Campaign Fulfillment Guides

What are the different Ad Types sold in Gumball?

Last updated 2/21/2024

Ad operations is one of the most crucial functions for any podcast supported by advertising. Every ad purchased on a podcast comes with a set of expectations such as campaign start date, ad position, delivery method, and targeting criteria to name a few. As podcast technology advances, there are several tools available to advertisers to help verify if the ad they purchased is being delivered as expected.

Our team has recently partnered with industry leaders to establish a set of standard terminology to align expectations between creators and advertisers and we’ve since updated Gumball to match this terminology. Below is an outline of what ad types Gumball supports, their corresponding definitions, standard flight details, and tracking expectations. For most creators on our platform, nothing will change as far as how you deliver your ads, we’re now just providing more clarity and detail for all parties involved.

Ad Type Taxonomy

[Ad Creative Length] [Media Type] [Ad Position] - [Impressions] [Delivery Technology] - [Targeting] - [Flight Window]

Examples

  • 1:00 Audio Preroll - 100,000 Dynamic Impressions - Run of Show - 7 days
  • 1:00 Audio Preroll - 100,000 Dynamic Impressions - Episode - 7 days
  • 1:00 Audio Midroll - 25,000 Embedded Impressions - Episode - 30 days
  • 1:00 Video Preroll - 50,000 Integrated Impressions - Episode - 12 months
  • 1:00 Simulcast Midroll
    • 250,000 Dynamic Audio Impressions - Run of Show - 7 days
    • 50,000 Integrated Video Impressions - Episode - 12 months

Integrated Ad

Definition : An Integrated Ad is a pre-recorded ad that is included in the episode when uploaded to a podcast hosting platform. Everyone who listens to an episode will hear the same ad as there is no ad decisioning involved via DAI. This ad type is sometimes referred to as “Baked-In” but as an industry, we’ve decided it best to phase this term out.

Gumball’s Application : When an ad is listed on Gumball as “Integrated” our expectation is that it will be integrated into the episode file for a minimum of 12 months. We use Gumshoe data to determine a 30-day impression target for the ad itself, while the true value of the ad is in its lifetime duration in the episode file for at least 12 months. This type of ad is tracked via the Gumshoe Prefix, which is applied to your RSS Feed one-time and automatically tracked via YouTube, if applicable.

Ad Parameters:

  • Targeting: Episode
  • Impression Goal: 30-Day Average
  • Delivery Method: Baked-In
  • Flight Length: 12 Months
  • Tracking: Gumbshoe Prefix and/or YouTube API
  • Media Type: Audio or Video

Embedded Ad

Definition : An Embedded Ad is a pre-recorded ad that targets a single episode via Dynamic Ad Insertion for a determined amount of time (or agreed upon impression goal) before being removed. The ad campaign must be active and target the episode the moment the episode is published.

Gumball’s Application : When an ad is listed on Gumball as “Embedded” our expectation is that it will target a single episode via DAI the moment it’s published. The campaign flight should then run for the contracted impression target within 30 days. This target is based on Gumshoe data collected on your show for a minimum of five weeks. This type of ad is tracked via a unique Gumshoe Pixel, which you must add to the campaign flight in your ad server. Campaigns missing the tracking pixels required are liable to provide a makegood.

Ad Parameters:

  • Targeting: Episode
  • Impression Goal: 30-Day Average
  • Delivery Method: DAI
  • Flight Length: 30-Days
  • Tracking: Gumbshoe Pixel
  • Media Type: Audio

Dynamic Ad

Definition : A Dynamic Ad is a pre-recorded that has multiple targeting options, including Run of Show and Run of Network. This ad is served on an impression basis via an ad server at the moment a listener requests an episode file for download.

Gumball’s Application : When we sell Dynamic Ads on Gumball we are typically selling across a single show’s full episode catalog for seven days. This campaign should start the moment a new episode is published so the majority of the impressions are earned from the most recent episode in the catalog. In some cases, with approval from Gumball staff, we can support a 30-day flight (this would require a frequency cap of 3 impressions per listener per week). This type of ad is tracked via a unique Gumshoe Pixel, which you must add to the campaign flight in your ad server. Campaigns missing the tracking pixels required are liable to provide a makegood.

