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Political Ads: Everything You Need To Know as A Podcaster in an Election Cycle

Election season is fast approaching and it can be daunting to navigate as a podcaster.  There is a great deal of opportunity that comes with elections. According to a report by CNBC, campaign spending in the 2022 election cycle topped $6.4 billion. This could be an opportunity to grab a piece of that pie, but there’s a lot to consider as you decide if accepting political ads is right for you and your podcast. 

In this guide we will explore everything you need to know about political advertising: how to control your options, the opportunities presented by accepting it on you podcast, and the potential risks associated with doing so.

How Much Control Do I Have Over Which Ads Play on My Show?

In the Podbean Ads Marketplace

Political ads through Podbean’s Ads Marketplace are primarily delivered programmatically. Since programmatic ads are pulled in real time you can’t approve or opt out of ads individually.  As such: Opting in to political ads on the Podbean Ads Marketplace allows political ads from all parties and candidates the ability to advertise on your podcast.  If that does not match your vision for your podcast, go to your Ads Marketplace setup and make sure the option “Opt out” is selected for political ads.

Note: accounts are opted out by default. None the less, its good to check that your settings are as you expect them to be.

Are Political Ads Right For My Podcast?

The Opportunities:

Increased Revenue: This one is fairly obvious. Political ads tend to have higher budgets and faster cycles compared to more traditional advertisements. Accepting political ads can provide a financial boost to your podcast. You can use that boost to invest in your show and outreach to help you grow your audience and revenue long term.

Bringing Your Podcast Into The Conversation: As a slightly less intuitive benefit, political ads can help to establish your show as being at the cutting edge of what’s going on in the world.  Political ads have a way of bubbling to the top of conversation at a personal, regional and national level. Including them in your podcast increases the likelihood that your podcast will be part of the conversation as well.

The Risks:

Polarizing Nature: Political ads can be highly divisive as they exist exclusively to promote specific candidates, parties, or ideologies. Your audience may associate you with those candidates and ideas even if they are not reflective of your values.  Its important to consider that your listeners may have a differing political identity or beliefs. This can risk declines in downloads, followers and engagement

Specific Fit: Political ads tend to be direct and bold in tone. You will want to consider if that tone is in keeping with your particular style of podcast.  As an example: If you run a meditation podcast your listeners likely won’t appreciate an interruption in the session to hear about tax plans. Its always best to think through if the likely tone and tenor of political advertising matches your intended audience mindset.

Navigating the political advertising landscape can be tricky. It’s important to weigh the pros and cons carefully to maintain your audience’s trust while seizing the unique opportunity that election cycle present for your show. If you have any questions about your show’s political advertising settings, our support team is happy to help!

1 comment on “Political Ads: Everything You Need To Know as A Podcaster in an Election Cycle

  1. Westislander

    While not specifically about politics, in the last couple of months, advertising has increased and inserts have drastically dropped in relevance and quality. I can accept some advertising but the crude cut ins, sometimes mid-sentence with low grade product and service promos have made me consider other platforms. I hope this is temporary teething problems, and not a downward spiral of Podbean.

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