Is Spotify Plotting a Largescale Push Into Short-Form Video? Job Postings Suggest Possible UGC Buildout

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Is Spotify spearheading an aggressive expansion into short-form video? New job postings are raising questions about behind-the-scenes projects. Photo Credit: Reet Talreja

With Spotify zeroing in on “new promotional and social features” as part of its expanded Universal Music partnership – and as TikTok faces an uncertain future in the U.S. – is the streaming platform plotting a short-form buildout?

That question has emerged due to several new job postings from Spotify, which isn’t a stranger to the short-form format. The service has been experimenting with Canvas for some time, and brief promotional clips (which loop and feature a swipe-up option) are playing an increasingly large role on Spotify’s mobile app.

At the intersection of that point and the mentioned UMG tie-up, Interscope-signed Billie Eilish only recently put out a concise video (and a corresponding release-countdown page) via Spotify plugging her upcoming Hit Me Hard and Soft. A similar clip arrived on Shorts, but TikTokers had to settle for a shorter, music-light upload recorded by Eilish herself as opposed to a crew.

Against this backdrop, and with TikTok still staring down the possibility of a U.S. ban, is short-form video set to factor even more prominently into Spotify?

Admittedly, there isn’t a concrete answer to the question, let alone a formal announcement from the company. But the highlighted job listings, the first for a global senior manager of experiential and content production, are providing noteworthy information on this front.

Based in the States but requiring “significant travel” domestically and abroad, the senior manager position involves producing “live experiences (concerts, performances, events, experiential installations) for Spotify, artists, and/or brand partners for audiences of fans, industry, influencers, and press,” per the appropriate description.

Pulling down a base salary of between $133,647 and $175,000, the selected candidate will provide assistance with “the planning, production, and execution of” these Spotify live events and should possess “an understanding of artist needs and the artist booking process,” the text shows.

Perhaps most telling of all, the position expressly requires one to “know how to build brand experiences and produce short form content.”

Expanding on the information – which is, of course, also interesting when it comes to Spotify’s live-event ambitions – another posting is advertising a platform liability operations manager role.

Taking home a healthy $107,766 to $151,750 base salary, that New York City-based professional will ensure “Spotify’s offerings are crafted, built and maintained in a way that follows applicable content-related safety obligations around the world.”

“You have at least 5+ years of experience in and interest in legal issues relating to online safe harbors and content moderation,” reads one of the post’s requirements.

Though those details could possibly relate to AI music uploads, which have exploded in popularity, the text emphasizes that the employee will “offer strategic advice to different teams around safety-regulatory implications of demonstrating user-generated content, primarily around new content formats.”

Needless to say, AI-created music doesn’t appear to constitute a new content format or UGC. Meanwhile, Spotify, which just laid off close to one-fifth of its team in December and is in general prioritizing cost reductions, is looking to bring on an associate director of executive content social strategy as well.

The person who fills that impressively titled role will “support thought-leadership strategy and content creation on behalf of a key leader,” besides developing “an editorial program that supports the executive’s digital persona across multiple social media platforms.”

This “key leader” isn’t named in the text, but it’s worth noting that CEO Daniel Ek is decidedly active on Twitter/X and, more than that, is widely known as the face of the business. Adding another social platform into the mix may fuel a need for assistance in this department.

Finally, Spotify is also in the process of hiring a Los Angeles-based business affairs director for studio content. Boasting the largest base salary ($199,413 to $284,875) of the described positions, said director “will structure and negotiate various types of content/creator/talent-related deals with talent representatives, studios, production companies, and content creators/owners related to talk/video content.”

That includes “negotiating the material commercial terms of high-level creator/talent services, rights, and content production/licensing/distribution deals,” the text spells out.

Notwithstanding Spotify’s effort to scale back content spending – the company axed all manner of original podcasts last year – it’s hardly a stretch to say that this text suggests further deals, presumably in or around the podcast arena, might be on the way. Bigger picture, while the platform’s precise plans (regarding short-form media, live events, and more) remain to be seen, evidence indicates that something significant could be in the works.