Despite improvements in podcast advertising that have made it easier to buy ads through programmatic channels, buyers are slow to adopt true programmatic podcast buying through a demand-side platform, according to buyers who spoke with Digiday.

There are a variety of reasons for this: host-read ads are still king in the medium, not all podcast networks or shows have inventory available to buy programmatically, and buyers often feel the need to vet the content to ensure contextual alignment when targeting specific audience segments or category verticals across a number of podcast networks.

Molly Schultz, svp of integrated investment at UM, said her team prefers to buy through a DSP because they can target a specific audience segment across networks. Because of this, buying ads through a DSP is also better for clients that have smaller budgets and can’t “commit to massive spends,” CMI’s Pappas said. Clients can test the podcast space with those smaller budgets going into DSPs to get their “feet wet with audio,” he said.

Read more on Digiday.