Feel the Story: Emotionally Immersive Storytelling – Advertising Week

By Jodie Huang, Manager, Insights, Mindshare

I went to this seminar from Wondery because audio is having a resurgence: smart speakers and podcasts are two of the fastest growing channels for brands to enter. And yes, I also went to this session because they worked with our NeuroLab team, which I helped with.

Our industry has many myths that are difficult to dispel, but new advances in technology, attribution and data analysis has allowed us better to understand how consumers truly think and feel. One such myth is that audio only content isn’t as emotionally intensive as visual-only or audiovisual content. But this panel and blog post would be very short if that was the case. The research finds that audio-only ads have a higher emotionally intensity than visual-only ads and 89% the intensity of audiovisual ads. This is especially relevant for podcasts as a form of storytelling. People experience the same story differently across the different mediums – podcasts can generate more emotional complexity and part of it is because podcasts create more empathy with listeners.

As a result, podcasting is particularly good at driving trust and authenticity—and brands that advertise on podcasts will reap those same attributes. Beyond busting myths, our NeuroLab research also helped figure out which ads were most optimal for audio and resonated best with audiences.

Even small changes like host-read vs producer-read ads can have significant effects on emotions and memory. Context is another important factor when choosing the spots, because the differences in how listeners react to stories versus interviews, subject matter of the podcasts, host personality, etc. can all affect how engaged listeners are. Thanks to the expertise of those running the NeuroLab, we were we able to figure all of these subtle but important nuances.