What Spotify’s Playlist Algorithm Changes Mean For Artists

What Spotify’s Playlist Algorithm Changes Mean For Artists

Spotify has announced the first major ‘algorithm’ change in their playlist ecosystem.

Written by Leni - 27 March, 2019

Spotify has announced the first major ‘algorithm’ change in their playlist ecosystem, revealing that playlists will now be curated to the individual user’s taste.

The streaming platform is already known for having some of the best personalised playlists around, automatically playing songs based on the music you like, but they’re also known for having some of the most coveted, human-curated playlists, like RapCaviar and Lo-Fi Beats.

Those playlists which have not included any personalization before, will now be part curated, part personalized. Spotify editors will still pick which songs fit on which playlist, but not every song will show up for every listener. Instead, Spotify will now serve listener’s personalized songs to better fit their music taste.

“Some playlists will now be personalized for each listener based on their particular taste. This means that for those specific playlists, no two will be the same,” the company shared in a blog post. “We know that everyone’s taste is different, and songs that one person may want to sing in the shower just might not make sense for everyone else.”

The company added that only Spotify’s own playlists are getting the personalised treatment – not those curated by third parties. It’s also focusing on ‘moods and moments’ playlists, like Beast Mode, Songs to Sing in the Shower and Guilty Pleasures.

Been listening to luvwn’s new release on repeat? You’ll now start to see more LoFi in your ‘chill’ Spotify playlist, while your housemate might have more Ambient House in theirs.

But the change isn’t just great news for listeners, it’s also an important move for artists and their teams. It means that Spotify will spread the love wider, giving artists a better chance of getting their music in the ears of the right listeners.

“The changes are an important move for everyone, but especially for record labels, who have been able to cut corners in artist development by getting unproportional audience access through big playlist adds,” says Sebastian Geels, Artist Project Manager at Amuse. “The new system means artists and labels will be forced to spend time building passionate fan bases that hold up, regardless of third party support. Labels will now get a chance to bring out the toolbox, offering more value to the artists.”

While getting your track featured on playlists is still an important strategy, it’s important to spend time building your fanbase and engaging with your community. “It’s a proven case study when you’re developing artists — you build the fans first, whether it’s the first 100, 500 or 10,000,” says Drew de Leon, artist manager and founder of The Digilogue. “Because as you’re doing that, your streams go up and you’re developing a real fan base.”

“A lot also has to do with how you interact with your fans online, whether it be commenting or responding. It’s a full length campaign and you constantly have to do it. If you’re only spending time in the studio making music, it becomes a one-sided conversation. If you’re not talking to people, you don’t have an audience to put your music out to. Artists tend to get caught up in a one-sided conversation, and they need to understand it’s a two-way street. Talk to your fans!”

Need help building your career as an independent artist? Read our guides for nailing your social media strategy, getting your music on playlists, and building your artist brand.

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