When it comes to podcast ads, it turns out that less does a whole lot better than more. A recent study from Ad Results Media (ARM) found that the ideal number of ads per ad break is 2 max. This goldilocks number allows listeners to really hear the ads and prevents them from tuning out, or even worse, skipping them entirely.
ARM conducted a 14-month study that looked over $80 million in ad spend to determine the perfect number of ads for each ad break. While 2 ads were just right, they found that ad breaks with 3-4 performed only about 12% worse. However, ad breaks with 5 or more ads completely tanked. Ad breaks with 5 or more ads performed 46% worse than those with 2 ad breaks.
Ad breaks packed with ads performed worse most likely due to listener fatigue. Listeners inundated with ads may feel overwhelmed and decide to skip ads altogether. Podcasters should be cognizant of the number of ad slots they have placed in their episodes to ensure the perfect balance of ads and content.
Of course, the number of ad breaks depends heavily on the length of your episodes. Podcasts with episodes 15-20 minutes or less should aim to have 1-2 ad breaks per episode. One Pre-Roll Insertion Point and one Post-Roll often do the trick!
Podcasts with longer episodes, 30 minutes or more, should try to have at least one Pre-Roll Insertion Point, one Mid-Roll Insertion Point, and one Post-Roll Insertion Point. If the podcast is quite long, 1.5 to 2 hours, then an extra Mid-Roll Insertion Point is totally okay to add. (But be sure to space them out properly!)
Striking the right balance might seem onerous, but sticking to the above suggestions will help you to maximize your revenue!