Tips for Self-Serve Ads for Small Businesses

Self-serve advertising is a great solution for small businesses that are ready to support and serve their ads.

Instead of going back and forth with a sales team, small businesses can use a self-service advertising platform to quickly and easily set a budget, determine targeting parameters and launch creative elements, selecting exactly what best suits their brand.

In fact, that’s why Spotify Ad Studio exists: to help businesses share their messages with millions of people through easy-to-use self-service tools. Ad Studio lets engaged listeners stream the music and podcasts they love, and it’s open to advertisers. In fact, 61% of Spotify listeners say digital audio ads help them discover new brands.1

Here are seven self-service advertising tips for small businesses so you can get the most out of your digital audio campaigns and grab your audience’s attention when and where it matters most.

1. Set your budget

First, decide which budget works best for your advertising goals, whether they’re focused on brand awareness, driving traffic, or increasing conversions.

Self-serve platforms like Ad Studio offer flexible pricing options, so you can bring your small business advertising ideas to life on any budget, starting at just $250. You only pay when an ad is shown and you can adjust your budget as needed based on customer demand and targeting criteria.

2. Choose the right ad format

Digital audio ads are available in a range of engaging formats designed for customers to listen wherever they are.

In Ad Studio, small businesses can choose from the following formats:

Audio announcements

Audio ads play between songs on any device at any time, ensuring your messages are heard.

  • Point: To further engage the audience, ask listeners to perform an action such as “Tap now to learn more.” Including exclusives or promo codes in your audio ads can also boost engagement.
Video Ads

Video ads play as people browse and discover new music and podcasts.

  • Point: No need to rely on overly flashy subtitles and visuals. Unlike other platforms, Spotify audiences see your video ads with sound, as long as the Spotify app is live and the listener is interacting with their device.
Podcast announcements

Podcast ads are launched in top podcast series and episodes, reaching listeners when they are already engaging with entertaining or educational audio content.

  • Point: Keep your script conversational with a slow pace and well-timed pauses so it fits seamlessly into the listener’s experience.

“Over the past year of running campaigns with Spotify Ad Studio, we’ve learned that there are a few key aspects to creating compelling audio ads,” said Bailey Garrison, advertising manager at Articulate. “Keep advertising short, direct, and memorable. You only have 30 seconds to capture the listener’s attention and deliver your message, so you want to make sure you can do it clearly and concisely.”

3. Target engaged audiences

The best advertising strategies for small businesses rely on reaching the right audience. Audience targeting tools can help you connect with the people most likely to be interested in your message.

“Our best performing audio ad to date focused on the broad Spotify audience and aligned with our brand goals,” said Alejandro Medina, Principal Performance Analyst, Grupo Bursátil Mexicano. “To make our advertising super relevant to listeners, we deliberately crafted our message to match the medium that brought it to our target audience.”

Within Ad Studio, brands can connect with listeners based on:

  • Demographic: age, gender and location
  • Behaviour: interests, fan base and background
  • Environment: platforms, devices and genres

If you know who you’re reaching, where and why you’re reaching them, you can also create more personalized ads that respond to people’s unique interests and values.

4. Consider brand safety

Brand safety is now the biggest trust issue for advertisers,2 beating data security and privacy, according to the 2021 Advertiser Perceptions Trust Report. That’s why it’s important to choose a self-service platform that takes brand safety seriously and lets you control how and where your ads are shown.

On Ad Studio, advertisers can choose the types of ads they serve and the formats in which they serve. With built-in content controls, you can also exclude certain content topics and categories from your targeting, making Spotify a safe space for your brand and your audience.

5. Try ad rotation

Ad rotation allows you to customize how multiple ads are delivered to your audience, optimizing performance across all platforms.

The different types of ad rotation include:

  • Same spin, where all creative elements are distributed randomly and evenly.
    Point: Test new messaging ideas to see which ones work best.
  • Weighted Rotation, which allows you to prioritize certain ads over others for increased visibility.
    Point: Place more emphasis on timely promotions than on-going advertisements to publicize seasonal sales and time-sensitive offers.
  • Sequential rotation, where you can choose the order in which people hear or see your ads.
    Point: Run episodic ads that tell a story or guide users through specific stages of your marketing funnel.

6. Measure your results

It’s important to measure campaign performance and gather actionable insights to ensure you stay on track to achieve your goals.

Ad Studio’s suite of measurement solutions offers real-time reporting, campaign summaries, and budget tracking. You can also keep an eye on metrics such as:

  • Advertisements served
  • To reach
  • Frequency
  • Completion rate
  • Clicks
  • Demography
  • Conversions

With this data at your fingertips, you can better understand what your listeners are reacting to, who is watching your ads, and how you can adjust your self-service campaign strategies to increase reach and revenue.

7. Test and optimize for future success

Perhaps the best part of self-service platforms is that they give the advertiser complete control. Since you’re in control, you have the freedom and flexibility to adjust campaigns, apply real-time insights, and experiment with new ideas as you see fit.

Not sure which audience to target? Test different options and see which offers the best results. Still hesitating between audio or video ads? Spend a small budget on each and let the data point you in the right direction.

Ad Studio makes it easy to manage multiple campaigns and budgets so you can maximize your future success and achieve top ratings with your listeners.

Ready to create your own campaigns and put these small business advertising ideas into practice? Get started today with Spotify Ad Studio.

About Deborah Wilson

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