Music streaming site Guvera vows to retain ad funded model as it launches into India

Screen Shot 2014-11-13 at 12.12.17 PMAustralian music streaming business Guvera has expanded to 13 countries following its launch into India as it revealed more brands are about to come on board in the local market.

Youth holiday operator Contiki and fashion website The Iconic will begin to advertise next week, with Guvera founder and chief executive Darren Herft confirming the company will continue with its solely ad funded model.

Speaking at a Guvera event yesterday Herft said consumers are increasingly demanding free access to music rather than paying monthly subscriptions.

“In 2000 the music industry turned over US$36b, last year it was $16b, so its gone backwards by $US20b despite people consuming more music than ever before,” he said. “That drop is largely because people want to access music for free and Guvera is about giving consumers what they want, so let’s provide them a business model that provides them with what they want.”

While Guvera was initially built for the web, the focus was now on an ad funded mobile model, he said.

Herft said the native ad format will create greater engagement for brands with consumers “in as non disruptive a fashion as possible so it doesn’t annoy users”.

“Users will be happy to engage with brands because things aren’t being forced upon them,” he said. “We have got brands going live in Australia next week but users will be control. We are giving them free music and putting them in charge of the brands they engage with.”

Head of product Robb Snell said the format will provide brands with ads tailored for mobile, something many advertisers have struggled with.

“Brands want to look good on mobile but they are not getting that at the moment,” he said. “So far their experience in the digital landscape has been pretty limited on that front. As soon as they step off their own website they have little control to make sure they look fantastic so that is what we are trying to do for the brand.”

The format will mean users are not “hijacked”, Snell said, claiming that consumers are 30 times more likely to engage with a native placement over a display ad.

The battle for listeners and brand dollars is increasingly fierce with music streaming services including Spotify, Pandora, Mog, iTunes Radio, iHeartRadio among those active in the Australian market.

Steve Jones


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