If you haven’t heard, which you probably haven’t because the release was on the DL (down low), Spotify just launched the beta version of “Spotify Ad Studio”. This inclusive ad platform (build a campaign with a minimum $250 budget)—similar to Facebook or Pinterest’s ad managers—is a complete 180 from Spotify’s original (and incredibly inclusive with its $25,000 minimum) ad platform.
For digital marketing agencies like Marketing Supply Co., this is likely the best thing that has come out of 2017 (we realize that’s not too hard to do in light of current events, regardless). Spotify already plays a major role providing the background music for our office, but now you can read why we think Ad Studio is a game changer for startup marketing strategies.
Based on first impressions, Ad Studio is fairly similar to Facebook Ad Manager. This is good news for any agency who uses Facebook Ad Manager religiously like we do. We’re hoping that this will equate to a seamless transition into creating audio ads for our clients. To be perfectly honest, when we heard the words “audio ads”, our minds immediately went to purchasing a mic, soundproofing material, etc., but just like Spotify makes your morning commute a breeze, audio ads are much easier done than said.
According to Spotify, using Ad Studio is as easy as telling Spotify how your ad should sound, and they’ll take it from there—but you also have the option to upload your own audio ad. Here are the steps, directly from Spotify.
Step 1: Create your ad (or upload your own): Give Spotify a script, and they’ll give your ad a voice. Seriously—they’ll record a voiceover and mix the music.
Step 2: Pick your audience: Target based on age, gender, location, activity, and music taste. Select mobile, desktop or both so your ad reaches listeners in the right context. More on this further down.
Step 3: Customize your campaign: You’ve got the keys. Just set your budget and campaign dates, then sit back, relax, and see how listeners engage with your ad.
In our humble opinion, step 2 is where social advertising agencies can really step in. Agencies like Marketing Supply Co. will dive deep into research about your target audience to discover their music tastes and habits—we promise we won’t base our research on our own, kick-ass music taste.
Once you have your campaign set in motion the self-service ad platform allows you to forecast impression estimates based on your target audience, and track and manage all your campaign reporting.
If you are a startup, small business, or any business that focuses its advertising efforts exclusively online, audio ads are likely a foreign concept. Here’s why we think they’ll work. We are a digital agency, so we love online advertising as much as we do it, but because we know it so well, we know where it’s lacking. Social media advertising tends to be pretty visual, which is great, but visual ads can’t be everywhere—yet.
Radio ads and regular commercial spots may be old school, but no marketer can deny that the audio aspect of these traditional forms of advertising makes ads that much more engaging. Another way to think about it: the average person doesn’t have a screen in their shower, on their morning commute, or exercising outdoors, but they are probably listening to something. Whether it’s through headphones, an Amazon Alexa, or car speakers, audio ads go where visual ads can’t. Not to mention, Spotify has over 140 million listeners worldwide so the chances of you reaching your audience are pretty high.
We are music lovers. The only thing we talk about more than digital marketing is LCD Soundsystem’s “American Dream” album. We’re not alone in this though, millions of people every month tune into Spotify to listen to music that speaks to them. We believe—so does Spotify—that the music people listen to says a lot about them. I mean why would I listen to “Bodak Yellow” if I didn’t want to feel like an empowered woman? That being said, we see marketing your product/service to someone based on their listening habits as a can’t miss opportunity.
Nothing is perfect, except, of course, Fleetwood Mac’s “Rumours” album [Note: our CEO believes that Dr. Dre’s “The Chronic” album is also perfect]. There are a few areas that we think Ad Studio might fall short, starting with Spotify Premium:
Spotify Premium and Premium For Family customers make up a large chunk of Spotify’s network, this means that this group of potential consumers won’t be exposed to audio ads. Depending on your audience, this could be a major downside to audio ads.
Second, you can’t target by zip code or geo-radius, only by country, state, or designated market areas. So, while the minimum to create a campaign is low, audio ads may not be the best option for super local products.
Third, there is no way to know exactly which playlists, albums, etc. that the ad played on. This isn’t necessarily a major pitfall of Ad Studio, but definitely something to keep in mind.
Aside from having excellent taste in music, the MSC team is the perfect digital agency to partner with when it comes to marketing with Spotify. Not only are we one of the few companies that are already off the waitlist (we can get your campaigns rolling like a stone asap), but we also have the resources and experts that are willing and able to conduct in-depth audience research to help ensure that your ads are being put in the ears of the right people. Ready to stop your consumers in their tracks? Contact us today!