Last week, music streaming service Spotify announced their impressive numbers: 20 million active users worldwide, out of which 5 million are paying subscribers. Besides revealing new numbers, Spotify also announced a new and improved user experience, which will start rolling out in the coming weeks. The new Spotify revolves around two main features: A discovery tab and a follow tab, which give users a more personal experience on the music network.
The Follow tab
With the follow tab, Spotify will become more of an actual social network no longer dependent on Facebook to create interaction. The follow tab will allow users to get real-time info about what music other people in their network are listening to, and you will also be able to follow artists and influencers. This way, artists can easily keep their fans posted about new releases, fans can see what music their favourite artists are inspired by and influencers can share their picks on music to listen to. Spotify will also offer push notifications for new releases by artists you follow, giving artists better promotional possibilities as well assuring keen fans to always stay updated. Spotify’s CEO, Daniel Ek, explains:
“For example, when Bruno Mars is writing a new record, he’ll share with his followers what he’s listening to during the process. Spotify has basically taken social elements of Facebook and encouraging music fans to connect with their favorite artists directly on Spotify, rather than driving them to connect elsewhere.”
The Discover tab
Based on your listening history, existing library and what your network is listening to, the Discover tab will show you relevant music. The musical discovery thus becomes a more social and personal experience and will happen through desktop apps. It will focus more on already existing apps that some of you might already be using, such as Songkick, Moodagent or Pitchfork, but the Discover tab will without a doubt entail a lot of new music discovery apps and will make them easier to access. The increased focus on apps opens up for a number of branding possibilities.
Experimental branding on Spotify
As Henriette blogged, music is a conversational touch point that most consumers can relate to and have passionate opinions about. The new version of Spotify gives brands an opportunity to tell their brand story and connect with consumers using music as the passion point. In 2012, Spotify partnered up with global brands such as Coca Cola and Reebok giving users larger branded experiences through music. With the new Spotify, my guess is that we will see a growth in brands tapping into digital music by making use of the platform to forge deep and meaningful relationships with fans through brand profiles, branded playlists and branded apps.