In its bid to bring in some much-needed cash, SoundCloud has announced that videowill soon be making its debut on the mobile app… though not in the form that many have been hoping for.
SoundCloud announced recently that it was venturing into the world of video advertising, which will roll out initially in the U.S. solely on mobile, at least to begin with. The jump to video ads is new for the platform, though it isn’t entirely surprising. Video ads come with a higher price point than audio ones, and the manner in which SoundCloud is planning on showing these clips ensures that the music player can charge a premium for them.
Instead of simply playing ads whenever a person has the app open and music blasting, SoundCloud will only stream a video commercial in between songs when the screen of the mobile device being used is actually on, and when that person has just been actively engaging with the app. The ad won’t stream if the app is in the background or if the screen is off, which should please advertisers worried about wasting some of their precious marketing dollars on ads that will be ignored or played while a phone is in someone’s pocket.
While ads have always been a part of the free tier for services like Spotify and Pandora , they are relatively new to SoundCloud, which for many years was much more focused on being artist-friendly than on making money. That might sound like a great idea, but it created a strained relationship with the music industry, which had to sit back as millions of song were played over and over (sometimes in their original form, other times disguised as remixes or mashups) while the proper payments simply didn’t appear.
Video is also a format that has never had a home at SoundCloud, but now that ads will be shown in such a way, other forms of content could be on the way. Many services that have typically been music-only have begun venturing into the video territory lately, and it traditional music videos and possibly even original shows could one day also appear.