Presented by Dolby February 2021


Audio is a powerful way to reach customers, and doing it right can increase connection, personalization, and productivity. Learn how branded audio content can help create engaging online experiences in the new normal and beyond in this VB Live event.


Audio is having a moment, thanks in part to the pandemic. At home most, if not all of the day, consumer consumption habits are unexpectedly switching up dramatically, with audio content and listenership rapidly on the rise, and engagement surging. To stay connected and informed, those sheltering at home are spending their days kept company by podcasts and music.

It’s a hands-free medium that can move with them throughout their day, listened to anywhere and anytime. In a crowded content landscape, the promise of audio is a powerful one. It expands the reach of your marketing significantly, attracting listeners who simply prefer audio content, or who can’t use other forms of content.

Portable and versatile, audio offers brands a unique way to cut through the visual clutter and increase personalization, convenience, and loyalty with meaningful content. And consumers are very willing to listen up.

According to Nielsen, four out of ten households have more than one smart speaker, and in a typical week, 90% use it for music, while 68% are listening to news. In the last month, 37% have listened to a podcast in the last month, 24% listen weekly, and 16 million people in the U.S. are avid fans.

That’s because audio grabs you. Neurological studies have shown how powerful audio is, engaging a storm of neural networks in the brain, including those that control motor actions, emotions, and creativity. Adding a human voice to your brand adds a layer of emotion that engages your audience more deeply, in a more sensory way.

More than any of your other content, to make branded audio content work as an integral part of your full brand identity, you need to understand your target audience, and the way they want to feel when they think about your brand, the mood you want to evoke, the kind of message you want to send — and it requires knowing how to create a rich and seamless audio experience wherever a consumer encounters your brand.

Here are just a few formats and channels branded audio content can include — and what you should be considering to integrate into your marketing mix:

Podcasts, both sponsored and branded. Creating a branded podcast gives you an opportunity to tell your company’s story, give insight into what you do, and show your audience who you are and what your company stands for. Like a blog, podcasts should offer educational, thought leadership-style content for listeners searching for information surrounding your business’s area of expertise. It can include interviews with experts from your company as well as leaders in your field — or you can repurpose existing content from your blog, turning it into a spoken word performance.

Audiograms. Essentially, an audiogram is a soundbite. It’s a way to concisely impart information, or promote something quickly. They can be pithy audio moments layered over still images — such as a seasonal message from your company’s CEO, for instance, and unlike advertisements, they aren’t paid promotional spots, and don’t necessarily require a call to action. They can be shared on social platforms like Instagram, where users tend to browse wearing headphones.

Clubhouse. Brands are starting to dip their toes into the Clubhouse waters. With over 6 million registered users as of February and a ton of celebrity buzz, the app is taking off. Rooms in the Clubhouse are home to live audio conversations that users can listen to or participate in; you can find yourself listening to discussions between reporters, celebrities, scientists, artists, and more. The immediate nature of these live conversations makes them powerfully engaging, and brands are just starting to explore the possibilities.

Facebook Live. Streaming an audio broadcast on Facebook Live — for instance, showing viewers a podcast recording session — is a great way to get on your audience’s news feed. It’s also a great way to solicit engagement, allowing them to comment in real time, provide feedback, and ask questions from your guests.

Making existing content accessible. Adapting your visual and written content into audio makes it available to audience members who are vision-impaired, which is table stakes in 2021. It also makes your content more portable, the way audiobooks let readers take their books on the road. It can also bring energy and emotion to your content, engaging an audience in a way the written word cannot.

Audio advertisements. 49% of avid podcast fans report that advertising on a podcast is the best way for a brand to reach them — and 54% said they’re more likely to purchase a product they heard about on a podcast. You can find this kind of ad space on radio programs and streaming services. It’s an opportunity to find a compelling way to capture audience attention quickly, and to create an audio brand for yourself.

It’s important to ensure these on-demand audio experiences should have the same clear audio quality as live interaction. Consumers now expect this, and when audio is sub-par, they can get frustrated and abandon. However, many application developers are not audio experts. And historically, great audio required an audio engineer, and the right software, and a lot of time.

But there are new ways to deliver great audio, whether that’s on a communication platform or with online content. New cloud-based API solutions can improve audio quality with just a few lines of code, allowing for background noise reduction, loudness adjustment, and improved dynamics and equalization, and a consistent quality control process.

To learn more about the importance of branded audio content across online experiences, how to develop powerful audio branding, how audio can help you connect with your users, plus the tools that can help you improve your audio and extract actionable data, don’t miss this VB Live event.