Spotify provided more details today on how it plans to monetize its podcast investments. The company has announced that it is launching a new audio advertising market, the Spotify Audience Network, which will allow advertisers to reach listeners through Spotify’s own originals and exclusives, as well as podcasts via Megaphone and the tool. Anchor creation, and its ad-supported music, all in one place. The company also announced plans to offer podcasts on its self-service advertising platform, Spotify Ad Studio, starting with Spotify Originals and Exclusives in the US, in a beta testing phase.
This will expand to include third-party podcasts in the future, the company said today at its live online event, “Stream On.”
Currently, Spotify Ad Studio is used by advertisers in 22 markets after its launch in 2017, to reach Spotify music listeners with audio and video ads. Spotify said the service was its fastest growing buying channel, but didn’t provide specific numbers to detail that growth.
However, the biggest news on the advertising side has been the launch of the new audio advertising market, Spotify Audience Network. Similar to some of its other forward-looking announcements today, Spotify was light on the details of exactly how Spotify Audience Network works – saying only that it was in “the early stages of offering development.” and that he expects to be able to share more at a later date.
However, the company has positioned the market as a “game changer,” particularly for podcasters looking to make money from ads, as well as advertisers who want to reach Spotify’s audience of hundreds and thousands. millions, both on and off Spotify.
The news follows an investigative report from The Verge earlier this year that found Spotify to be the main sponsor of Anchor advertising to date – despite promises to find sponsors for smaller podcasters. It now appears that Spotify has been developing its ad market and tools to deliver on these promises, and may not have prioritized advertiser outreach in the meantime.
Spotify also explained today how its recent acquisition of Megaphone would allow it to extend its Streaming Ad Insertion (SAI) technology, launched in early 2020, to publishers beyond its own Originals and Exclusives audio programs. Today, SAI is available in the United States, Canada, Germany and the United Kingdom, and will expand to other new markets in 2021.
Since its inception, SAI has rolled out new features such as audience-based shopping, native ad placements, and creative performance reporting. Later this year, Spotify is announcing that it will make SAI available to publishers of Megaphone podcasts and “main” Anchor creators.
But Anchor’s creators won’t limit themselves to advertising to increase their income.
Spotify also briefly noted that in a few months it will begin beta testing of a new feature that will allow Anchor’s creators to post paid podcast content on Spotify for their most dedicated fans, like TechCrunch. had previously reported.