Spotify and the Long Tail Effect

The music world has changed dramatically over the years, but this isn’t because we listen to music differently, it’s because of the way that we encounter music. With streaming services like Spotify, we can access music anywhere, and find almost any song. But it isn’t the music content itself that is valuable, its everything around it. It’s the self-promotion that comes from its accessibility and findability where Spotify filters, aggregates and sorts through music to deliver new playlists of songs that would be otherwise unknown.

This findability and accessibility opens a new gate to where the money flows–live shows, merchandise and festivals. The songs themselves are just snippets of self-promotion that if found by an audience can land artists a spot at the next Splendour in the Grass.

This is because the nature of todays internet allows for songs to be easily copied, torrented and streamed for only one tenth of a cent which means that the artist makes little to no money.

By listening to their songs, we advertise artists to promoters who can take them to the next step in their career. It turns out that I found Years & Years, Banks and Galantis before majority of Spotify users did. Here I am 2 years later, and i’ve seen two of these three artists play live sets at two separate festivals!

What would our world look like today if we didn’t have services like Spotify? Would our music scene be the same?

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4 thoughts on “Spotify and the Long Tail Effect”

  1. Really good blog post about the long tail effect! Really loved how you made a YouTube video to accompany your blog post, you explained everything really well. It was good that you gave background information about Spotify and explained how it works and why people love it! I also didn’t know about ‘EcoNest’ at all so that was very interesting to hear about. It would’ve been good if you compared Spotify to another music platform like Apple Music and how the they differentiate from each other, check out this link comparing them both! https://www.cnet.com/au/news/apple-music-vs-spotify-whats-the-difference/ , but overall I really loved reading your blog post and checking out the video! And to answer your question, if we didn’t have Spotify I honestly don’t think I would have a ‘good’ taste in music! I love Spotify and the recommendations are amazing!

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  2. I like your point, it is hard to be a music producer these day, as everything is free over the internet less artist got paid for their work but in the other hand some of them are just getting bigger because of the mass audience they had online. I seen this as popularity over skill anyway overall good blog.

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  3. Hi! Your explanation of the long tail effect in your video and the problem of companies and their space limit was great, thank you for that. Using a YouTube video for your blog post was a great idea because it explained everything well and allowed you to dive into more detail. I also love Spotify and the discover playlist because as you said it allows us to find new music, so adding this as your example of the long tail effect was a great idea. Overall I really love your post and your points!

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