Fancasts: The Best Bang for Your Ad Bucks?

woman promoting a camera productBenefiting a niche audience

Fancasts, podcasts dedicated to a very specific topic in entertainment, sports or pop culture, generally have a wildly loyal and engaged listening audience.

After all, a coworker might not want to hear about the ways that Star Wars is better than Star Trek (I said what I said!), but there are a lot of people out there who do. For advertisers in today’s segmented media market, this type of consistent engagement is hard to find anywhere else.

 Listen to the listeners 

There are a variety of ways that advertisers can capitalize on these audiences. First, make sure the product being marketed fits the very specific audience. Would someone who’s dedicated his or her time to learning Klingon use your product? If you don’t know what Klingon is, then that’s probably an easy ‘no.’ But if you target your message to the specific fancast audience, it’s more likely to be heard and acted upon by those listeners, than listeners in other media outlets.

Plant your flag

These dedicated listening audiences are interested in every aspect of these shows or topics. They love the subject matter of the fancast and often that love resonates with the network that airs this content, or other shows associated tangentially associated with this material. If your brand sponsors one of these fancasts outright, it can signal your support for the entertainment industry as a whole. Your brand will seem as invested in the furtherance of film, television or sports, as much as the fancast is. A rising tide lifts all sails!

One-on-one time 

Another benefit to fancasts is the intimate nature of the shows. There’s a more conversational and casual nature to this content. The conversations usually focus on analysis, hypothesizing and fun banter. Having host-read ads in this format feels less jarring and more integral than prerecorded ads. It’s also likely that the host is going to be more legitimately connected to your product, leading to more authentic ad delivery.

An authentic ad

In a way, fancasts do the demographic work for advertisers simply by being authentic. Passionate fans don’t listen to someone they don’t trust or don’t believe aligns with their view of the stories they love. This authenticity creates a bond between the hosts and the listener; the listener often feels like the host is their friend. Ads delivered from a trusted host can feel more like a personal recommendation rather than a paid ad.

On repeat

Finally, these audiences are more likely to listen to every episode because of their investment in the original content. They are hungry for more information on these shows. They’ll be less likely to speed through host-read ads, not wanting to miss any moment of the conversation.

Until next time …

There is more content being produced than ever before because of technology, the type of stories being told and audience demand. With that expansion into different mediums and networks, fan-created materials show no signs of stopping. With fancasts being relatively inexpensive to produce, and fans continuing to want to be part of these worlds, the opportunity for advertisers to get their products in front of engaged audiences will only keep growing.