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How Spotify turns data into customer demand | Mumbrella360 video

In this session from June's Mumbrella360 conference, Spotify's global creative director Richard Frankel explains how the company is utilising its customer's data to create products such as its much-beloved Discover feature.

Ever wondered how Spotify is so good at predicting the music its users might want to listen to at any given moment? According to Richard Frankel, the global creative director of Spotify, it’s all about data.

He told the audience at the Mumbrella360 conference: “We have moved beyond demographics to reflect the person behind the device. It’s one thing to know who your audience is, and another to understand them. And when you intimately understand them, that’s when you can dynamically evolve effective marketing strategies.

“So we’re really not thinking about a single audience of 140m people, in our world we’re serving music experiences to 140m audiences of one. Every single Spotify user has a unique experience.”

The Discover feature is able to measure how much users listen to new music, and how willing they are to hear things they’ve never heard before on a daily, weekly or monthly basis to create its personalised playlists.

They also analyse the diversity of the types of music people listen to.

“That measures the range of music you’re listening to and measures things like genre and tempo,” explains Frankel. “Listening to music from a wide variety of genres makes you an eclectic, and listening just to soul music or jazz you’re a loyalist. Is this a proxy for personality? We think it might be.”

Spotify also analyses how much of a curator the listener likes to be in their own listening experience.

Frankel explains: “Think about the way you tend to listen, do you lean in, are you curating your music? Curators have the app in the foreground and are manually controlling the songs. If you just like to queue up a playlist, put the phone in your pocket and put the sound up and let it play you’re an Easy Goer.

“We’re using all of this data and some third party sources to go deep into these ideas to see if we can ratify the observations our data science teams are making about this stuff, and we’re releasing a big white paper called Understanding People Through Music which will get into it in a much deeper way.”

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