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What Is Spotify Marquee (And Is It Worth It)?

Spotify Marquee

Most people now listen to music on their mobiles or tablets, and Spotify is the top streaming music platform, so it shouldn’t come as a surprise that so many artists focus their marketing efforts on increasing their monthly listeners on Spotify.

Until now, Spotify didn’t have a tool within the app for advertising and promoting new music releases. As a result, artists and team managers had to rely on ads outside Spotify, which can be an excellent tool to attract new listeners and redirect them to your profile, by the way. But we all felt we needed something more to promote our music.

Luckily, Spotify has developed a solution with Marquee, a tool that might help you upgrade your music marketing strategy. In this article, I’ll talk about what Spotify Marquee is, how you can access it, and whether It’s worth it.

Let’s dive in!

Marquee – Spotify for Artists

Image from Spotify

Understanding Spotify Marquee

Marquee is an advertising tool that Spotify has implemented for artists, a full-screen pop-up window that appears when you open the Spotify app, and it will show a new release from an artist you have already listened to. How is this relevant? Because it means ads are targeting users who have previously interacted with, listened to, or saved your music instead of randomly targeting an audience who probably never heard of you before.

The great thing about Marquee is that it won’t seem like an intrusive advertisement on your home screen but more like a music recommendation. It’s sponsored but won’t seem like that to your fans; it’ll be more like a shout-out for new music releases. By clicking on the notification, listeners will go to your new release, so they can instantly start playing your new work. In this way, they will focus on your music and might keep streaming your tracks later on.

Marquee promises a way for an artist to engage with their fans the moment they open the app and start scrolling, deciding what to listen to, and it will target both free and premium users. As free users cannot choose a track for an album, only premium users will receive Marquees for singles. Premium listeners will have the option to turn off Marquee if they choose to. However, Spotify data indicates that these users find this new tool helpful and listen to the promoted releases.

With Spotify Marquee, you can create campaigns for your new album, EP, or single. You will need to follow some guidelines, but I’ll get into that and how to access Marquee in a moment. Before that, let’s see how it actually works.

How does Spotify Marquee work?

Marquee will help you grow your fanbase, bringing back to your profile people who listened to your songs months ago or liked one of your tracks. Listeners don’t need a specific type of plan; the only requirement is that they have already engaged with you in some way, either by streaming, saving, or following.

We could say Spotify Marquee works in three stages:

  1. Once you set your campaign, it can run up to 18 days after the release. During that time, listeners who have streamed your music will be prompted with a notification when they open the app. This tool will get the attention of Spotify users so they take action.
  2. Each time a listener clicks on the ad, it will count as a conversion, and Spotify will keep track of this and every stream followed by the Marquee.
  3. Finally, Spotify will track your fans’ engagement after clicking a Marquee so that you can create new strategies based on those results.

What Marquee offers is ads within Spotify, targeted in tailored in such a way that people are more willing to click to listen to your music.

How to start using Spotify Marquee

Marquee is still in beta version, available only to US-based artists and teams.

To be eligible to promote your new music releases, you need more than 2.5k followers or at least 15k streams over the last 28 days in the following markets, which are the only available for now: Argentina, Australia, Austria, Brazil, Canada, France, Germany, Ireland, Liechtenstein, Monaco, New Zealand, Switzerland, United Kingdom, and the United States. You’ll see your releases on your Campaign tab if you are eligible for Marquee.

There are some other restrictions for Marquee:

  • You can only select new releases. If you’re promoting an album, 50% of the songs need to be new releases on Spotify. It means if you previously released three singles from a five songs EP, you won’t be able to use Marquee for that release.
  • You can only create one campaign per release and market, beginning within 21 days of the release date.
  • Remixes, karaoke version, remaster, re-recordings, or compilations are not eligible to promote with Marquee.
  • Your name must be the main artist’s name, and you can’t have a generic name describing your content or genre.
  • You cannot create a campaign for a release with more than three main artists.
  • The Marquee must be created by an artist or label team with the rights for the US release.

How to create a Marquee campaign

Only artist team members with admin and editor access levels can create a Marquee campaign. While the admin can add cards and review history, the editor will only see limited billing details. Team members who are viewers won’t have access to Marquee, so make sure you contact your team admin to get access to Marquee if you’ll be creating the campaigns.

Create your Marquee campaigns from your Spotify for Artists dashboard and head to Campaigns. From there, you can see your releases. If you can’t see your releases, ensure you are eligible to create a campaign, having the streams and followers needed for at least one market.

Choose the release you want to promote and click on Create Campaign. Remember, you can only create one Marquee campaign per release and targeted market. If you wanted to target Brazil, the United States, and the UK, you would need to do one Marquee campaign for each country.

Select the target country, and then you’ll see a preview of your Marquee, auto-generated with your album artwork and a matched background (you cannot change it). You also get a targeting overview with the available reach and the cost per click. The price per click will vary per market, and the audience reach will depend on your presence in those markets.