Ad Parameters:

  • Targeting: Run of Show; Run of Network
  • Impression Goal: 7-Days or 30-Day Averages
  • Delivery Method: Dai
  • Flight Length: 7-Days or 30-Days
  • Tracking: Gumbshoe Pixel
  • Media Type: Audio

Simulcast Show

Definition : A Simulcast Show is a podcast that airs both audio (via RSS) and video (via YouTube) simultaneously, meaning the content is one-to-one on both platforms.

Gumball’s Application : Over 60% of Gumball’s inventory includes a video component. For such shows, a YouTube ad will always be considered an Integrated Ad. Creators have the option to run either Integrated, Embedded, or Dynamic Ads on Audio. Ideally, Simulcast Shows on Gumball run either Integrated Audio and Video Ads, or Embedded Audio and Integrated Video. Please consult with a Gumball rep to confirm which is best for your show.

Ad Taxonomy (most common) :

  • Targeting: Episode
  • Impression Goal: 30-Day Average
  • Delivery Method: Baked-In and DAI
  • Flight Length: 30-Days
  • Tracking: Gumbshoe Pixel and YouTube API
  • Media Type: Audio and Video

# # # #

If the definitions above do not coincide with how your show is currently being sold on Gumball, please reach out to your Gumball rep or partnerships@gumball.fm to update your listing accordingly.

How do I implement a Gumshoe Pixel?

Last updated 7/20/2023

Gumshoe will generate a unique pixel URL for each ad spot for dynamically sold ads. This pixel is located at the bottom of each Script page in Gumball.

All dynamically sold audio podcasts on Gumball must have the Gumshoe Pixel installed to monitor and track the campaign delivery for each individual ad spot. In many cases, you may be asked to implement multiple pixels from different vendors at the same time. In the event your hosting platform only accepts one pixel per campaign, you will be instructed by Gumball staff on which pixel to implement based on the brand’s preference.

Adding pixels to your hosting platform’s ad server can be complicated and it’s possible to break your podcast temporarily if implemented incorrectly. If you have any hesitancy or questions on how to do it, please reach out to help@gumball.fm .

How do I implement the Gumshoe prefix?

Last updated 8/16/2023

Gumshoe generates a unique prefix URL for every audio podcast on Gumball. Prefixes are typically only added once and remain on your show for as long as you are on Gumball. You can locate your show’s unique prefix under your show’s specific Settings page and scroll down to the “Gumshoe Tracking” section.

All audio podcasts on Gumball must have the Gumshoe Prefix installed to monitor and track a podcast’s audience size and campaign delivery for embedded ads. In many cases, you may be asked to implement multiple prefixes from different vendors at the same time. Specific instructions for implementing the Gumshoe Prefix will be tailored to your show via your show’s Settings page.

Adding prefixes can be complicated and it’s possible to break your podcast temporarily if implemented incorrectly. If you have any hesitancy or questions on how to do it, please reach out to help@gumball.fm .

Why do I have to provide a makegood?

Last updated 6/16/2023

A makegood is an ad spot to compensate for a purchased spot that failed to meet contractual requirements. It can be one ad spot or several, depending on the severity of the issue(s). Gumball thoroughly reviews all makegood requests to confirm the request is warranted. In the event it is, we will communicate to you what when wrong, how to correct it, and confirm when the scheduled makegood will run.

Payment will not be disbursed on ads that do not meet the contractual requirements until the makegood is aired, following our standard payment terms.

Creators who consistently require makegoods tend to build a negative reputation among buyers, so it’s critical to get your ad reads right and become known to buyers as a reliable partner.

Here are some of the most common reasons our team receives for makegood requests:

  • Mispronouncing the brand’s name, product(s), or keywords
  • Not reading the minimum number of required talking points
  • Not including personal experience or a personal endorsement when specified in the Creator Brief
  • Not placing the ad in the contracted spot (pre-roll or mid-rolll) as specified in the Creator Brief
  • Not meeting the minimum ad duration (most spots are 60 seconds long)
  • Not reading ad copy verbatim that’s highlighted as mandatory
  • Saying the incorrect Call to Action
  • Saying the incorrect Promo Code and/or Vanity URL
  • [Video] Brand URL is not clickable in the comments section or description of a video
  • [Video] Host is not onscreen during the video integration

To avoid receiving makegood requests, please review the following articles:

Have any questions? Feel free to reach out to our team at help@gumball.fm.

