It’s easy to forget Pandora was once the top dog of music streaming.
But since its launch in 2008, Spotify has amassed more than 345 million monthly active users across 95 countries—outpacing rivals like Apple Music and YouTube with a 35% share of the global audio streaming subscription market.
Advertising on Spotify has the potential to unlock countless opportunities for your business.
In this post, we’re breaking down everything you need to know about how to run Spotify ads and the benefits they’ll bring to your brand.
What We’ll Cover:
- Who Should Advertise on Spotify?
- Benefits of Spotify Advertising
- Spotify Ad Types
- How to Run Spotify Ads: A Step-by-Step Guide
Who Should Advertise on Spotify?
Although Spotify has a sizable, far-reaching audience with diverse demographics, brands who are looking to reach members under the age of 45 will find the most success on the platform.
These users are generally heavily engaged with podcasts and may be more likely to follow through on ad campaigns they’re listening to on their smartphones.
And when it comes to playlist targeting, advertising on Spotify will be particularly useful for the following business types:
- Workout apps—Tap into listeners enjoying workout playlists.
- Food-related products—Tap into listeners enjoying cooking playlists.
- Productivity and task management apps—Tap into listeners enjoying focus playlists.
Benefits of Spotify Advertising
Sure—Spotify may be a wildly popular music streaming service, but why should it be part of your digital strategy? With other platforms like Facebook and Google already stretching your marketing budget to the limit, how can you be sure that Spotify will drive results for your business?
Here are a few reasons why Spotify is one of the most effective advertising channels on the market today:
- Access to a large audience—245 million monthly active users, with 141 being free, ad-listening members.
- Reach customers wherever they are—51% of Spotify’s audience comes from mobile devices, which means that listeners can be at home, at work, or on the go, giving you the chance to connect with listeners when it matters most.
- Improve brand image—According to Spotify, “7/10 Spotify users say advertising on Spotify makes a brand seem relevant, young, genuine, smart, trustworthy, innovative, and reliable.”
- Higher engagement levels—The average listener will spend 148 minutes on Spotify each day, which is more time than that spent on Facebook, Twitter, and Snapchat combined.
- Lower competition—Since many brands aren’t actively advertising on Spotify, it’s easier to stand out and make an impression on potential customers.
- Numerous targeting options—With Spotify Ad Studio, you can easily narrow in on highly relevant audiences through general demographic targeting or—if you want to get more granular—listening behavior.
Spotify Ad Types
Spotify offers 30-second audio or video ads that can be viewed and heard on the app. These ads are served to Spotify Free users in between songs and commercial breaks on both desktop and mobile.
Here are a few of the different ad settings you can run:
- All Platforms: This means that your ad will reach your target demographic no matter what device they’re using. The ad will play in between songs whenever a user is active on the platform.
- Sponsored Sessions: Displaying on mobile and tablet only, sponsored sessions will play a 30-minute block of uninterrupted content when the user watches a full-length Spotify ad.
- Video Takeover: This ad strategy also displays on mobile and tablet only, but instead of just audio, users will get to watch a complete video that includes a clickable companion, allowing them to click over to your target URL.
- Overlay: The overlay ad is a fixed advertisement that displays when someone comes back to the Spotify app. This ad type doesn’t include any audio or video and is similar to a banner ad you would see on an app or website.
- Homepage Takeover: These ads only work on desktops and are considered standard display advertisements. You do have the option, however, to include interactive elements to make the ad more compelling.
- Leaderboard: Only available on desktop and the web player, you can display leaderboard ads on the Spotify leaderboard for 30 seconds.
- Sponsored Playlists: The sponsored playlist works on all platforms and allows you to reach more listeners by serving as a sponsor of Spotify. Whenever someone listens to the playlist, your ad will be the only one to display as they stream it.
How to Run Spotify Ads: A Step-by-Step Guide
Luckily, Spotify Ads Studio lets you run campaigns for as little as $250 and it only takes minutes to reach a worldwide audience.
Ready to learn how to run Spotify ads for your business?
Step 1: Set Up an Account
The first step is to create a Spotify Ad Studio account if you don’t have one already. You’ll enter standard details about yourself and your business. Once your account is created, you’ll be directed to a dashboard where you can get started creating your Spotify ad.
Step 2: Set Your Objective, Budget, and Schedule
Similar to setting up advertising campaigns on other social media platforms, you’ll need to name your campaign and choose what you’re promoting from the following list:
- A brand, product, or organization
- An artist’s music on Spotify
- A concert or artist merch
On the next page, you’ll select the type of ad format and platform you want. You can choose between audio or video, as well as the platform you want to display the ad. The platform will depend on the goal of your ad as podcast ads. Keep in mind—Streaming Ad Insertion is only available for brands who work directly with Spotify for Brands.
Once you’ve done that, you’ll need to choose the ad schedule for when you want the ad campaign to start, end, and the time of day you want to display it. You can also set your budget limit so that once you’ve reached it, the ad will automatically stop running. You can always come back and adjust your budget after you’ve added more targeting information, which we’ll discuss in the next step.
Step 3: Identify Your Target Audience
This step is critical to your campaign’s overall success. Spotify enables marketers to get hyper-specific in their targeting down to the postal code.
Here, you’ll choose your target audience based on their country, location, age, gender, music genre, and more. You can even target your audience based on their interests, which includes books, fitness, news, in-car listening, and travel. Plus, real-time context targeting enables you to reach people who listen to music that’s tailored to specific activities and moods.
Step 4: Create Your Ad
On the next page, you can officially start creating your ad. You have the option to upload a video, add an image, and include a call to action. Spotify will then show you what your ad will look like on both mobile and desktop.
Keep in mind that only one ad format can be selected for each ad set.
Here are the specs:
- Length: 30 seconds or less
- File types: WAV, MP3, OGG
- Max file size: 1 MB
- Audio: WAV – 16-bit 44.1 kHz MP3, at least 192 kbps RMS normalized to 14 dBFS Peak normalized to -0.2 dBFS
- Dimensions: At least 640 x 640 pixels
- File type: JPEG or PNG
- Max file size: 200 KB
Step 5: Monitor Your Ad’s Progress
Now, the only thing left to do is monitor your ad’s success. Spotify offers a ton of analytics in the back end to keep track of all the data, which you can use to determine how you’ll want to narrow down or broaden your audience over time. By seeing who is converting and who is not, you can then refine your ad accordingly.
At this point, Spotify’s growth cannot be ignored.
With its massive user base and seamless interface, the platform has paved the way for a whole new avenue of advertising, allowing brands of all sizes to reach their target audience anywhere, anytime.
And now that you know how to run Spotify ads, it’s time to take what you’ve learned and apply it to your next advertising campaign.