News & Insights

Introducing: Canvas for Advertisers

Launching exclusively in Ad Studio, Canvas for Advertisers brings the much-loved looping visual to your audio ads on Spotify. Meaning potentially increased engagement, at no additional cost. Scroll down to find out more.

When a track is played on the Spotify app, a looping visual often accompanies it—telling a visual story to a song that enriches the listening experience. We call this feature Canvas, and now we’re making it available to global users of our self-serve ads manager, Ad Studio. This new, visual companion asset will help advertisers reach in-focus listeners with an immersive, full-screen, creative canvas alongside their audio ad.

Ahead of launch, we carried out research to determine the impact of this dynamic feature—and found that it not only drove increased engagement, but also lifted purchase intent.

Key benefits of Canvas for Advertisers

In short, here’s how you can expect Canvas for Advertisers to drive incremental value for your next audio ad campaign:

• Tell your brand or product’s story with an immersive vertical and full-screen image or looping visual that accompanies your audio ad

• Help drive engagement and purchase intent as listeners actively view the static or looping visual when the Spotify app is in focus (mobile only)

• Delivered at no additional cost for Reach, Impressions, and Click objectives

• Bonus: Trim and re-apply your existing 9:16 assets from popular social media ad formats to leverage this visual storytelling opportunity while maximizing your resources

In research conducted by Nielsen, we found that listeners who were exposed to both the audio and full-screen visual of a brand's ad at the same time experienced:

  • 12%

    lift in aided awareness

    ...compared to not hearing an ad at all.¹

  • 6%

    lift in purchase intent

    ...compared to not hearing an ad at all.²

How it works

Every feature in Ad Studio is designed to be used with ease, and Canvas for Advertisers is no exception. Here’s how it works.

If a listener is served an ad when they aren’t looking at their screen, the standard companion asset will appear, filling the space usually occupied by album artwork as your audio ad is played.

If a listener is served an ad while in focus on the Spotify mobile app, however, they’ll be served the Canvas companion asset—so long as you’ve paired one with your audio ad. This could either be a static image or a looping visual, depending on the asset you upload, filling the entire screen to create an immersive, native ad experience that can drive engagement and purchase intent. Your audio ad will play between songs or during a podcast.

Creative best practices

So you’re ready to try out Canvas for Advertisers with your next audio ad? Follow these creative best practices for your best chance of success.

  1. Design for your creative asset to be viewed with the sound off. Whether new or pre-existing, your image or looping visual will automatically play in sound-off mode to ensure the ad voiceover and background music is heard.

  2. Utilize vertical creative to drive engagement. Your image or looping visual should fill the entire mobile screen to create an immersive experience when listeners are in focus.

  3. Mind the hidden and safe areas when cropping creative. Anything in the "safe" area will be visible to listeners, but playback controls will partially obstruct your creative asset at the top and bottom of the screen.

Creative requirements

Image or Video

9:16 (same as common ad formats on social media platforms, like FB/IG Story Ads, TikTok Vertical Video Ads, Snapchat Image or Video Ads)

720px - 1080px

  • JPG or PNG for image
  • MP4 or MOV for looping visual

  • Static for image
  • 3 secs - 8 secs for looping visual

Advertisers upload a video trimmed down to 3-8 seconds. Ad Studio automatically loops the video and plays it in sound-off mode so that the ad voiceover and background music can be heard.

Mobile app only (not supported on desktop)

A square companion image is still required and will appear when an ad is shown on desktop devices, or when an ad is served to a listener who is out of focus (ie. on a locked phone screen).

Ready to level up your audio ad creative—at no extra cost?

Sign into Ad Studio to get started.

Source: 1-2 Nielsen Study ‘Spotify Ads Player 2.0’, Jan 2023

Looking for something a little more custom? Let's talk.