Podcast Advertising Drives Sales: NCSolutions Consumer Survey 


Podcasts are going mainstream and consumers who subscribe to six or more (which NCS calls “Power Subscribers”) do more than simply listen to their favourite programs; they actively discover and buy the products advertised in the audiocast. Sixty-eight per cent of Power Subscribers have made a purchase compared to 42 per cent of all podcast listeners according to a new consumer sentiment survey commissioned by NCSolutions (NCS), the leading company for improving advertising effectiveness for the consumer packaged goods (CPG) ecosystem.

Many podcast listeners are repeat buyers: 34 per cent say they’ve purchased products two or more times after hearing an advertisement on a podcast, while 17 per cent have bought products they’ve heard featured four or more times. In addition, 29 per cent of all podcast listeners have used a promotional code they’ve heard during an audiocast.

Beginning this month, podcast publishers, CPG advertisers and their agencies can use NCSolutions Sales Effect Measurement Studies to understand the full sales impact of their podcast advertising campaigns. With one of the most robust and unique purchase data sets in the market, NCS has been measuring the incremental sales impact of advertising across all major media for more than 11 years. Podcasts are the newest addition to the NCS measurement suite.

“As their popularity has grown, podcasts have become a new advertising medium for CPG brands,” said Lance Brothers, chief revenue officer, NCSolutions. “Podcast advertising hit a significant tipping point in 2021, with spending expected to reach $1 billion. As CPG brands look to justify further investments in the medium, they will need performance metrics that demonstrate the impact of their brands’ podcast advertising on incremental sales.”


One-third of podcast listeners (33 per cent) say ads during a podcast are a good way for advertisers to reach them, and 27 per cent find ads are enjoyable to listen to. However, Power Subscribers are even more likely to welcome podcast advertising, finding it useful and relevant, the survey findings indicate. Among Power Subscribers, 42 per cent feel podcast advertising is a good way for brands to reach out to them.

One-third (32 per cent) of Power Subscribers feel podcast advertising helps them learn about unique products they wouldn’t have discovered elsewhere. More than half (53 per cent) of Power Subscribers say advertising helps them discover new products and 28 per cent of Power Subscribers say podcast advertisements are relevant to them.

Also Read: Why Are Podcasts Perking Marketers’ Ears? 

Three of the top five types of products purchased as a result of podcast advertising are CPG-related: food and beverage, beauty and grooming and health and wellness. According to the survey, 42 per cent of all listeners purchased food and beverage products after hearing a podcast advertisement, while 35 per cent purchased beauty and grooming products and 31 per cent bought health and wellness items.


Podcast listeners and subscribers are receptive to the host’s influence. When they hear a host endorse a product, 36 per cent of all listeners say they will research the item and 28 per cent say they’re more likely to pay attention or remember the product. In addition, nearly one-third (32 per cent) of Power Subscribers remember products endorsed by the host and 30 per cent of this type of subscriber say they trust the podcaster’s opinion of a product.

“A podcast is a personal medium. Hosts are very influential when in the ears of subscribers and partnering with a podcaster who speaks to your audience can be a very powerful strategy,” said Linda Dupree, CEO NCSolutions. “Together, CPG brands have a real opportunity to connect and influence a listener’s purchase decisions; however just like any advertising campaign, there is a need to measure outcomes to fully realize the sales impact.”


Since the start of 2020, interest in podcasts has accelerated with more than one in three (34 per cent) podcast listeners having started listening during that period. Among all podcast listeners, 88 per cent say the time they’ve spent listening has either stayed the same or increased during the pandemic. Over half (56 per cent) of Power Subscribers say they’re listening more frequently as well.