Tips for Publishers

How to Best Monetize Your Music App

3 Minute Read | October 25th, 2018

Anthony Karge

Anthony Karge
Content Marketing Manager

Music apps are one of the most popular categories on smartphones, as users around the world are looking for a way to listen to music while on the go. Another strength of music apps is that user retention rates are among the highest of all app categories. With those advantages, music apps offer publishers strong opportunities for monetization. Let us show you how to leverage the power of your music app and make your revenues really rock.

Understand the Advertisers

As an app publisher, you probably have a good grasp on who your users are and what they are looking for. After all, you have likely optimized your app based on their feedback. But understanding the advertisers is more complicated as they are not in direct contact with you. To help, we delved into the Smaato Publisher Platform (SPX) to see what sorts of advertisers are spending the most on music apps.

Retail advertisers are the biggest spenders, followed by media advertisers. The reason for the big spending by retail and media brands could be attributed to the typical demographics of music apps. This app category skews younger (18 to 34 year olds), and this demographic is more likely to have multiple music apps compared to older generations. Advertisers from the retail and media verticals could be looking to reach these users where they’re more likely to be found — in music apps.

Boost Revenues With User Data

User data is music to advertisers’ ears. To maximize your music app monetization revenue, you will want to collect the user data that matters most. Looking at our platform data from Q3 2018, we discovered the following:

  • Music apps that provide gender data to advertisers have +271% higher eCPMs than music apps that do not provide this data.
  • Passing age data from music apps resulted in +155% higher eCPMs than the apps that did not.
  • Music apps that provided location data had a +126% higher fill rate than those without, as advertisers were eager to target users based on location.

Prepare for Audio Ads

Audio ads were always a big part of the monetization strategy of the biggest music streaming companies, such as Spotify, Pandora, and others — but they were much harder to manage for smaller companies. Fortunately, programmatic audio ads are growing in popularity, which means music apps of all sizes can efficiently offer up their inventory to advertisers.

One of the reasons for the rise in programmatic audio ads is the growing popularity of voice assistant products from Amazon, Apple, and others. With a more mature programmatic audio ad infrastructure in place, music apps will also benefit.

Experiment With a Mix of Monetization Models

Depending on the type of music app you are trying to monetize, it might make sense to experiment with a freemium business model. Subscriptions can be especially effective for music streaming apps, as some users will be willing to pay more to unlock new features. In-app purchases can also work depending on the value you are providing to users. Experimenting with different prices can yield positive results regardless of the model you choose.

Maximizing Music App Monetization

The revenues from your music app have the potential to grow if you put all these insights together into a cohesive monetization strategy. Understanding what both users and advertisers are looking for, while also adjusting your strategy as needed, goes a long way in making your revenues truly pop.

For more insights into monetization, read our app monetization guide. The guide offers tips, strategies, and more to help you increase your earnings.

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