Building a bigger funnel to help artists grow on Spotify



Spotify had a problem but its solution was obscured and hidden. The problem was a stubbornly negative perception among independent artists that the platform cared only about the big acts. The solution was to develop a robust artist dashboard called “Spotify for Artists” that offered a suite of services to help artists monetize their audience and develop a livelihood out of their art. The good news is that the “S4A" works and it helps thousands of artists; the bad news is that there are thousands of artists who do not know how to use the dashboard and why how it can help them.

Our research and design exploration helped us identify the two main types of content that could convert their target audience. One of those content formats is inspirational stories that demonstrate how similar artists (not the big names) were able to flourish and grow on Spotify. These stories revealed a variety of tools and promotional channels that de-mystified the entire platform, turning it from a player to listen to music, into a tool that can generate revenue. The other type of content was strict, utilitarian information. The Spotify team had enough user data to know what FAQ questions mattered the most to this audience. Our job was to deliver that information as efficiently as possible.

The result? A new design standard for content that is propagating throughout the Spotify ecosystem. The “S4A” FAQ design treatment is defining the way Spotify delivers utility and our premier content design system is defining the way evocative stories are told. Perception of what Spotify can do is also changing; enrollment among independent artists has grown and the Code and Theory designs are being leveraged in other channels in the Spotify ecosystem.

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Designing For Two Content Types

The design system augmented the natural differences between FAQ type utility with evocative, inspirational content. Both types of content were then deployed on the platform to reassure recalcitrant artists that this platform would help them generate revenue.

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Enhancing the Lowly FAQ

The lowly utility content was given a sturdy makeover on the platform. All of the FAQ content was atomized and tagged for enhanced analytics and packaged in a way to reassure visitors that the platform works and is ready to help them if they run into problems.

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