How to Block Ad Categories and Brands in Google AdSense

Last updated 4/27/2023

As mentioned in our article outlining requirements for video integrations, you may be asked to set up competitive ad separation in AdSense. What is Competitive Ad Separation? This is essentially ensuring no competitive brands to your primary sponsor run in your videos via Google AdSense. These exclusions should remain active for 30 days from any given integration's Go-Live Date.

Gumball will clearly communicate in advance when this is expected. Here are the steps you will need to follow in order to fulfill this requirement.

  1. Log into your Google AdSense account, which is different from YouTube Studio.
  2. Locate "AdSense for YouTube" in your account and expand both Brand Safety and YouTube Host dropdowns in the left sidebar: Click on Blocking Controls .
  3. If Gumball provides specific competitive brand URLs, click "Manage Advertiser URLs" — here you can paste those URLs and save them.
  4. If Gumball provides general categories to block, click "Manage General categories" — here you'll find a list of general ad categories; toggle the communicated category from Allowed to Disallowed.
  5. After 30 days from the integration's Go-Live Date, you may revert the brands and/or categories previously blocked and re-allow those to be monetized in Google AdSense.

You may also review this support article from Google that describes this process.

Have any questions? Feel free to reach out to our team at help@gumball.fm.

How do I update my inventory schedule?

Last updated 7/20/2023

Advertisers love using Gumball because it provides real-time inventory availability on the shows we sell. In the event your future inventory schedule changes — whether you’re taking a week off, or if you’ve sold a spot off our platform — we ask that all creators update their inventory schedule to accurately reflect their future availability. Please plan to make these updates on a monthly basis, or as changes occur.

To update your inventory schedule, locate Open Episode Editor in your show settings. From there, you have the following options to make bulk changes to your inventory:

  1. Change the release schedule (e.g., changing the frequency and/or publishing day your content is published)
  2. Add one-off episodes or videos that you would like to sell ads on
  3. Blackout specific ad spots by checking each individual ad spot you would like to remove
  4. Delete future episodes or videos from your schedule

After you have inputted your changes please clarify any Ad Categories that should be excluded to avoid category conflicts and provide a short reason for your changes. Finally, click Save Changes to confirm changes.

Have any questions? Feel free to reach out to our team at help@gumball.fm.

Instructions for Delivering Feed Drops

Last updated 11/18/2022

What is a feed drop?

A feed drop is an advertisement for another podcast that is published to your RSS feed as an episode. It requires a host-read intro followed by a pre-recorded trailer, clip, or full episode provided by the podcast being promoted. It may also include title and description requirements provided by the podcast being promoted.

When are feed drops booked?

Feed drops are booked off schedule (not when a standard episode is set to be released). They live in the RSS feed as a stand-alone audio file, usually with a brief introduction from the host of the show.

How do I know if my show has booked a feed drop?

If a feed drop is booked on your show, you will get a notification in your Gumball dashboard. A member of our client services team will reach out to you with details regarding the requirements for the feed drop.

What do I need to do as a host?

Hosts will typically need to record the host-read intro to the feed drop according to the talking points provided by the podcast being promoted.

What do I need to do as a producer?

Producers will need to quality check the host-read intro as well as edit it together with the pre-recorded trailer, clip, or full episode provided by the podcast being promoted. Producers will then upload the feed drop as a new episode, following their standard upload process for a new episode and any additional instructions provided by the podcast being promoted. As a reminder, even if your show dynamically inserts ads, a feed drop is 1 file that includes the intro embedded into the full episode.

Have any questions? Feel free to reach out to our team at help@gumball.fm.

Instructions for Video Integrations On YouTube

Last updated 6/8/2023

YouTube is one of the top destinations of media consumption and increasingly so as podcasters flock to this platform to maximize their reach. As creators capture their fans’ attention on YouTube, we want to standardize what’s expected for video integrations sold by Gumball. These guidelines have been informed by many conversations with our ad partners and will be required for all shows on Gumball starting January 1, 2023.

