Why it matters: Advertisers and listeners alike are paying close attention to Spotify's latest experiment, and for good reason. For advertisers, it could mean more targeted ad opportunities and for listeners, they can get right back to the music in a jiffy.
Spotify is conducting an experiment in Australia in which it is allowing listeners to skip audio and video ads at will. Currently, only premium (paying) subscribers can skip ads.
Allowing free tier users to skip ads whenever they want – and as often as they want – may seem counterintuitive but Spotify’s reasoning makes sense.
Danielle Lee, global head of partner solutions at Spotify, tells AdAge that the approach is called Active Media. The idea is that listeners will only skip ads they are not interested in, thus allowing Spotify to better curate ads and improve the outcomes delivered to brands.
“Just as we create these personalized experiences like Discover Weekly, and the magic that brings to our consumers, we want to inject that concept into the advertising experience,” Lee said.
With Active Media, advertisers won’t have to pay for ads that are skipped.
Again, this feature only rolled out in testing last month and only in Australia. The hope, however, is to bring Active Media to a global audience.
It’s not as far-fetched as it sounds considering YouTube also allows users to skip some of its ads. Perhaps a mix where some ads are skippable and some aren’t would be the best approach?