Admit it — you’re not a fan of ad breaks.
Almost everyone wishes they could skip the ads that play before a YouTube video, or in between Spotify songs. More importantly for advertisers, about 25% of people act on the impulse by using ad blocking software.
You might think that an innate dislike of advertising is driving this behavior; however, that’s not the case. People aren’t opposed to advertising — they just don’t like the kind of advertising they are seeing: Irrelevant, uninspiring, and impersonal. In fact, two-thirds of people who use ad blocking software say that they are open to discontinuing the practice if the experience of watching ads improves.
So, how do brands and creative brand consulting advertisers break through this resistance?
Spotify thinks they have the answer.
A truce in the ad blocking wars
In the summer of 2018, Spotify began testing a new ad protocol in Australia called Active Media. The idea was simple: Give users more control over the ad viewing process. Active Media allowed Spotify users to skip all of the ads they wished, unlike the regular free Spotify service which requires limited ad viewing. It also allowed advertisers to avoid having to pay for any of their ads that were skipped over by users.
Sounds like a win for users and brands, right? But how does Spotify benefit?
If you’re thinking “by getting access to valuable subscriber data,” give yourself a well-earned pat on the back. By allowing users to choose only the ads they are truly interested in, the streaming music service learns more about its user’s preferences.
This is critical for Spotify, as it seeks to evolve into a full-service platform rather than a publisher. By gathering deeper and more precise user data, Spotify learns what users like and what they want — information they can later share with brands. Armed with this data, brands can create relevant, personalized, and targeted campaigns.
That kind of engagement moves the needle for advertisers, something that ultimately could lead to Spotify earning more money for each spot it runs. In that sense, Active Media is a bet on quality over quantity, and the notion that people will respond favorably to ads (and will avoid finding technological means to avoid them) if they are given more control over what they see.
In all, it is a win/win for everyone — except the developers of ad blocking software, of course.
What creative brand consulting can do to assist you
Great campaigns require two things: Exceptional creative work and sophisticated technological understanding. Luckily for you, we specialize in both here at BIGEYE. We help clients develop the kind of campaigns that delight and inspire, then use technological tools to ensure that work gets delivered to the right audience – ultimately providing positive RI for their business.