Marketing Lessons From Spotify

Thursday, August 18th, 2011


So a few weeks ago a wonderful new music service from Europe landed in the good ole’ USA called Spotify.  Since that evil corporation Apple killed Lala I had really missed the access to everything my heart desired musically.  Now thanks to I am back to discovering bands daily.  As an online marketer I wanted to share the lessons of Spotify and how it has helped changed the way we consume music.  Perhaps more importantly the online marketing lessons you can pull away from this hyper-cool ultra-amazing style of music service.

Lesson 1 – Limit Invites

Upon launch in the US, Spotify limited the amount of invitations they spread throughout the country.  This is similar to the Google+ launch and many new web services.  This limited launch creates demand and buzz by producing an exclusive velvet rope style atmosphere.  Is it impossible to get an invite? – nope, but people love to have something that they are told that they cannot have.

Lesson 2 – Make it free and they will pay for more

Spotify allows you to sign up and get 20 hours of music a month for free.  This sample idea has been proven for years in supermarkets across the country.  Bringing the “offer a taste” idea online isn’t new – but it’s just as effective.

Lesson 3 – Update your content with the latest and greatest

The beauty of spotify is not their massive back catalog of music, but their up-to-date new catalog packed with everything that is just released.  If you want traffic to your web portal then pack your site with new content.

Lesson 4 – Keep it simple and it will flourish

The Spotify interface is so basic that it requires no start-up time and the learning curve is null.  Keep your campaigns and websites simple and easy-to-use and your marketing and site will go far.

Lesson 5 – Socialized!

When I run out of music ideas Spotify connects me to my Facebook friends who also subscribe to the service.   It allows me to see what they are listening to as well as email them recommendations.  Whenever possible connect social media to your campaigns and websites.  It’s so easy to add like, share or tweet buttons to any email campaign or web page and the payoff is huge.  You may double your page views just by sharing something with your network of friends.

One of the best new discoveries I made in the past week on Spotify is a band from Brooklyn called Country Mice.  To my luck they played their first show this past week in Philadelphia.  Peep the video below to see and hear their brand of Rock filled with plenty of harmonies, distortion and heart.  Don’t forget the lessons of Spotify. 

Country Mice Video Here

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49 Responses to “Marketing Lessons From Spotify”

  1. Jess Powell says:

    Think people are going to get weary of the exclusive invite strategy? Not to be a negative Nelly, but I already am.

    I definitely did notice when Spotify hit the streets here in the U.S. – but it felt very copycat since Google+ ran a exclusivity campaign weeks before.

    Great article though – breaking it down. Just thought I’d pose the question.

  2. jkrolick says:

    Jess – love the thoughts – glad you added them. Here’s my take:

    The folks driving the interweb are just applying the lessons learned from physical events – think bar/club launches, restuarant openings, movie premieres, art galleries.

    Most if not all of those do a launch night or red carpet event or host a kick off party which are almost always invititation only. this stratagy has worked and even if it is being a little eliteist of them – it continues to create buzz.

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