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Spotify’s New Ad Studio Tool

What are the podcast ad implications here?

Spotify is adding a tool to their Ad Studio that will help artists and their labels see what actions listeners take after hearing an advert for a song. It will track what actions a user takes upon hearing an audio clip as part of a marketing campaign — do they add the song to a playlist, listen to it, or ignore it completely.

There seem to be some positive findings so far, with TechCrunch reporting that one agency has found that “38 percent of people who heard the ad went on to listen to the artist, and nearly 20 percent of those listeners streamed his music for the first time that month”. No suggestion yet that anything like this might be opened up to podcasters or spoken word publishers, but it seems like a mechanism that could be very useful for non-music content as well.

Related: There’s a well-argued case in this Wall Street Journal article for why Spotify is pivoting away from just streaming music. What with all the licensing and dealing with record labels, the platform itself doesn’t make a huge profit. Understand that, and their recent pattern of podcast company acquisitions — via which they now have a mass market production company (Parcast), a prestigious audio brand (Gimlet) and a way of monetising third party podcasts (Anchor) — makes a lot of sense. Unlike how things have developed with music streaming, with podcasting, they want much better control of the whole supply chain.