Maybe you know Spotify as the app you open every time you go on a jog or hop in the car. Maybe you know Spotify as the awkward cousin of Apple Music or a copy-cat version of Pandora. What you may not know? Spotify provides crucial analytics to its artists through Spotify for Artists.
Spotify is a music application for phones, computers and tablets designed to provide the right music for the right moments. With over one million tracks available through the Spotify library, users create customized playlists based on personal tastes. Spotify also curates playlists based on mood, season and even time-of-day.
As of March 2017, Spotify claims 100 million active users and 50 million premium subscribers, making it the predominant online music application. However, while Spotify provides excellent service to individual listeners, the app constantly develops features that serve the artists themselves.
When “Fan Insights” launched in November 2015, it offered a simple way for artists to receive information about their fans. Spotify provided demographic statistics and listening habits to artists with large followings. However, a long artist verification process prevented lesser-known artists from utilizing the extent of these features.
Spotify’s re-branded effort, Spotify for Artists, improves upon the features of Fan Insights while offering artists greater creative control. Here are the highlights:
Artists take back control
Artists can now manage the layout of their artist pages on Spotify. Previously curated by Spotify employees, artist pages provide background information, photographs and upcoming concert details for Spotify users. Spotify for Artists allows musicians complete creative control over these pages including the ability to promote specific songs, fan-made playlists and personal photographs.
Re-vamped Fan Analytics
Spotify for Aritsts features an array of new features helping artists connect with their fan-base in real-time. Whenever users “like” a page, add a song to their playlist or “follow” an artist, that artist receives a notification. Additionally, Spotify sends artists detailed reports that share how the user found their page. This feature allows artists to make strategic decisions about where, when and how to promote their music. For example, British artist Lucy Rose credits the success of her Latin American tour to Spotify’s analytic tools.
“Spotify for Artists gave me the courage to tour Latin America,” she said, “It was overwhelming to hear fans sing along so far from home.”
New brand opportunities
As Spotify VP of Product Charlie Helman observes, new analytic features contribute to an ever-important commodity: an artist’s brand. Spotify for Artists assists musicians searching for a new partnership, promotion or career opportunity.
“For them to be able to pull all-time stats to show how many people have been listening to this single, or how many people within this city,” Helman said, “that just helps them create that sheet to walk into that meeting and pitch themselves with more force.”
Helping the “little guy”
Perhaps most notably, Spotify for Artists places power back in the hands of smaller artists by simplifying its artist verification process. Now the road to becoming an official artist takes less than three-days, which allows artists to access improved analytic tools with ease.
Overall, Spotify for Artist encompasses several emerging trends in the music industry and highlights the diversity of musical success stories. Successful “grassroots” artists like Chance the Rapper seem to prove that all a musician needs is talent and a platform.
“What we’re seeing now is how big the music ecosystem is,” Helman says, “When you look at, whether it’s record labels or radio stations, you only can handle a certain amount of releases and deal with a certain amount of artists, so the majority of artists around the world are kind of left behind from the mainstream system. I think these tools help them navigate that a little bit better.”