iHeartPodcasts Drove a 45 Percent Lift in Incremental Sales for Mattress Firm’s Brick-And-Mortar Stores as Measured by Affinity Solutions

Affinity’s Transformative Consumer Purchase Lift Measurement Validates the Incremental Impact of iHeartMedia & Mattress Firm Podcast Advertising Based on In-Store Transactions

NEW YORK, August 9, 2023 – iHeartMedia, the leading audio company in America and the No. 1 podcast publisher globally according to Podtrac, and Affinity Solutions (Affinity), the leading consumer purchase insights company, today announced the results of a pioneering measurement engagement using deterministic transaction data. The study gauged the incremental impact of Mattress Firm’s podcast marketing investments on brick-and-mortar sales.

Affinity’s Consumer Purchase Lift leveraged deterministic transaction data combined with a control and exposed methodology as the source of truth to remove dependance on proxy metrics like foot-traffic to forecast sales. The campaign featured a custom podcast called “Chasing Sleep,” created in partnership with Mattress Firm, the Spark Foundry Content team and iHeartMedia’s Ruby Studio. For its inaugural season, the teams brought together a mix of sleep advisors and everyday people to explore how everyone from astronauts to newscasters to ultramarathoners prioritize sleep to perform and live at their best. The podcast incorporated key brand messaging throughout, complemented with ad placements across the iHeartPodcasts network. iHeartMedia partnered with Affinity Solutions to measure sales outcomes over a three-month campaign period that was based on this custom audio content.

Mattress Firm’s investments on iHeartPodcasts lead to a 45 percent lift in incremental sales and achieved a 4X incremental return on ad spend (ROAS). The custom measurement study between iHeartMedia, Mattress Firm and Affinity confirmed, with a high level of confidence, the connectivity of podcast advertising to in-store sales. There is proof in the ability of podcasts to move the needle for brands, beyond online transactions.

“Over 100 million Americans listen to podcasts a month with 80 million Americans listening weekly, which is clear evidence this ‘emerging medium’ has now become a permanent, new part of all of our media consumption - giving brands access to new and engaging audiences,” said Brian Kaminsky, Chief Data Officer for iHeartMedia. “By partnering with Affinity to measure the impact of Mattress Firm’s digital audio advertising, particularly on their bottom line, we were able to demonstrate the power of the brand’s partnership with iHeart to drive sales and strong ROI. We also gained insights to optimize campaign performance that we are already applying.”

“Podcasts are the perfect medium for combining Mattress Firm’s passion for sleep with the power of storytelling,” said Sam Bennett, SVP of Marketing at Mattress Firm. “The results of this study unequivocally revealed that an investment in branded content yields strong results. As we continue to invest in content, we remain focused on harnessing the power of podcasts to empower, educate, and inspire our valued audience – while simultaneously driving business results.”

“It’s all about the power of proof. Brands like Mattress Firm partner with companies like iHeartMedia with the expectation of strong ROI,” said Damian Garbaccio, Chief Business & Marketing Officer for Affinity Solutions. “Until now, success was based on proxy metrics like reach, frequency, and foot traffic. By using purchase data like Affinity’s, we can finally go beyond proxies to provide definitive proof of “outcomes” from paid media – purchases.”

Outside of measuring impact, by tapping into the power of Consumer Purchase Lift measurement, brands can optimize future media executions to drive superior campaign performance and business growth on future investments.

For more information about Affinity Solutions' Consumer Purchase Lift, please visit www.affinity.solutions.

For more information about iHeartPodcasts, please visit iheartmedia.com/podcasts.

About Affinity Solutions

Affinity Solutions (Affinity) is the leading consumer purchase insights company. We provide a comprehensive view of U.S. consumer spending, across and between brands, via exclusive access to fully permissioned data from over 140 million debit and credit cards. This data is transformed into actionable insights for marketers, consultancies, and financial services companies to drive market share and revenue growth. Affinity powers CometTM, a powerful data-led intelligence platform that enables marketers to effortlessly plan, activate, and measure media to purchase-based outcomes. To learn more about Affinity Solutions visit www.affinity.solutions.

About Mattress Firm

Mattress Firm, the nation's largest omni-channel mattress specialty retailer, has been helping solve America's sleep problems for more than 90 years through our family of brands. Every one of our more than 6,500 passionate Sleep Experts are driven by a common purpose: to change people's lives through better sleep. Whether browsing online or in one of our 2,300+ stores, our highly trained team provides personalized service and advice to help customers choose the right mattress and bedding products based on their unique needs. Our expertly curated selection of products include leading brands such as Beautyrest®, Nectar®, Sealy®, Serta®, Simmons®, Sleepy's® Stearns & Foster®, Tempur-Pedic®, Tuft & Needle®, tulo®, and Purple®. Mattress Firm supports local and national charities through product and monetary donations and offers employee volunteering opportunities to serve their communities. No matter the time of night, Mattress Firm wants to help people get the sleep they deserve. Our Sleep.com website provides expert advice and helps people explore the health benefits of quality sleep, and the Sleep.com app provides free sleep tracking and personalized insights to improve sleep.

About Spark Foundry
Spark Foundry is a global media agency brand within Publicis Media, a key division of Publicis Groupe [Euronext Paris FR0000130577, CAC 40]. Spark Foundry harnesses a startup spirit with a powerhouse soul by combining an entrepreneurial, innovative business approach with the resources, capabilities, and marketplace reach of Publicis Media, Ad Age’s 2023 “Agency Network of the Year.” The agency leverages best-in-class industry talent in over 50 countries across the world, including the USA, UK, MENA, Poland, Australia, and China. Spark Foundry has received numerous industry accolades, including Ad Age's 2022 "Media Agency of the Year" and Adweek's 2022 "U.S. Media Agency of the Year."

About iHeartMedia, Inc.

iHeartMedia (NASDAQ: IHRT) is the number one audio company in the United States, reaching nine out of 10 Americans every month. It consists of three business groups.

With its quarter of a billion monthly listeners, the iHeartMedia Multiplatform Group has a greater reach than any other media company in the U.S. Its leadership position in audio extends across multiple platforms, including more than 860 live broadcast stations in over 160 markets nationwide; its National Sales organization; and the company’s live and virtual events business. It also includes Premiere Networks, the industry’s largest Networks business, with its Total Traffic and Weather Network (TTWN); and BIN: Black Information Network, the first and only 24/7 national and local all news audio service for the Black community. iHeartMedia also leads the audio industry in analytics, targeting and attribution for its marketing partners with its SmartAudio suite of data targeting and attribution products using data from its massive consumer base.

The iHeartMedia Digital Audio Group includes the company’s fast-growing podcasting business -- iHeartMedia is the number one podcast publisher in downloads, unique listeners, revenue and earnings -- as well as its industry-leading iHeartRadio digital service, available across more than 500 platforms and 2,000 devices; the company’s digital sites, newsletters, digital services and programs; its digital advertising technology companies; and its audio industry-leading social media footprint.

The company’s Audio & Media Services reportable segment includes Katz Media Group, the nation’s largest media representation company, and RCS, the world's leading provider of broadcast and webcast software.

Visit iHeartMedia.com for more company information.