In the race for listeners’ ears, Spotify is a leader of the pack. There is still plenty of room for the audio company to grow despite its already massive user base.
Figures were released recently in eMarketer’s Global Media Intelligence report and the forecast of Spotify’s future looks bright. In the last year, Spotify has added a little more than 12 million US users to their platform and that number is expected to rise exponentially in coming years. Projections from eMarketer predict that Spotify will have a little more than 76 million active users in the US by 2022.
How do the prognostications about Spotify compare with some of its competition? Quite well to be honest.
Take Pandora as an example. As a competitor of Spotify, Pandora currently boasts a much wider user-base. Last year’s figures as compiled by eMarketer showed that Pandora held 30-more million users than Spotify.
Experts say that Spotify has been able to consistently grow due to its approach to pricing incentives as well as partnerships. It has a thriving and developing paid subscription base thanks to a diverse plate of options, including plans for students and families. Spotify has also opted to partner with companies like Hulu, which holds similar goals of audience growth, to amplify its presence.
Spotify’s continued growth rests in their willingness to branch into new markets. One such avenue is podcasts, which Spotify has placed a fervent interest in in recent months.
Discoverability has been one of the podcasting industry’s biggest hurdles to overcome. As one of the major players in the audio landscape, Spotify has the resources and technology to solve this problem.
Podcasts also pose serious competition against one of terrestrial radio’s strongest assets: news and talk programming. Broadcast music stations are experiencing declines in listenership, but talk shows and news content are still capturing the attention of listeners and advertisers. With their on-demand nature, podcasts could have an edge in upending that.
Below is what Spotify CEO Daniel Ek had to say about Spotify’s ambitions to develop its influence in the podcast world, per MarketWatch.
"The vast majority of the minutes that are being spent on radio today haven't yet moved online. So our opportunity really is gigantic," Spotify CEO Daniel Ek said earlier this month. "As part of that, obviously, we think nonmusic content has a very important place."
Spotify is also eyeing greater global expansion as well. They recently secured the rights to a majority of India’s music industry, which gives them significant influence in the world’s second most-populous country.
Despite its status as the largest paid streaming service in the world, Spotify’s greatest footholds are limited only to North America, Latin America and Europe. These places account for less than one-third of the world’s population yet make up more than 90 percent of the streaming platform’s user-base according to Bloomberg. Entering India, which it plans to do at the beginning of 2019, opens up doors to new users in one of the world’s largest and rapidly rising music markets.
For now, a steady user base of nearly 60 million US users is enough to keep Spotify as one of the leaders of the streaming audio pack.