Then you can set the campaign start date, which will be active for ten days or until you spend all your budget, whichever comes first.

The next thing you need to choose is your targeted audience.

Types of audience

Your core audience is what Spotify calls a Reachable Audience: the group of people Marquee is targeting with your campaign. These listeners may follow you, have streamed your music, or shown some interest in your work and are more likely to click on your Marquee, thus making your campaign more effective.

Segmentation occurs when you want to target a specific audience, and this can be as follows:

  • Recently interested listeners: Those who intentionally have searched and streamed your music in the last 28 days.
  • Casual listeners: Users who searched and streamed your music in the last six months but less than your most engaged listeners.
  • Lapsed listeners: Those who haven’t searched and streamed your music in the last six months but have previously done so.

These listeners deliberately sought your music in the past. It doesn’t matter if they played your music from an editorial or personalized playlist like Discover, Radio, Weekly, or similar. Your most engaged listeners are within your reachable audience, so if you want to target them, you don’t need to do segmentation.

Prepare your budget

The last step to launching your campaign is to set a budget limit. The minimum is $250, and the maximum is $10,000. You choose the amount at the beginning and can’t change it once the campaign starts running.

You will only be charged for the clicks your Marquee receives, so you may not spend all your budget. However, the price will be affected by the targeted market and audience. I’d recommend checking the targeting overview for more accurate pricing and a prediction for your total spending.

You can change your budget amount up until one day before your Marquee campaign starts running. After that, if you want to make any changes, you must stop the campaign and rerun it. So be careful when choosing your budget, and ensure you review your campaign before it’s submitted.

Your stats will start showing after 24 hours and will be updated for the duration of the campaign.

What to expect with Spotify Marquee

According to Spotify analytics, there is around 15% more conversion using Marquee. It means the people who see a Marquee are more likely to click on it and stream the promoted release. But that’s not all: those users might also listen to the rest of your music by exploring your artist page and become part of your loyal fanbase.

Using Marquee campaigns, you can expect:

  • More streams for your releases and from the rest of your catalogue.
  • More saves for your tracks.
  • You can get added to more playlists.
  • More monthly listeners.
  • More engaged listeners who will keep streaming your music.

You can read about artists who have increased their fanbase only using Marquee campaigns, such as DRAMA, where 25% of their listeners saved and playlisted one song from the album “Dance Without Me” that they promoted using Marquee.

Or Mt. Joy, who used segmentation to target casual and lapsed listeners, where 18% of the targeted audience streamed the album, and 14% of lapsed listeners saved or playlisted at least one song from the album.

Spotify Marquee VS playlist pitching VS off-platform ads

Before Spotify Marquee, artists used off-platform ads, the most common being Facebook ads or pitching to a playlist editor for a spot on the top playlists.

I’m sure you’ve seen music ads on Facebook. The problem with this kind of ad is that:

  • They target new listeners, so people who most likely have no idea who you are.
  • Usually, these ads direct you to your smart link page, which leads you to Spotify to sign in and your destination page. Some people will stop before reaching our Spotify page.
  • People can click the ads but won’t stream your song, giving a reasonable click rate but not a stream rate or other types of engagement, which is our final goal.

But Facebook ads have advantages too. Reaching listeners who haven’t heard your music before can generate new fans. Of course, they have to like what they hear first.

Many artists are starting to use Facebook ads to attract new listeners and Marquee to retarget already-engaged audiences. That way, they can keep growing their fanbase.

As for playlist pitching, being added to them could be an excellent way to get new followers and keep them coming back with Marquee campaigns.

Is Spotify Marquee worth it?

Marquee has proven to be very effective thanks to its carefully-targeted approach. There are many things I’d love to see in the future, like being able to create Marquee campaigns from outside of the United States and to audiences in different countries.

Pros

  • Marquee does not feel like ads to Premium users.
  • Target based on listening history and not demographic and interest.
  • It’s a promotion within Spotify, so everything happens inside the platform.
  • Users don’t have to stop what they’re doing; they’re already searching for something to listen to.
  • Better chances to get your music streamed.
  • You get accurate Spotify analytics.
  • Effective targeting.

Cons

  • Still have a limited market.
  • The US-only billing-team requirement.
  • It can be more expensive than off-platforms ads.
  • Marquee is only for stream promotion; you can’t use it for show tickets, merch, or physical releases

Final thoughts

While it can still improve, and I hope it’ll be available worldwide soon, Spotify Marquee is an excellent option to grow your fanbase.

However, I have a feeling that when it does become available for more artists, it will start to feel like advertising, and Premium users won’t be happy about it. We don’t like all the music we stream, especially since Spotify considers a single stream a song you listened to for at least 30 seconds.

We’re left to wait for what Spotify decides to do next.

Meanwhile, if you are eligible, I suggest you try it out. You can run one campaign and see how it goes or combine diverse strategies to diversify your target.

Good luck, and stay creative!

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