Gone are the days of bothersome, unselective and brash radio ads. Good advertising today is a dialogue with people. Spotify claims 36% of the global streaming market. Its active users have been forecasted to increase from 217 million to between 245 and 256 million by the end of 2019. Reaching 100 million-mark of premium users, the giant in streaming has even surpassed its number one competitor, Apple Music. Because of its colossal market share, Spotify Ads do pack a punch. Their programmatic audio advertising is a bona fide way to reach Gen X and beyond.

Audio ads are the ultimate way to reach just about anyone who owns headphones or a boom box. The average person to more than 5 hours of music per day. Bloomberg has reported that the millennials are the biggest audio generation, listening to music while doing just about anything from commuting to working or studying. Spotify audio ads enable brands to reach these targeted consumers who consume music like candy during screen-less moments of their day when visual ads cannot.

If you are deliberating whether Spotify Ads are a worthy marketing investment that will bring you good ROIs, this article will give you a full 101 on Spotify Ads in order for you to make that decision.

But if you prefer to watch a video instead, click here:


Why Choose Spotify Ads?

Think reach and relevancy. We know that there is no point in investing time and money on a campaign that will fall on deaf ears. Aside from the whopping market share statistics above, a study has proven that Spotify Ads are 25% more effective than normal ads. Here are 6 factors that make Spotify Ads a notch above when it comes to effective advertising.

A Vast Reach

Out of the current 217million users, 117 million are million freemium subscribers who get the ads. This number has been forecasted to continue in growth. Spotify is not just about its repository of music; it also features podcasts as well. Marketers and brands get a direct line of communication with these ad-supported listeners.

A Targeted Dialogue

Music is the shorthand of emotion, and with that, Spotify is able to collect demographic data on consumers’ moods, locations, and activities. For example, upbeat tracks are preferred for gym workouts. Spotify’s digital audio advertising is able to capture emotional engagement 15% better than competitor platforms. With such specific telegraphed data, the platform allows marketers to target a segmented audience in a timely and accurate way.

A Curated Plan

Spotify campaigns require a minimum of $250 for a campaign depending on your target segment. This means a cost of approximately $0.015 to $0.025 per ad served. Such low investments allow marketers to effectively do an entry market testing before applying a bigger budget for new campaigns.


A Selection of Media

It’s not just about digital audio ads. Spotify allows you to drive impact through various formats such as video and display as well. Here’s how it works.

  • Audio ads are served between songs with a clickable display on the consumer’s device.
  • Video ads can be served between songs or offered as a sponsored session of 30minutes ad-free play after watching your ad.
  • Image overlays are shown as a clickable ad when users return to the Spotify app for maximum impact. Visual ads can also be displayed via homepage takeover for 24 hours or through a sponsored playlist option.

An Understanding of Your Ad’s Impact

Insights are important in marketing strategy lest you be investing in the wrong channels. Spotify’s new advertising suite can help you to measure the impact of streams and listener growth. This is so you can better understand factors that contribute to stronger engagement and increased conversions.

A Platform Against Odds

With the evolution of audio ads come the uprising of tech geniuses who find ways to block Ads on Spotify. As of February this year, Spotify will suspend or terminate users who use or create tools to block ads. This guarantees that brands who run campaigns on the platform will get what their investments deserve when it comes to paid ads.

Spotify Ads versus Pandora Ads

Let’s talk about competitors. If you are a brand in search of new audio ad markets, your research will most likely land you with a couple of choices, Pandora being one. In the realm of audio streaming, both Spotify and Pandora dominate the market with similar functions, each offering unique capabilities to advertisers.

Here is a quick comparison chart on both platforms each individual’s capabilities and cost.


Bigger brands tend to prefer Spotify as they have bigger budgets and have a leeway budget to afford Spotify’s ad package. The price comes with a reward of a higher reach. However, if you are cash-strapped, Pandora’s flexibility on pricing might work in your favor. As you can see, there is no obvious victor on the subject of cost. It really depends on your brand’s budget and needs when it comes to choosing a platform. Spotify allows a more powerful reign of control on your ad’s creativity, is quick, effective and easy to process. Pandora, however, allows certain targeting that Spotify lacks such as consumers’ interests and occupation.

Your Spotify Audio Ad Strategy

The road to a successful audio ad is often paved with good intentions. The key to a successful campaign execution is often, however, strategic planning. Content isn’t king, it’s the kingdom! Bear in mind that 72% of millennials are on Spotify’s freemium account. It would be a good assumption to include them in the design of your content. Since Spotify Ads also does not allow zip code targeting, your target should also be relatively broad.

In addition, there are many considerations when creating an audio ad and a large part of it is dependent on your constraints. Such include your budget, production time-frame, campaign time-frame ad objectives and format. Your resources determine your creation process. Such include whether you might be able to outsource your ad’s script or narration to platforms or produce everything organically in-house. You can read more on how to build a successful digital audio ad with all your constraints considered here.

