Spotify is testing a new, more interactive ad format designed for podcasts: the in-app offer. Instead of prompting listeners to remember a coupon code or visit a specific website address, the in-app offer allows users to redeem an offer at a time that’s convenient for them. This is done by way of a visual reminder within the Spotify app, which displays the sponsors on the podcast episode’s page.
Below the podcast and description, a new section titled “Episode Sponsors” will appear, allowing listeners to then click through on the offer to redeem the coupon or other special deal. This will open the user’s browser to the advertiser’s landing page for immediate redemption, says Spotify.
“The average podcast listener has heard a countless number of ads ending with promo codes or show-specific websites, carefully repeated three times so as not to forget it. In-App Offers makes it vastly simpler for listeners to redeem deals whenever they come back to the app, and we can all benefit from one fewer ‘w-w-w-dot’ spelling lesson from our favorite podcast creators,” says Joel Withrow, senior product manager of Podcast Monetization at Spotify, in a statement.
The product is designed to better fit with the way users actually listen to podcasts — usually, while they’re doing something else, like cooking, cleaning, working out or driving for example. That means they often have to make a mental note of the offers they hear and want to research later. But this can be challenging.
The new product is in early alpha testing in the U.S. with Harry’s in Last Podcast on the Left and in Germany with HelloFresh in Herrengedeck. There isn’t yet a way to sign up to participate.
The new feature builds on Spotify’s existing Streaming Ad Insertion (SAI) technology, introduced at the beginning of 2020 at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas. SAI technology makes key data — like ad impressions, frequency, reach, plus anonymized age, gender and device type — available to podcasters and advertisers on Spotify for the first time. This sort of data was more difficult if not impossible, to collect via podcasts that were served only as downloads from RSS feeds.
The company explained at the time of launch the problem it aimed to solve was on the advertiser’s side — they didn’t know whether or not the ad they purchase is being consumed by the user.
SAI will be widely available to advertisers in the U.S. starting this summer, and is now available to select advertisers in Germany.
The addition of in-app offers to Spotify’s suite comes following a continued heavy investment in podcasts, podcast tools and podcasting ad technology on the company’s part. The company recently announced an exclusive audio partnership with DC & Warner Bros. and the launch of podcast playlists, for example. Spotify also just landed a podcast deal with Kim Kardashian West, focused on criminal justice, and brought top podcast The Joe Rogan Experience to its platform exclusively.
Meanwhile, Spotify says it’s seeing triple-digit growth in podcast consumption, year-over-year, on its platform, while podcasts, more broadly, are reaching 1 in 3 or 100 million Americans every month.
Spotify didn’t say when the new in-app offers ad experience would be publicly available.