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4 ways to rev up your auto marketing plans with digital audio ads

A new generation of car buyers is hitting the road — and they’re active digital audio listeners. Here’s how auto brands and dealers can reach them.

Auto advertisers, start your engines. Millennial and Gen Zs are hitting the road like never before, and their purchase behaviors are pretty different from Baby Boomers. Their car-buying journey is less likely to start in a dealership, and more likely to start online.

  • 52%

    Listeners who hear auto ads on Spotify are 52% more likely to purchase the new vehicle being promoted.

    Source: 8 Oracle Auto BTR Mar-Jun 2019

That’s where Spotify comes in. Millennial and Gen Z Spotify Free listeners aren’t just spending a lot of time behind the wheel. They’re also spending more time researching their next auto purchase — and digital audio ads are along for the ride.

Here’s how auto brands and local dealers can make the best of digital audio.

Accelerate your brand-building efforts with digital audio ads

Buying a new car is a big deal for Spotify Free listeners, who are 2.3X more likely to be a first-time car buyer.1

The problem for auto brands? This valuable audience of first-time car buyers aren’t spending as much time on the showroom floor, talking to dealers in person. Instead, 90 percent of today’s auto-buying journey now takes place on smartphones, tablets, and computers.2

That’s where digital audio ads come in. Spotify Free listeners stream an average of 2.5 hours per day,3 across those same devices where the auto-buying journey is taking place. Digital audio also reaches more listeners than traditional broadcast radio, and adds additional unique reach to other media channels like TV, video streaming, and social media. And ad exposure alone drives a 41% lift in auto ad recall with digital audio — meaning audio ads are an essential step of today’s car-buying journey.4

  • 18.5%

    Spotify delivers 18.5% incremental unique weekly reach to radio in all US markets

    Source: Spotify & Kantar: TNS Research, US Age=16-64, 2020
  • 2.3X

    Spotify Free listeners are 2.3X more likely to be a first-time car buyer.

Tap into a new, high-intent audience: Podcast listeners

Podcast listeners are an auto brand’s dream. One in three surveyed Spotify podcast listeners plan to purchase or lease a new vehicle in the next year.5 They trust ads more if they hear them during a podcast. And they’re primed to take action, with 81% of listeners saying they take action as a result of listening to a podcast ad.6

That’s why podcast ads are one of the most effective ways to take your auto-marketing efforts to the next level. Spotify is making it easier than ever for companies of all sizes, from global auto brands to local dealers, to get started with podcast ads. Learn more about podcast advertising on Spotify, and sign up to join the waitlist for podcast ads on our self-serve advertising platform.

  • 81%

    Percent of podcast listeners who take action as a result of listening to a podcast ad.

Shift gears and try out new creative formats

Digital audio offers auto advertisers more creative ways to connect with listeners than traditional broadcast radio. Give listeners the gift of 30 minutes of ad-free music with a Sponsored Session. Take a creative cue from Volkswagen and experiment with 3D audio, an effect that makes sound “move” around a listener. 7

Or try the best of both worlds — A multi-format campaign that combines audio ads when people are listening while doing something else (say, driving), with display and video ads when the Spotify app is in view. Multi-format campaigns (with audio and video) show a 2.2X greater increase in brand awareness than video ads alone.

Give your audience targeting a tune up

Digital audio enables auto advertisers to reach the right audience, in the right moment, at the right location. That makes for a more effective campaign: Studies show Spotify listeners are more likely to recall an ad if it recognizes their moment or setting.

  • 75%

    Percent of Spotify listeners recall ads more when ads recognize their moment or setting.

    Source: Spotify Nielsen Brand Effect Studies, 2018

Our audience targeting tools on Ad Studio, Spotify’s self-serve ad platform, go beyond basic demographics to help brands connect with listeners across devices, moments, and formats while they stream the music and podcasts they love. Start from the basics with age, gender, and location targeting, before deciding on the context — like while they’re driving and listening to a podcast, or streaming a workout playlist from their smartphone, and more.

Good news for auto advertisers of all sizes: You don’t need a Cadillac-sized budget to run a Cadillac-quality digital marketing campaign. Get started with our self-serve ad platform to reach local auto buyers, and win over the next generation of customers.

Learn more about Spotify Ad Studio.

1 MRI/Simmons Winter 2020 NHCS Adult Study 12-month, US, Spotify Free Users 2 9Clouds.com, How Auto Leads Move Through the Digital Sales Funnel, Updated on 05/15/20 3 Spotify First Party Data, Global, 2019, based on daily content hours / daily active users, ad-supported users multiplatform 4 Spotify Nielsen Brand Effect Benchmarks March 2020 (US Auto campaigns) 5 Base: A18+. % of podcast listeners of whom Spotify is their most-used platform. 2Edison Research, H2 2020 Spotify is their most used platform for podcast listening. 6 Crowd DNA & Spotify, “We’re All Ears,” US, 2018 7 Nielsen Brand Effect on Spotify, March 2020

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