At the end of the year, Spotify always offers us an overview of the music we played over the last twelve months. The service is called Spotify Wrapped, and it’s been a sensation among users that each year are waiting to see what’s in their Spotify Wrapped this time.

Spotify Wrapped is a marketing tool launched by Spotify to promote the streaming platform. When Spotify Wrapped comes out, users can share their top-ranked artists and songs on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram stories, and almost any social media platform.

Thanks to its users, Spotify can reach non-Spotify users and attract them to the platform thanks to this unique feature. And it’s definitely working since many users have claimed they started using Spotify because of a Spotify Wrapped the saw online.

Let’s take a look at this feature and see how you can use it to promote your music.

How does Spotify Wrapped work?

Spotify Wrapped tracks users listening behavior during the year, specifically from January to October 31. At that time, Spotify counts every stream of a song, artists, and podcasts. For each stream to count towards your top, you must listen to at least the first 30 seconds of each track.

The artists you’ve been streaming the most will be your top artists, defined by how many songs you have streamed from them. It means that if you listen to three 1-minute songs of an artist and one 11-minute song from a different artist, the 1-minute song artist will be top because you listen to three songs, even if you spent more time listening to the other artist when considering the minutes.

In the beginning, Spotify Wrapped only showed the top artists, top songs, and the total minutes played on Spotify. As years went by, it added new features such as a stories format, similar to Instagram, stats from your most listened podcasts, personalized playlists, and even quizzes.

Spotify Wrapped gets released around the first week of December, so all the activity from November and December is not included in this feature.

For artists, Spotify Wrapped is available by logging in to your Spotify for Artist. You can see data on how many hours your music was streamed, the total of listeners and streams in the current year, the increase of followers, and how many playlists featured your music in that period.

Like fans, as an artist, you can also share your year’s milestones with Spotify on your social media to thank your fans for their support. Some artists ask their followers to tag them in their stories, creating a close interaction between artists and fans.

In 2021 Spotify teamed with Shopify to allow artists to add merch to their artist profile, and it was also promoted during Spotify Wrapped that year.

Spotify Wrapped can provide valuable insights into your music and your growth as an artist. That is one of the reasons Spotify Wrapped has been so popular, as it offers a personal experience for both fans and artists.

How to prepare as an artist for Spotify Wrapped

In November, once Spotify stopped collecting data from listeners and before releasing the Spotify Wrapped worldwide, you should take a few actions to prepare for the campaign’s release.

For this year, Spotify has created a Wrapped Soundcheck for artists with a series of actions to complete to fully prepare for Spotify Wrapped and engage with your fans on many levels. If you still need to work on your artist’s page, this is the time to do it!

November is when you need to get ready for Spotify Wrapped, so make sure you won’t miss the deadline next year!

Refresh your Artist’s page

Having your Artist’s page up to date is one of the things you can do during the year to have it ready when Spotify Wrapped finally arrives at the end of the year. During November, update whatever needs to be updated.

If you had a new session photo for your last release, add the new photo to match the current album you’re promoting.

Take time to read your bio and add recent achievements or remove anything that does not align with your creative brand anymore.

Set your Artist’s pick with your latest release or a playlist with all your music to greet users who are driven to your profile from a Spotify Wrapped they see on social media.

Add the lyrics of your songs to Musixmatch and release them on all streaming platforms. Allow your fans to sing their favorite songs without leaving the platform.

Thank your most engaged fans with a video

One of the latest inclusions on Spotify Wrapped was the video message from artists to their top fans. A personalized video will play only to the users who listened to you the most this year. Use it to thank your fans directly for their support this year or hint about future releases to keep them engaged in the following year. Be creative but keep it short.

The video should be under 30 seconds in a vertical format. You can record it using your mobile phone or another device, ensuring the final output is vertically oriented to be played in the mobile app.

Upload your video using the Spotify for Artist mobile app or the desktop website. The video should have been uploaded by November 23 to be featured on this year’s Spotify Wrapped. If you missed the deadline, you could still greet your fans on social media and be ready next year.

When recording your video, ensure there is no background music, lyrics, brand logos, or graphics, and comply with Spotify’s rules about content.

Get your merch ready

When Spotify partnered with Shopify, it allowed artists to sell their merch from Spotify. For many artists, merch is their most substantial source of income from their music. It’s also a way to give your fans unique items to make them part of your family. The possibility to showcase your merch on the streaming platform has been an enormous change and has brought many opportunities for artists who depend on merch sales.

