3 ways streaming on Spotify has shifted

by The Ad Studio Team

Daily routines have been turned upside down as people around the world stay home and practice social distancing. On Spotify, we’re seeing people turn to music and podcasts to stay informed, stay connected, and stay grounded.

We’ve talked about the best ways to be heard in the moment, but now that those moments are taking new shape, listener streaming behavior has shifted as well. We want to help you understand how people are listening now, so you can adapt your advertising plans and continue to connect with your target audience. Here’s what we learned based on global listening from Spotify’s ad-supported and Premium listeners from March 19 to 25.

Listening at home takes new shape — but context still matters

As more people are working and learning remotely, we’ve seen a major shift to streaming from home and less streaming while commuting. While in-car streaming is trending downward, listening on devices like computer desktops and gaming consoles is on the rise.

Even as listening takes place under one roof, context is still important to keep in mind. Make sure the targeting you choose makes sense to daily life right now. As always, if you tap into specific moments with real-time context targeting, like when people are focusing or cooking, your ad should feel relevant to the activity at hand and makes sense to hear while people are social distancing. Delivering the right message at the right moment is as important as ever — especially as those moments move to the home.

Overall wellness is the priority

Last year, we reported on why audio is such a key ingredient for peoples’ workouts. We found that motivation is the number-one reason people stream while exercising, along with “to relax” and “to set a certain mood.”¹ These reasons ring truer than ever for listeners globally, as health and wellness take priority right now.

In the past few weeks, more people have been listening to podcasts in the Health & Fitness and Lifestyle & Health categories, and have been creating more of their own workout playlists, too. When it comes to playlists, listeners are creating and following more workout playlists than they were a month ago, and streams of running, yoga, nature sounds, and meditation playlists are up.

If it makes sense for your business, think about how your messaging can motivate listeners or help them with their wellness goals. Consider using interest targeting for Health & Lifestyle or Fitness to reach people who this type of messaging would likely resonate with.

Listeners are unwinding with “chill” music

“Chill” tracks are also seeing more rotation in listeners’ playlists, meaning songs that are more acoustic, less danceable, and have lower energy than songs previously added, with more focus on instrumentals rather than vocals.

Businesses can — and should — take cues from listeners’ shift to chill. Focus on audio experiences that match the tone of the moment, without disrupting the experience. If you’ve opted for loud effects and energetic beats in the past, now’s the time to explore calmer sounds, inspired by nature and ambient tracks. Our Chill shelf will help you understand what that sounds like.

Overall, the rhythm of daily life is shifting. People are turning to music and podcasts to enhance their time spent at home, using audio to connect with their friends, families, favorite artists, and shows — and a sense of inner calm.

  1. 1Crowd DNA & Spotify, Seize The Moments survey among 800 US Spotify users 18-44, April 2019