Spotify Wants This $10 Million Ad Campaign to Take Them Mainstream…

6 million subscribers worldwide, 1-point-something million in the US? That’s what Wall Street calls ‘niche,’ especially against heavyweights like Sirius XM Radio and Netflix, both of whom boast more than 20 million subscribers apiece (in the US alone).  And of course, Apple, whose iTunes is sitting on more than 400 million credit card accounts.

This is a situation Spotify and its investors want to change as quickly as possible, which brings us to an aggressive TV ad campaign that starts tonight.  The spots will start on The Voice before spreading to other networks, with a broader buy estimated at $10 million.  “The goal is to reach a broad mainstream audience,” Spotify rep Graham James told Digital Music News this morning.

The campaign will not only traverse mainstream television across various networks, but also across online/social channels.

Spot #1.

Spot #2.

Spot #3.

23 Responses

  1. A-J Charron

    Considering what little amount Spotify pays out to the artists, I hope this doesn’t work. Remember; the major labels are behind this; this is what they’ve been working on.

  2. HansH

    Music makes us scream coocoo cachoo? Well as long as “I am the Walrus” is not on Spotify….

  3. Erik

    I was pretty unimpressed with these ads and Spotify desperately needs something to break through. Especially if 2/3rds of the Us doesn’t even know what Spotify is. Cool image of crowd surfing but the other two were lame. Music didn’t grab me and it felt a bit too much like an “American Express” ad for me. I don’t see this turning heads, in all honesty. They need to do better.

    • Vipul Sharma

      I agree, Erik.
      The primary issue facing Spotify with regards to customer acquisition (in the US, at least) appears to be that the majority of the population does not know what Spotify is.
      None of these three commercials appears to offer even the slightest hint that Spotify is a streaming music service that (legally) offers on-demand access to a large catalog of music.
      That, and these commercials are pretty unimpressive.
      Contrast, for example, with the Capital One (Alec Baldwin & Charles Barkley) and AT&T commercials running non-stop during March Madness…

  4. David_F

    Im no advertising expert but those are horrible.
    Might as well just have had an image of Daniel Ek midair over a shark.

  5. mdti

    I don’t get it; who is dancing like a douche tonight ? (in the 3rd add).
    And in the unvoluntary humor (is it unvoluntary), I invite the French literates to concentrate on the last images of the third ad and to continue to laugh… always find a new beat (y a toujours moyen de trouver une nouvelle b*te??) ? 🙂

  6. Jon Lee

    was wondering when this was going to happen. the utilitarian product need side was established, but there had been very little emotional based marketing communication about what spotify is about!

    • R.P.

      timing is everything and the world wasn’t ready back then.
      They do say that: Past performance is no guarantee of future results? Don’t they?

  7. Yves Villeneuve

    These ads don’t make me want to spend $10 or $5 per month. I consider myself part of the mainstream aware of Spotify and its pricing policies.

  8. Yves Villeneuve

    Moreover, consumers that normally spend $5 or $10 per month on music are likely already aware of Spotify.
    My guess is these ads are a waste of money, possibly intended to generate more venture capital investments in their niche money-losing company.
    Are there still people in the dark?

  9. Yves Villeneuve

    Lastly, mainstream music fans, average or ardent, are not interested in searching and managing an unlimited library even if free. We prefer our free radio, if not watching TV/movies, playing games or reading books.
    Spotify ads might be better served on radio.

  10. R.P.

    i know plenty of artists that would love a niche base of that size.

    • Paul Resnikoff

      Artists? Sure, of course.
      Something you and I created in a garage, bootstrapped? Let’s pop the champagne.
      But companies with ~$280 mililon invested, including IPO-hungry backers like Goldman Sachs (not to mention major labels w/ ownership shares)? 6 million isn’t nearly enough for that crowd. These guys need billions in returns (plural) or it’s a failure for them.

  11. Clintone


    • Adam Smith

      I already boycott spotify, and talk shit about them whenever possible. Why? Because the SUCK for artists. ’nuff said.

  12. Avery H

    Maybe it’s just me, but I think these spots could use some better music. Though, it does seem like they didn’t spend any money on licensing any of the traks you might find on Spotify…..

  13. TUN

    Spotyfiy will make music industry revenues verrry spottty – this entity is a NAPSTER in portable and improved form. With little bit of endorsment from Facebook original Napster founder convinced the labels to eat this poison pill.
    With todays discovery statistics (over 75% on the radio and TV)
    Mandatory Shazam purchase at 29 cents a tune is the only answer to profitable music industry. Shazam, Gracenote, Soundhound and liryc ID services have over billion active users and should be converted to money machines. With over billion users and tune at mundatory $.29 you will have 100 billion dollar industry in 18 months. As it is all of those guys are at service to pirates: one song sales at $1.29 and (counting lirycs) 50 IDs goes as a free service to pirates.


      …..and than of course….. we need Vevo and Youtube so Universal boys can socialize with Google guys.
      Yes!!! Lets give up 20 billion in annual sales for some “champagne and caviar time”