You can link your Shopify store from Spotify for Artists and add the exclusive items you create for your fans. You can publish up to 250 items on Spotify, such as CDs, Vinyls, T-shirts, hoodies, and any article you make, and that is available on your Shopify store. Once linked to your Shopify store, you can select three pieces to feature on your Artist’s page.

When Spotify Wrapped releases this year, your top fans will receive an email about your new merch. If you want new merch available for Spotify Wrapped, make sure it’s ready by November next year. This year Spotify set November 7 as a deadline to refresh your Shopify store.

If you don’t have a Shopify store, Shopify offers many plans to fit your needs. You could use the free trial or go directly to their Starter plan for $5 monthly, perfect for setting up your store and selling from Spotify.

Spotify also offers a discount code from Printful to create merch if you need something to sell immediately. Using the code SPOTIFY20 at checkout before December 31, 2022, will get you $20 off your first order.

Even if you don’t want to have merch on your Spotify Wrapped, setting up your Shopify store will allow your most engaged fans to buy merch throughout the year.

List your tour dates on your profile.

If you’re touring or will start soon, add your upcoming shows on Spotify so they are recommended to your fans in their Wrapped. You can use your tour dates in your video message to announce where you’ll be playing and celebrate that milestone, especially if you’re going to cities where people are streaming your music.

Setting up your tour dates on your Artist’s profile is easy. But first, you need to list them on one of Spotify’s ticketing partner sites like Ticketmaster, Songkick, Eventbrite, and others. You can see the list of partner sites on Spotify for Artists’ help.

You can list tours, virtual events, and festivals. Then ask your fans to follow you to be notified when new dates are announced.

When Spotify Wrapped is out, Spotify will promote your tour dates. However, I’d recommend regularly updating during the year.

Set up a Fan Support campaign

Thanks to the Fan Support feature, you can use it to ask your fans to support you or your team, to help another fellow musician, or to fundraise for an organization or any causes you advocate.

Fan Support is another feature you can run throughout the year, but you can set specific fundraising for the holidays during Spotify Wrapped. If your band is known for supporting charity, you can ask your fans to join you and support a common goal.

Create your Fan Support link in Spotify for Artists to start receiving funds; they will be collected by a third-party partner such as PayPal, GoFundMe, Cash App, and more. Spotify will not collect any fees from your transactions.

For a complete list of the partners’ platforms available for your country, check this Fan Support Best Practices article and the Fan Support Policies to ensure your profile is allowed to use the Fan Support feature.

Don’t just wait for Spotify Wrapped!

Although Spotify Wrapped is an excellent opportunity to promote the platform and your music, you should promote your music for the whole year. If no one streams your music in the first place, you won’t be featured in Spotify Wrapped, and refreshing your artist’s page, merch, and tour dates won’t have an impact if you do it last minute. So here are some suggestions to promote your music in 2023.

Be active on Spotify.

Be different from those artists who run pre-save and ad campaigns before the release of their new singles and then forget about promotion and uploading new music for the rest of the year. Keep your profile active and run several ad campaigns during the year to gain more followers and streams daily. Schedule releases during the year so you can make a good marketing strategy plan.

Keep an eye on your Artist’s page. Make it easy for new listeners to find and stream your latest releases and navigate your library. Remember to add a link to all your active social media platforms.

Engage with your fans online

You don’t need to wait until Wrapped to record yourself thanking your fans for their support. With many tools available, such as Instagram and Facebook live, you can create an event for each release and talk about your writing process, future releases, or any news you want to deliver.

Fans have never been as close to their favorite artists as they are today with all the social media tools we have available. Many artists use these tools to create monthly virtual hangouts to meet and engage with their fans.

For all of you who missed the deadline to upload the video message for Wrapped, don’t let it stop you. You can still record and upload the video to your social media accounts.

Grow your audience

When you start uploading music on Spotify, promoting it, and engaging with your fans online, your audience will start growing. Work on increasing your monthly listeners and Spotify streams, but remember to keep creating music. Promotion can be challenging when you’re just starting on your own; going one step at a time is OK.

Final thoughts

I hope this article helped you understand how Spotify Wrapped works and provided you with tips to make the most of it as an artist. Follow this guide for next year’s Spotify Wrapped, and make sure you promote your music throughout 2023.

Good luck, and stay creative!