Spotify have worked very hard over the last couple of years to keep their free service, free. They’ve been very successful at using advertising to create revenue from their 75million free users.

The announcement that they’re rolling out a programmatic ad platform is the latest development for Spotify for Brands. It’ll let marketers reach Spotify’s audience with display advertising, which can be targeted based on who they are and, more interestingly, what they are listening to.

And it’s something we’re pretty excited about.

Here’s just four of the reasons why:

#1 . Spotify’s Audience with 100% Viewable Ads

Spotify don’t just have a big audience. They have a super-engaged one, as these statistics from Spotify for Brands show:

Spotify Stats

This means that, as a marketer, there is huge opportunity to reach your customers; and it gets even more exciting when you combine that with Spotify’s unique propositions of:

  • 100% viewable: All of your ads appear above the fold, because as Spotify is an app, there is no fold. Spotify also won’t show your ad when the app is behind another window. This means that every impression you pay for is seen by the user.
  • 100% share at a time: When your ads show, there won’t be any other brand’s ads. This means you don’t have to compete with another advertiser for the user’s attention.

#2 . Music’s Impact on Shopping Behaviour

The fact that music shapes shopping behaviour is well known. The music we listen to is influenced by our mood and goes on to dictate it, and you can use this music/mood relationship to influence shopping behaviour.

Now that Spotify offers you the ability to target advertising based on the type of music being listened to, you can adjust your targeting and ad messaging in effective ways. For example, if you’re a travel company and you know that a user aged 18-24 is listening to Balearic House, you can make an educated guess they’re in a “I wish I was in the sun” mood, and you can serve an ad that promotes a clubbing holiday to Ibiza.

#3 . Second-screening

TV has been a huge influence over the Top 40 for as long as I can remember. Shaggy’s Boombastic and Babylon Zoo’s Spaceman were arguably hits purely because they featured in Levi’s ads on TV.

It’s also common-place now for brands to use ‘shazam for info’ call-to-actions in TV ads.

With Spotify’s Programmatic ads, a brand can now choose to show ads to people who are listening to the music featured in their TV creative.

#4 . Music Signals + RTB = Mind blown

OK, this one is us predicting what could be possible, but bear with us.

Imagine, if Spotify opened up its data to real-time-bidding technology platforms with an API. We could potentially create a data stack that could combine demographic, web and social signals with what a user is listening to NOW.

How’s this for an example, it’s November, I’ve just tweeted that I need some new trainers. I’ve been visiting web content reviewing running shoes, and then I jump on Spotify and listen to James Brown’s The Payback because I need to get psyched up for my next run. I’m sure Nike would love to be able to serve me this ad.

Music or Noise?

What do you think? Is programmatic ad buying on Spotify going to be a hit? Or do you think the influx of ads is going to cause unwanted noise that’s going to put users off? Tweet us @rocketmill to share your opinion.