SoundCloud ‘opens for business’ on Irish advertising sales

Platform plans to negotiate ‘creator partnerships’ between brands and artists

Sonia Flynn, international vice-president of SoundCloud.  Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill / The Irish Times

Sonia Flynn, international vice-president of SoundCloud. Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill / The Irish Times

 

SoundCloud will be working with Irish advertisers “to help them understand the ad opportunity” on the audio platform, says Sonia Flynn, the Berlin- headquartered company’s international vice-president.

SoundCloud is now “open for business” to advertisers in this part of the world, with website builder Squarespace and music distributor TuneCore two of its first advertisers.

Both companies already advertise on SoundCloud in the United States, where the company has sold advertising since it began the thorny business of “monetisation” in 2014.

Revenue streams on the ad-supported version will include display ads, audio ads, promoted profiles and tracks, and “creator partnerships”, where SoundCloud negotiates link-ups between brands and artists as they release new material.

Global Radio’s Digital Audio Exchange will serve as the SoundCloud advertising network, representing programmatic and direct sales, while brand partnerships, such as the recent link-up between violinist SizzleBird and Jaguar on the track Leaves, will be looked after in-house.

Flynn, a former managing director of Facebook Ireland, is the Irish woman overseeing SoundCloud’s bid to get two revenue streams under way in Ireland and Britain, while the company has also hired David Couch as head of sales.

As well as selling ads on the existing free version, it will be taking as many opportunities as it can to upsell users to its new premium product, SoundCloud Go, which costs €9.99 a month.

SoundCloud has 175 million monthly users and a largely millennial audience, but it has yet to make money from music and other audio streaming.