The advertising landscape is witnessing a seismic shift, and programmatic ad buying is emerging as a powerhouse in the industry. According to a recent survey conducted by Comscore’s programmatic targeting division, 62% of ad buyers anticipate a YoY increase in programmatic ad investment. Proximic by Comscore’s State of Programmatic Report for 2024 sheds light on the evolving dynamics, revealing that advertisers strategically balance programmatic and direct approaches based on the specific media channel.

The data reflects a notable surge in dollars allocated to programmatic media, attributed to the rise of programmatic-first media channels and advertisers’ growing appreciation for the efficiency and precision offered by programmatic advertising.

In a closely contested scenario, programmatic transactions are poised to surpass direct buying, particularly in the realm of audio and podcasts. The survey indicates that 30% of advertisers plan to conduct the majority of audio/podcast spending programmatically, outpacing the 25% opting for direct transactions. In contrast, 60% of advertisers envision the majority of their web & mobile display media transactions to be programmatic, while only 13% anticipate direct means.

Comscore highlights the ascending significance of audio/podcast channels, especially among younger audiences. While audio advertising is still maturing, it exhibits exceptional efficacy with younger generations. Despite not being perceived as the most effective channel for brand or performance marketing objectives compared to other media channels, audio and podcast advertising are gaining prominence, particularly for targeting younger demographics.

Citing eMarketer data, the report emphasizes that 66% of Generation Z actively listens to podcasts, signifying a remarkable 57% increase over the past five years. Moreover, Gen Z views the podcast medium as less toxic than social media, with 43% making product purchases influenced by podcast advertisements.

Key Takeaways

  • 62% of ad buyers are gearing up to boost their investments in programmatic ad buying.
  • Programmatic transactions are set to surpass direct buying in audio and podcasts in 2024, with 30% of advertisers planning to transact most of their audio/podcast spend programmatically.
  • This shift highlights the growing importance of audio advertising, especially for younger audiences, as 66% of Gen Z now tunes into podcasts.

The report also underscores the industry’s preparedness for impending challenges, revealing that nearly one-third of marketers are unprepared for cookie deprecation. Contextual targeting is anticipated to play a pivotal role, with a majority of marketers planning to maintain or intensify their reliance on this strategy. Additionally, there is a consensus among advertisers that artificial intelligence (AI) will revolutionize the programmatic landscape, challenging established norms in 2024.

As the industry gears up for a transformative year, marked by increased programmatic spend, a shift from linear TV budgets to Connected TV (CTV), and the ascendance of contextual targeting as a cookie replacement strategy, the role of audio advertising, especially in the podcast domain, is set to play a central and influential role. The adoption of artificial intelligence is poised to redefine industry standards, signaling a new era for advertisers in the dynamic landscape of 2024.

Download the report here