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Bidding: Cost Per Play

There are few pricing models when it comes to online advertising. There are CPCs (Cost per Click), CPMs (Cost per Mile), CPAs (Cost per Action), and CPVs (Cost per View). CPC is used in link advertising (like Google Adwords), CPMs are mostly used in display or email marketing, CPAs are used to pay for defined user action, like registration or purchase (it is also called a performance model) and CPVs are used as a price metrics for online video advertising. For example, Cost per Click shows how much an advertiser is going to pay for one user to click on one of the advertiser’s links.

Defining our product we decided to introduce a new pricing model as we had a feeling that none of the above is applicable for audio. This is how Cost per Play was brought to the market.

In other words, it defines a price that the advertiser is going to pay for playing one ad played to the unique listener. Sometimes we also use Cost per Playout but both terms describe the same (Cost per Play is just easier to pronounce).


In programmatic advertising, smart software solutions automate the process of buying and selling the ad space. Systems operate to match and balance the supply (ad space to sell) with demand (advertisers willing to buy). Its dynamics rely on millions of individual, automated auctions between advertisers and ad suppliers. Both of the parties define their price (bid) – the advertiser defines the highest price they are willing to pay, and the publisher defines the price for an ad space to sell. If the publisher’s offer is lower than the advertiser’s – the deal is done.

In case there are multiple advertisers bidding for the same ad space, the one offering the highest price wins, and if there are multiple free slots in one ad space, slots are sold as long as they are available from highest to lowest possible bid.

This market logic is also implemented in AdTonos, ad slots are being bid by advertisers and they are being sold as long as the lowest price set by the publisher is met (called floor price) or there is available ad space.

When setting your campaign you place your CPP bid – that is the price you are willing to pay for one ad played to the unique listener.

Please note that if your current bid is too low and the campaign is not played we will send you an email alert to help you stay on track.