Spotify’s Business with Artists Just Evolved

Spotify business, business, spotify, showcase, feature

Spotify’s new business feature, Showcase, launched in the US, providing artists with a powerful paid marketing tool to promote their music directly on Spotify’s homepage.

  • Artists can create sponsored mobile cards, offering users a curated selection of music, including new releases and catalog hits.
  • Artists must have a U.S.-based billing account, at least 1,000 monthly streams in the last 28 days in at least one target market, and a starting campaign budget of $100.

On September 13th, Spotify launched its Showcase feature in the US, a paid marketing tool that allows artists to promote their music on Spotify‘s homepage.

Showcase allows musicians to create mobile cards that serve as sponsored recommendations to entice users to explore their work, both new releases and catalog hits.

The cards would be strategically placed on the Home feed. Right there, in front of you. Tempting you with new and fresh tunes for your ears. According to Spotify’s blog post, “on average, people who see a Showcase are 6x more likely to stream the promoted release.” Spotify’s new business feature “allows [the artist] to spotlight a single, EP, or album with multiple campaigns to reach different goals, each targeting different markets or listener segments.”

There Are Certain Criteria to Meet First

To be eligible to use this tool, an artist must have:

  1. A U.S.-based billing account
  2. A minimum of 1,000 monthly streams in the last 28 days in at least one target market
  3. A campaign budget that starts at $100

The campaigns run for 10 days, or until the budget is exhausted, with costs determined on a cost-per-click (CPC) basis, starting at $0.40 per click.

For artists, especially the underground and independent ones, this Spotify business tool is valuable. It allows musicians to revive old tracks and albums and reach either a new audience, a like-minded audience, or remind users of their existence.

As ideal as it sounds, it has sparked a debate: financially secured artists vs. struggling artists. Artists signed to major record labels or are wealthy enough to fork a good enough budget, say Taylor Swift, can take advantage of the feature leaving more underground musicians, like Sonic Youth, behind. Our thoughts already get drowned out by mainstream music. A little change of scenery would be nice.

Other users find it ridiculous as the streaming giant already doesn’t pay artists. So, it’s quite ironic they are requiring payment for a feature that, by these users’ logic, should be automatically included when existing on the platform.

We, the users, also benefit from this Spotify business feature as it gives us more of what we like while breaking the routine of being stuck in a loop of the same five songs. But if abused, the feature might end up being disregarded. That’s why it is important to strike a balance between promotional content and user experience. Monitoring user feedback and making adjustments to the Showcase feature as needed would be a good start.

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