, media, and startups. She is a graduate of San Jose State University and holds a degree in advertising.