It's already got 175 million global users but now music platform SoundCloud is taking aim at the Australian landscape as it brings its streaming offering to the local market, with the service also opening itself up to local advertisers. It's also hunting for a team on the ground.
Called SoundCloud Go, the service is a premium version of its traditional offering, which allows users to create playlists, follow artists, engage with stations and of course play songs in full and ad free. Go users will be able to listen to verified artists as well as the original content which the platform is known for.
SoundCloud is well and truly diving head first into the ANZ landscape, however it's not alone, with its offering being similar to the likes of Spotify, Pandora and even Apple Music. The price point of SoundCloud Go sits in line with most of its rivals, with the service costing AU$11.99 / NZ$12.99 per month. Globally, SoundCloud has worked with the likes of Nestle and Jaguar, but it hasn't yet revealed who's onboard with the offering just yet.
Speaking with AdNews, vice president of international for SoundCloud, Sonia Flynn, says the business already has a “significant” amount of people in this market using its service, with the brand seeing a strong demand for what SoundCloud has to offer.
“We have a lot of really interesting opportunities in Australia,” she says. “Recent numbers from Nielsen show there's a keen interest in what we do and a lot of it [our audience] is not duplicated with other services, so we see great opportunity for both SoundCloud Go and advertising in this market.”
While Flynn wouldn't be led on the exact numbers of users the service currently has locally, she highlighted the that Australia is just the first Southern Hemisphere market is a sign of its user base here. Berlin-founded SoundCloud is already in the US, the UK, Ireland and France.
Flynn admitted that SoundCloud Go is set to face some competition in this market saying: “There's no questions that it's a competitive space.”
“For us it's about the unique content we have on SoundCloud and we think it's unparalleled. In terms of product we also give our users a lot of control around their curation and what they listen to, we think we have some great advantages and that will come to the surface as we come to into this market,” she added.
SoundCloud is currently recruiting a Sydney-based sales team, consisting of an account manager and a sales director, who will take responsibility for managing local brand partnerships and ad sales.
When it comes to the types of advertising that will now be supporting the free version of SoundCloud locally, audio advertising, mobile interstitials, promoted tracks, creator partnerships as well as native content will feature.
Flynn does believe that due to SoundCloud's global scale, it does offer an attractive proposition for local brands.
“We have 175 million people on SoundCloud and our average listener is right in that sweet spot of millennials, 18-34, and when it comes to our advertising and our brands partnerships we have, there's lots of interesting ways of working with brands.”
Additionally, SoundCloud has partnered with AdsWizz and Triton Digital for interstitials, as well as the audio ads, fans will hear when listening to content from creators who participate in the SoundCloud monetisation programme.
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