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Spotify and Meta updated political ad offerings for the 2022 election cycle

Spotify and Meta have made significant changes to their ad platforms as they prepare for the 2022 US midterm elections. These changes are likely to af

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Spotify and Meta have made significant changes to their ad platforms as they prepare for the 2022 US midterm elections. These changes are likely to affect spending on political advertising in this election cycle.

Spotify brings back political ads. According to an email Spotify sent to partners this week:

  • Political ads will be eligible to run across thousands of podcasts on and off Spotify.
  • Spotify podcasts will have the ability to turn off political ads.
  • Ads will only be shown on the Spotify podcast network at this time.
  • Ads will not be shown on free music networks.
  • Spotify will only host ads from known political entities (not groups related to the issue).

Political advertisers can also target niche audiences using Spotify’s AI-based Content Targeting. Spotify says this will allow advertisers to place ads in podcasts to discuss relevant issues to reach their target audience.

Spotify stopped running all political ads in 2020 because it was unable to “responsibly verify” political ads. So what has changed in 2022?

“We have spent the past two years strengthening and enhancing our processes, systems, and tools to responsibly validate and review this content,” a Spotify spokesperson told Protocol.

Targeting the definition now includes updated congressional districts. Advertisers will have the ability to target audiences based on US congressional districts. This information will reflect the 2020 Census and will be eligible for all ADs and APIs under the “2020 Census” notation. When the regions are completed, you will start rolling them out via Meta to target geolocation.

One problem: If the congressional map is under litigation, there will be no targeting at the moment. So advertisers will have to target users manually by zip code or city.

Pre-2020 census information will remain eligible to target until the beginning of 2023. All advertisers looking to run ads on Meta properties will still need to obtain the appropriate disclaimer in order to be eligible.

Why do we care: As we approach the next election cycle, political advertisers will have new opportunities thanks to Spotify and the updated Constituency System in Meta. This should lead to more spending on digital advertising – and if Spotify AI works as advertised, it’s a much more dedicated option for political advertisers.


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About the author

Greg Finn is the Director of Marketing for Cypress North, a company that offers digital marketing and web development. He is the co-host of Marketing O’Clock and has been in the digital marketing field for nearly 20 years. You can also find Greg on Twitter (Tweet embed) or LinkedIn.

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