Spotify offers a maximum of 30 seconds of airtime with the formats WAV, MP3 and OGG. That said, here are a couple of quick tips for making an effective Spotify Ad.

Know your Target Audience

The same applies here as in all marketing plans. Building a persona of your target audience is an effective way to help you understand the demographics you are reaching for.  Your content should be skewed towards addressing your target audience personally. For instance, resonating with their likes and dislikes. This includes playing the same genre of background music in your ad as those that they might have on their playlists.

Craft Content that Sticks

The key is creating a memorable and clear message that sticks with your listener. Above all, get to the point at the very start and sell the benefits of your brand such as unique selling points (USPs) and promotions. In addition, make sure to point your listener in the right direction with a call-to-action. Ads with call-to-action are three times more effective than those without one. A great tip would be to incentivize your audience with the exclusivity of a promotional code to create a little push into a conversion.

Producing a Good Ad

The last thing you want is for your ad to become an annoying pain that resonates negatively with your listeners. Don’t try to jam too much into your ad. For a clear narration, Spotify recommends 55-75 words for a 30 seconds ad. Avoid adding annoying sound effects that can put off your audience and only use music if it complements your brand. When producing ensure that the voice-overs and music is balanced and avoid using multiple voice actors. If you are struggling with production, Spotify enables brands to create and manage audio ads through its very own sophisticated platform known as Spotify Ad Studio.


Audio Ad Creation with Spotify Ad Studio

If you are just breaking into the realm of audio ads, you probably have the impression that it comes with a hefty budget. Such include the likes of loaning sophisticated recording equipment for production. However, all is not lost with the ever-powerful Spotify Ad Studio, conceived to combat such obstacles.

Designed to help SMEs with producing and distributing audio ads, Spotify Ad Studio is free and easily accessible. The self-enabling platform enables brands to choose their target audience. This means specific targetting based on consumers’ activities and likes through the choices of their podcasts and playlists. Moreover, with a user-friendly multi-functional interface, it is possible to conduct small-scale testing through this platform before scaling up your campaign based on its impact. Let’s explore some of the features that can help to design a successful digital audio ad below.


Voiceover audio recordings are made available upon request through Spotify Ad Studio. Simply upload instructions and your script, specify your preferences on language, voice profile and background music and Spotify will create your voiceover within 24 to 48 hours. Make sure that the information you provide is for not more than 30 seconds of content. You can even specify if you want a male or female voice as well as their age group. Revisions can be made if you are dissatisfied with the voiceover.

Alternatively, if you want more reign of creativity and originality for your ad, outsourcing externally might be a good idea depending on your budget. You can choose to outsource partially for the writing of your script or hiring a voice actor, or go full-stack and produce the entire audio ad through an external specialist. Depending on your available resources, it is important to ensure that the ad is professionally done and ready to broadcast, lest your impact your brand image negatively.

Ad Creative

As mentioned before, Spotify allows advertising through different media such as images, videos, and audio. In many cases, you will be able to upload your own creative image that prompts a click for conversion. You will be able to do this via Spotify Ad Studio. Simply upload an image with the specifications of 640px x 640px for your digital audio ad. Ensure you link these images correctly to your landing page so you will be able to seamlessly track through your conversion rates for effective ROI reporting.

Targeted Distribution

Here’s where the magic of reaching the right audience comes into play. Choose the right demographics based on what your target audience is most likely to listen to. This can be anything from a study music playlist, a workout music playlist to a cooking podcast. Depending on what your brand sells, it is always good to acknowledge or address your specific audience through your ad for a more personable reach. Set your parameters through Spotify Ads Studio and have full control over who listens to your ads.

Reporting Metrics

If you are a marketer, odds are you know how important insights are to any campaign. Aside from helping you to identify if your campaign has been successful in conversions and ROI, reporting metrics can also help you to learn from mistakes and plan a more successful campaign in the future.

Spotify Ad Studio provides you with the number of impressions, the number of clicks and the click-through rate (CTR) for every campaign so you can analyze how your ads are doing with different combinations of audio and your image creative. Through this, you will be able to learn if your current ad campaign resonates with new or existing users and if any of the listeners took any action such as visiting your website. Without these insights, you will be blindly investing time and money in your ads without knowing what works and what doesn’t.

Wrapping Things Up

As the landscape of advertising shifts, it is important to apply the same principles and structure of marketing but keep up with new evolving technology and platforms. Spotify provides a huge outreach that can cater to specific markets. It is up to brands to design a strategy that harnesses these features for better conversions. Spotify Ad Studio is a powerful wholesome tool that enables you to manage your campaign from its creation, segmentation to customizing its full execution. You can find out more information on Spotify Ad Studio here. Bear in mind the pointers in this article and you will be equipped to go forth and conquer your digital audio ad!