Requirement #1 – Host Must Be On-Screen

Hosts must be on-screen when delivering a video integration. Using a static image with a host voice-over will not be accepted and will result in either a makegood request or cancellation.

Requirement #2 – Sponsor's Logo and Product On-Screen

The sponsor's logo and product must be featured during the video integration. Gumball will be sure to provide the product and key art from the brand in advance so your team can meet this standard.

Requirement #3 – Prominent Placement of Brand URL

Video integrations should include the brand's requested URL and call-to-action as a pinned comment. In some cases, a brand may ask for their URL inserted above the fold in the video's description (i.e., before "Show More"). Please make sure the link is clickable by including "https://" in front of the brand's domain (e.g., https://gumball.fm).

Requirement #4 – Block Competitive Ad Categories in AdSense

To ensure competitive ad separation, Gumball will provide a specific ad category and/or list of brands that must be excluded within Google AdSense for a minimum of 30 days from an integration's go-live date (here are instructions for how to block general categories in AdSense).

There are so many great examples out there on how to deliver a creative, fun, and effective campaign through video. We can’t wait to see more great examples from you! If you have any questions about these requirements, please contact us at help@gumball.fm .

How to Read Ad Copy

Last updated 3/30/2023

Ad Copy/Talking Points are the notes advertisers upload to guide creators in recording an ad. They can either be formatted as a script to be read verbatim, or as bulleted talking points which give a loose guide on what hosts should touch on in their read.

When you’re notified that an advertiser has uploaded copy, check it out! Your first time reading over the copy should not be when you’re sitting down to record your ad. Look it over and make sure you understand the requirements and don’t have any additional questions. If you do, contact us!

Things you should keep an eye out for in ad copy include:

  • Mandatory Talking Points: These are often highlighted, bold, or red. Check all the notes in your copy to see how they indicate these required lines. It can change advertiser to advertiser. It might just be mandatory that they’re mentioned, but sometimes they may need to be read verbatim. This is often the case for any disclaimers or CTAs (see below).
  • Personal Experience Requirements: Host-read ads often require a personal endorsement. Make sure you understand the requirements of this section of your read before you start. Almost all brands that require this will send over samples/accounts/etc. to try out their product. If you haven’t received yours or feel unable to make this endorsement, contact us!
  • Call To Action or “CTA”: This is the section with your special offer! It’s often meant to be read verbatim, so make sure you know what your promo code or vanity ur l is before starting your read. You can find these in the boxes at the top of your script page and sometimes within the copy itself. This is the number one place people make mistakes that are often cause for a Makegood, and in turn it’s the easiest mistake to avoid if you’re prepared ahead of time. When recording, it’s also good practice to read the offer twice through, spelling out any urls or codes that could be confusing to your listeners.
  • Additional notes: Sometimes the script page or your copy document may include additional notes. These vary widely and can include supplemental documents with more info about the products, words/phrases to avoid in your read, notes about the tone of the read, and more. Make sure to review all of these notes before you record.
  • Additional Deliverables:
    • YouTube and Simulcast
      • Creators are required to include a pinned comment on the video that includes the advertiser’s ad. Our AdOps team will provide the text that needs to be included in the pinned comment 1 week before the drop date.
      • Creators are required to include a logo to display on-screen during the ad read. Our AdOps team will provide the text that needs to be included in the pinned comment 1 week before the drop date.
    • Podcast -Dynamic Audio Ads
      • Creators are required to implement a Gumshoe pixel for each ad. Our AdOps team will provide the required pixel that needs to be implemented 1 week before the drop date.
      • Creators may also be required to implement a third party pixel (Podsights and Chartable are common third party attribution providers). Our AdOps team will provide the required pixel that needs to be implemented 1 week before the drop date.
    • Podcast - Embedded Audio Ads
      • Creators are required to implement our Gumshoe prefix when onboarding to Gumball. Our Creator Partnerships team will assist in ensuring this step is completed.
      • Creators may also be required to implement a third party prefix (Podsights and Chartable are common third party attribution providers). Our AdOps team will provide the required prefix that needs to be implemented 1 week before the drop date.

Check out some tips for recording a good ad!

