Podcasting is one of the newest digital marketing tools available on the market, especially when compared to other more traditional channels like social media. Nevertheless, its potential to build brand image, establish credibility, and ultimately grow a business is immense.

This is shown by the growth in podcast revenue in recent years. The latest statistics show that in 2019, podcasting revenue in the US totaled $708.1 million. To put things in perspective, this figure represents a 47.8 percent increase from the podcast ad revenue generated in 2018.

And to further highlight the tremendous growth, between 2015 and 2019, US podcast ad revenue increased nearly seven-fold from $106.7 million. This marks an average annual growth rate of 61.51 percent.

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US Podcasting Revenue Distribution

A deeper look at the podcast revenue distribution in the US shows that in 2019, the most popular advertising campaigns run on podcasts are direct response ads. In fact, more than half (54 percent) of the revenue came from these ads, which are designed with a clear call-to-action to trigger a specific response from listeners. 

This is followed by ads to boost brand awareness, which accounted for 42 percent of the total podcasting revenue share. The market share of brand awareness ads has been steadily increasing. In 2016, it was responsible for 25.4 percent of the total podcast revenue, before rising to 29.2 percent in 2017 and then further to 38 percent in 2018.

Together, these top two ad formats make up a whopping 96 percent of the US’s podcast ad revenue in 2019. The remaining four percent come from branded content (three percent) and product placement (one percent). 

Podcasts’ Increasing Popularity Driving Podcast Revenue

One of the biggest drivers behind the increasing podcast revenue in the US is its growing user base. In 2020, 55 percent of US consumers say they listen to podcasts. This is a four percentage point increase from the 51 percent in 2019.

In fact, podcasts have become increasingly popular in recent years. Apart from a slight dip in 2013, the number of podcast listeners in the US has been steadily increasing since 2006. From 2006 to 2020, the number of consumers listening to podcasts has risen by 12.59 percent per year on average.

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