Spotify makes podcast ads unskipable by pasting them into the app

Spotify’s new clickable ad cards.Image: Spotify

Those of us who are serial podcast listeners know how the ad exercise goes. Just before, during or after your show, a short audio clip will appear to tell you about a revolutionary product, service or sale. Some of you may skip a particularly long ad, or just quickly scroll through all the ads. However, it won’t be so easy to do that on Spotify anymore.

The streaming giant revealed are new “call-to-action cards” for podcast ads on Thursdays. The concept is quite simple. When an ad in the podcast starts playing, a small card appears at the bottom with clickable buttons that allow users to learn more about the brand, product or service talked about in the ad or make a purchase directly from the advertiser. website. Both free and paid users will see the maps, which are now available.

Spotify told Gizmodo on Thursday that the call-to-action cards will be available on its desktop, mobile and tablet apps, but not on web browsers.

Some of you may be wondering, “What happens to the maps if the app runs in the background while my phone is locked or when I’m doing something else on my device?” Don’t worry, Spotify wouldn’t think of letting you out, especially since you’re doing something while listening to a podcast, like doing the dishes while listening to Pop culture Happy Hour, is common in my case.

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That’s currently why remembering a promo code, product name or link mentioned in a podcast ad can be complicated, Spotify claims.

As the company explained, the call-to-action cards will reappear for users who listened to them while exploring the app, making it easier for them to remember and use the ad they heard. For example, the cards appear when you watch a specific podcast episode or visit the show page in the app.

“With the launch of this new ad experience, we are making podcast ads interactive for the first time, transforming the format from something that can only be heard, to an experience that you can see and, most importantly, click,” Spotify said in a news announcement.

According to Spotify, its call-to-action cards have delivered positive results in recent tests, with site visits doubling compared to non-clickable podcast ads. Three companies – Ulta Beauty, Athletic Greens and Squarespace – have already signed up as early adopters.

Spotify’s new clickable cards are just another example of the company’s quest to monetize podcasts and make the app more merchant-friendly. Over the past year and a half, the company has been podcasting giant Megaphone to better target real-time ads to listeners and create a new wake word function (“Hey Spotify”) to potentially open the door to more voice-activated ads.

As a paid Spotify user and a powerful podcast listener, according to my 2021 Spotify packed In any case, I have mixed feelings about the new ad formats for shows. While I understand that podcasts need ad sponsors, and I’d be flabbergasted if some of my favorite podcasts were to disappear due to lack of funding, Spotify has been my go-to place to escape heavy and annoying ads for years. (Instagram, for example, shows me ads as if they were hot churros).

But if Spotify is adamant about sticking ads on its platform, I’m fine with the cards. They are small, don’t follow me everywhere and support content that I really enjoy. It could have been worse.

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