Tony Vitti, Music Strategist, Advisor and Marketer
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The Smokescreen of Spotify And Giving Credit To Producers and Songwriters

February 7, 2018

Spotify has made it public : they will credit the producers and the songwriters of the songs you stream, but what does it mean anyway?

Everyday, I have artists and bands coming up my way with their Spotify story and how they can crush it with it, and as a Music Strategist, Adviser and Marketer, it’s my duty to inform them on what Spotify really is. But mostly, how to use it properly.

By the way, I am pretty shocked about this precise matter : artists have such a mis-conception of Spotify and that’s pretty odd because it is very simple.

Let me explain this for a second, and if you are reading this as an artist who think they know it all, consider putting your ego on the side to actually read these lines, you will change the game.

Spotify is a streaming platform where people listen to your music. At no moment, was it really designed to actually pay the artists. Spotify has been designed to be the storefront of your playlist, and nothing more.

That being said, that’s where I like to tackle the artists who think Spotify is THE modern way to earn money with their music. We talked about this previously, artists will no longer make money out of their music. Indeed, at $0.003 a stream, before tax, before cut and before distribution fees, how can you even bank on being wealthy with Spotify?

That is a waste of time and energy to focus on Spotify that way. Actually, that’s not even knowing the rules of the game you play.

That’s like playing a UNO game and trying to collect the red cards. Ok you will have some cards to play, but the goal is to have no cards anymore.

Being on Spotify and reaching for the money is also playing the game with the wrong goal. Spotify needs to be used the right way and especially while building your personal brand.

So here is why we are in a total smokescreen with this announcement: Spotify is a platform for people to listen to Music, therefore crediting Producers and Songwriters, at the base level has no interest to the end customer. On a social base, if the platform was targeted towards Music Business and Industry, this would have more sens because the market would be designed that way. But here, nobody will, in fact, really care about that.

Secondly, Producers and Songwriters are not being paid by Spotify. Where in fact, that would be the right thing to rejoice for because Spotify is not designed for Producers and Songwriters, it is designed for the final artist, the performer, and therefore, in that case, the platform would be interesting for the Producer and Songwriter because those are two “background” jobs and since they work with a lot of artists in their career, the total of streams is neatly more consequent, so more money (on the paper).

So here, once again, they are fighting the wrong game. Once again, Producers and Songwriters are complaining about an issue that in fact doesn’t matter at all instead of focusing on their craft and building their personal brand.

In the Music Industry, blaming the Market is always a thing, but here, they need to stop applauding dumb changes that in fact should be natively made. It’s like if we were all buying cars without the engine and years later the companies that sell the cars say “Hey, now you have an engine in the car when you buy it!” and we would rejoice about it while it should be there since the beginning and we should have all focused on buying a bike to go further instead of contemplating forever the need for a change.

Big corporation are very good at making announcements that in fact are like a shot in the dark. Producers, Songwriters, the artists you write for are not making money on Spotify because they do no know how to use it and/or to brand themselves, therefore you won’t make more money or have more recognition for your craft. Fight the real problems and truly work with artists to make sure this doesn’t become the normality.

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