Understanding the Ins and Outs of Spotify
There are some pretty depressing stats about who gets the lions share of plays on the platform and unsurprisingly its major label artists – in a must-read article in Variety called
Eight Takeaways From Spotify’s Public Offering Filing, I learned that indies have to fight for only 13% of the platforms share (if you are not on a major or even an “indie” label) This means you better have a strategy in place!
Now that you are verified the fun can start! If you have not gotten verified yet please read part 1 of our Spotify series which will walk you through how to do this!
“the companies representing the content owners — Universal Music Group, Sony Music Entertainment, Warner Music Group, and Merlin, representing indie labels.. collectively account for 87% of the streams on Spotify,” – Variety Magazine
Get Your Insights
When you’re a verified artist you get access to Spotify for Artists which allows you to do three things.
This is straight from the FAQs on the platform:
Know Your Audience:
- Demographics: Learn about who your listeners are — including their age, their gender, and what features they’re using to discover and play your music. Use your insights to refine promotion or secure new partnerships.
- Location: See detailed breakdowns of where people are listening to your music. Artists are using this data to route tours and pitch songs to local radio.
- Similar artists: See other artists your fans are listening to so you can find a perfect tourmate or collaborator — or use it to better target your marketing.
- Live listeners: Your live listeners update in real time, so you know how many people are listening to your music on Spotify.
Make it Your Own
- Customize your profile picture with images of your choice
- Decide which song will be your “Artist Pick” ( this can be your favorite song of yours, a favorite song of another artist, etc)
Track Your Growth
- Playlist data: Playlists are key to reaching new listeners. See who’s adding your music to their playlists and how that’s helping you get discovered.
- Playlist notifications: Getting added to a playlist is a moment to celebrate — so we’ll let you know when we add you to one of our 4,500 curated playlists.
TIP: Now that you have some insights create a playlist that matches who your followers and fans are. There are over 2 BILLION user-generated playlists on Spotify, and according to them over 35 million have at least one emoji in their title – so if you are an emoji type of person use one!
Use Insights to Make Informed Marketing Decisions
Choose your which singles to promote and how to market your music overall using Insights. If you know which song is performing best, you can focus your effort towards pushing the piece of music out that will reach the most fans. A good rule of thumb is to release a new track on Spotify every 4-6 weeks.
Customize your Spotify Page:
Your branding is essential. A sharp looking artist homepage will make more people likely to check your music out, ultimately becoming your fans. Consistency shows that you are a serious artist. This means upload your best photo and make sure that it matches your site and socials and be sure to add a fantastic bio.
Here are some examples of artists who used Insights to their advantage and how you can too! (information from: Artists Blog)
Lucy Rose: Lucy is a British singer/songwriter who used Insights to find out that many of her fans live in South America. By focusing on booking shows in South America as part of her tour, she was able to play to shows that were packed with crowds who loved her music.
Jake Udell: Jake Udell, the founder of TH3RD BRAIN (an artist management company that represents artists like Zhu, Gallant, Krewella, and Grace Vanderwaal), used Spotify insights to recognize when Zhu and Skrillex song “Working For it” spiked in streams. He used this data to focus on marketing and booking headlining tours for Zhu.