Pop up ads on YouTube have proved to be a runaway success. Almost every release see’s artists paying for ad’s. As the prominence of streaming grows around the world, Spotify have announced that they are now also offering ‘Paid Promotion’.
These paid-for alerts will take the form of full-screen ‘recommendations,’ which essentially take over the entire app. Premium users can opt-out of the alerts, but will also receive them by default. Spotify has been testing the concept on mobile for a few months to select users.
Spotify is aiming to keep the recommendations relevant to users, even though they’re paid. So Punjabi fans won’t get Selena Gomez alerts — at least according to the plan. “One thing that won’t change is that these recommendations will continue to be powered by your music taste, so you will only hear from artists that you frequently listen to or follow,” Spotify reiterated. “We hope you enjoy these recommendations — but if you’re not into them, Premium subscribers can turn them off.”
Spotify emphasized that this is just a test, specifically for the U.S. The streaming giant also downplayed the direct pay-for-promotion nature of the program, focusing instead on its existing algorithms and human curation.
Paying money, you see, only accentuates the existing recommendation flow. Spotify explained that the blasts will only go to audiences that have listened to or followed the artist previously. “We personalize these new album recommendations based on your listening taste, combined with human curation,” Spotify explained in a blog post. “With an upcoming test we’re running in the U.S., we’re giving artists and their teams the ability to directly tap into this process and connect with the fans that care most about their music.”
But major labels, who are part-owners of the platform, have long secured juicy playlist slots and promotional placements. Now, it looks like the pay-for-placement game is opening to a broader group — at least for those that can afford it.
Maybe that’s a good thing, both for smaller artists and labels and Spotify itself. Even fans may benefit, with motivated artists potentially connecting with receptive listeners.
No price structure has been released for the trials: