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How to Advertise on Spotify

When you think of Spotify, you think of jamming to your current favourite tracks on repeat – whether it’s at the gym, at home, or even in the car on the way to work. Except Spotify isn’t just another streaming service.

The streaming platform presents significant potential for brands to implement innovative marketing strategies. The rising popularity of user-generated content, alongside Spotify’s rapid growth in consumer base offers brands substantial opportunities to grow their brand personality. Through Spotify, brands can focus on developing interpersonal relationships with target consumers through both tailored ads and in-bound marketing.

In this post, we’ll provide 5 Spotify marketing strategies to differentiate your brand in the highly competitive digital marketing environment.

So, why Spotify?

While popular social media platforms such as Instagram and Facebook may provide access to a wider range of audiences, Spotify’s smaller yet rapidly growing consumer base provides brands with a first mover advantage. In other words, brands can easily stand out and employ unique and memorable marketing strategies on a less saturated platform.

Spotify’s second quarter earnings for 2021 indicates tremendous growth, with a 22% increase in monthly active users of over 365 million users. On top of this, premium subscribers grew by 20% to 165 million users, mainly from Europe and North America. Spotify has changed the way we consume music and audio. The flexibility of advertising on Spotify is highly appealing to digital marketers as brands can choose to focus on out-bound marketing, in-bound marketing or a mix of both.

1. Content Curation – Spotify Playlists

Key Tip: Align Curated Content With Your Brand’s Personality.

Content curation refers to an inbound marketing strategy that attracts consumers to the brand by sharing third-party content to create a tailored experience. Spotify’s playlist-making feature equips brands with a quick and easy way to increase engagement from consumers at a low cost.

Brands can personalise and curate playlists that resonate with the brand’s identity and values. Not only will it increase brand awareness, but it will also make your brand appear less promotional and more relatable. Curating Spotify playlists that reflects the brand means consumers can easily connect with the brand from listening to songs selectively chosen by the brand. It gives consumers a fun way to learn about the brand with a more personalised experience.


Barilla Italia curates various playlists that last exactly how long it takes to cook the desired pasta type. For instance, the Mixtape Spaghetti playlist garnered over 16,622 followers. The large engagement showcases the high-impact that curated content can have on consumers. The brand is able to co-create value with consumers that reflects the brand’s playfulness and creativity by appealing to their auditory senses.


Similarly, Gymshark curates playlists targeting avid gym-goers based on their mood and workout plans. In doing so, the sportswear brand effectively associates working out to the brand in the minds of consumers.

This strategy focuses on enhancing brand personality while strengthening the development of brand communities. It is an effective way to facilitate engagement and interaction. Spotify’s listening activity sharing feature provides further exposure, as listeners can share the playlists they are listening to with their followers.

2. Content Marketing – Branded Podcasts

Key Tip: Balance Between Brand Advocacy and Relatable Content.

The increasing popularity of podcasts highlights the significance of using digital audio as a form of advertising. Brands can capitalise on increasing podcast consumption by employing audio marketing. Branded podcasts can provide informative content for consumers who already are interested in your brand. Podcast genre choice reflects listener’s attitudes towards their surrounding environment.


The Dior Talks Podcast []and Gucci Podcast are examples of in-bound content marketing strategy. The podcasts act as an outlet for consumers to gain insight on the brands’ artistic, cultural and narrative backgrounds.

In essence, podcasts allow for storytelling – brands can effectively target audiences by creating content that is self-enhancing and appealing to their emotions. However, it is important to note that brands need to be weary of being too brand-focused. Brands need to balance between advertising to sell products and building greater affinity with consumers. Brands can focus on producing engaging content that aligns with brand identity rather than on promoting the brand’s products.

3. Podcast Ads – Sponsored Sessions

Key Tip: Develop A Consumer Persona To Target Spotify’s Audience Network.

Paid advertisements are a form of an out-bound marketing strategy as brands focus on delivering content to audiences who may or may not be interested in the brand. The launch of Spotify Ad Studio in 2017 signifies the increase in B2B marketing opportunities that brands have with Spotify. For as low as $250, brands can utilise this self-serving advertising platform. Spotify also offers tips on script-writing and other free tools to create audio ads.

41% of podcast listeners trust ads more when hearing them during a podcast. Brands can tailor ads towards specific target audiences through Spotify’s Streaming Ad Insertion technology reports and measures podcast data for advertisers. Brands can also tap into the Spotify Audience Network in order to target their audience through demographic and psychographic segmentation. It is helpful to develop consumer personas and refine target audiences in order to effectively reach the desired audience to be used in conjunction with SAI technology.

4. Digital Audio Ads – Sponsored Playlists

Key Tip: Complement Your Audio With A Clickable Link To The Brand’s Site.

Audio campaigns of 5 to 30 seconds long can be advertised on Spotify and delivered to listeners at the moment that they are most receptive. Brands can develop an audio strategy that can be reached by new and potential listeners effectively. While listeners may not have as deep of a connection with curated playlists as they do with podcasts, audio ads are a cost-effective method in reaching a wide range of targeted listeners.

Spotify’s ability to match ads to listeners allows advertisers and brands to have a greater impact when delivering ads to audiences who are most likely interested in the content. It is also more memorable for listeners when ads are displayed in the moment that consumers are most receptive.

5. Video & Display Ads

Key Tip: Be Creative And Learn To Connect With Digitally Savvy Consumers.

Spotify highlights that while video ads are often viewed muted, listeners on Spotify are always engaging and streaming audio content. This provides greater value to the advertiser, as the brand’s messages are more likely to penetrate users and have greater retention. As a result, brands can focus on both auditory and visual messages that the ad can signal.


The RXBAR marketing campaign for their protein bars using a video ad substantially increased awareness and message association – the ad in 2018 achieved in a 243% ad recall and international press coverage.

Display ads on the other hand, are graphics that can be placed in Spotify’s homepage for 24 hours or displayed as an overlay every time a listener returns to their Spotify app. Displays act as a high-impact and short-duration advertisement. Click Throughs can also be directed from the graphic to ensure a smooth consumer experience.

Key Takeaways

  • Include Spotify marketing in your next digital marketing plan to gain a first mover advantage
  • Curating Spotify playlists is a low-cost and effective way to develop a strong brand personality and enhance brand equity
  • Podcasts must have a balance between brand advocacy and valuable content
  • Co-creating personalised experiences are vital to growing strong brand communities
  • Take Advantage of Spotify’s Streaming Ad Insertion technology to target your audience
  • Last but not least, know the ins and outs of Spotify Advertising!

If you’d like to speak with one of our experts on how to can take advantage of Spotify’s capabilities, let us know!

Profile Picture - Sera Mao
Sera Mao

Sera is a final year student at the University of Melbourne pursuing a Bachelor of Commerce majoring in Marketing and Finance. She was awarded the 2019 Commerce Undergraduate International Scholarship. Sera brings over 1 year of experience helping non-profit student organisations maximise engagement through organic digital campaigns and community development. Sera aspires to be a marketing analyst in the future.