Tips for Producing A Successful Ad

Last updated 7/20/2023

Here are some general tips our creators and producers have found helpful to remember while recording their ads:

  • Make sure you’re following the guidelines for the length of an ad. If Gumball says the ad should be 1:00 minute , make sure it isn’t under as this can be cause for a makegood . If it goes over, that’s totally fine, but in general we recommend ad reads stay under 3 minutes long.
  • Record a unique spot for each ad. Unless otherwise notified, you are required to record a new ad read for each spot on your calendar, even if copy is identical across multiple ads. When recording multiple ads with the same copy, use this opportunity to rotate in talking points you didn't use previously, or give an update on your personal experience.
  • Maintain a professional tone. Your tone really helps sell the ad to your audience & the brand. Advertisers listen to every read, so make sure to avoid disparaging, sarcastic, or uninterested tones to steer clear of negative feedback or potential makegoods.
  • Remind your audience that this is how they can show support for the show. Sometimes a line like this is included in the CTA of the copy, but telling the audience that using your promo code or vanity URL helps support the show can help push conversions and make brands renew with your show.
  • Personal Experience: Many spots will require you to discuss your personal experience with the product. This is your opportunity to share your direct experiences using the product or services.
    • Haven’t received your product in time? Sometimes a company can be slow to deliver a product in time to test prior to recording an ad. In these cases, let us know! We can check in with the advertiser and determine a best course of action. One frequent solution is to talk about parts of the process you have experienced (ordering online and the website experience) or what you ordered/are excited to receive.
    • Any issues with the product? Sometimes s haring your personal experience can be tough. In these cases we encourage you to talk about other aspects of the product you may have enjoyed—for example maybe it came in cute packaging, or you found its shipping straight to your door very convenient. Here are some examples of positive aspects you can mention:
      • “I found [the app] very easy to use”
      • “I love that it shipped directly to my door”
      • “Their online quiz was very personalized”
      • “I loved how [the product] smelled”
      • “I like that [the product] shipped in recyclable packaging”
      • “[This product] made a great gift for a friend/family member”
  • Make sure you're following the guidelines for where the ad is placed in your episode. If Gumball says the ad is a pre-roll , make sure it falls within the first 5-10 minutes of your episode. If the ad is a mid-roll it should fall around the halfway point or between 40%-70% of your episode. If your ad is a post-roll, it should come within the last 5-10 minutes. Misplacement of ads is often cause for a makegood.
  • (Recommended) Don't have music playing in the background of your ad reads. We’ve gotten feedback from advertisers in the past who don’t like it when shows add a music backing track to the ad read. It makes the ad feel less integrated with the show and makes it easier for your audience to skip ahead past it. This is not a hard rule, but a best practice to follow.

How to Upload an Aircheck

Last updated 3/20/2023

What’s an aircheck? An aircheck is a clip of your ad read used to verify that the spot has been recorded and gone live in your episode as scheduled. Once uploaded, these clips are available for the advertiser to listen to and provide feedback on when necessary.

How do I produce an aircheck? Use your preferred editing software to pull this clip from your episode. W e recommended cutting the ad out with 10-20 seconds of episode content before and after the ad read, in order to give the advertiser some context as to where it falls in the episode. Do not upload full episodes.

Upload Ad: Use this button on your Dashboard to upload an aircheck as proof that your ad has gone live. Any audio file type can be uploaded and will be converted to .mp3. We ask that these airchecks are uploaded at the latest within 24 hours after the ad goes live, or the ad risks late payment or cancellation. Ads are not invoiced until airchecks have been uploaded.

Note that an aircheck only serves as proof that you've recorded & placed your ad in your episodes as contracted. Gumball is not a hosting platform and therefore does not do any ad insertion.

Now what? Now the advertiser has an opportunity to listen to your read and confirm that it met all the requirements. In cases where it does not, an advertiser may ask for a "makegood". Check out the FAQ to learn more about makegoods & how to avoid them.

How do I track the status of my payments?

Last updated 7/27/2023

Payments

The payments page is where you can track payments for each of your ads and get clarity as to which ads Gumball is waiting to collect on.

Unaired: Booked ads that haven't aired yet.

Waiting On Advertiser: We are waiting on the advertiser to deliver payment.

Paid/ Paid Out [Date]: Ads that have been paid out to you, with payment date specification.