MILAN: Spotify, the streaming service, has ambitions to tap into the growing presence of audio in people’s lives and to establish a unique cultural position for itself and the brands that advertise with it.

“We can see Spotify being something at the centre of culture,” Marco Bertozzi, vice president sales Europe, told the recent IAB Interact conference in Milan.

“People react to what’s happening around them through what they listen to,” he explained. (For more, read WARC’s report: How Spotify is rethinking audio.)

So, for example, when there was a total eclipse of the sun recently, the song Total Eclipse of the Heart was played all over the world. “Because we are with them so much, we are really woven into their lives and into culture,” Bertozzi maintained.

The streaming service has sought to establish cultural relevance in other ways. “All other companies out there have the same music,” he noted, “so we focused on creating brands around the playlists.”

Those ‘brands’ include Rap Caviar in the US, Viva Latino – “which is sweeping the world as a new genre of music in terms of popularity” – and Who We Be in the UK, a big grime playlist.

This last playlist was recently played live in London, as the first date of what is to become a live tour. “We’re not doing a Spotify concert, we are doing a Who We Be concert,” Bertozzi stressed.

“We’ve done one in London and we’re about to announce the next one. And we work with advertisers who want to partner with us on those events.”

More generally, he reminded advertisers that today audio is about more than just radio. “Don’t think [just] about radio within the audio space, think about how you could do things differently.”

Sourced from WARC