The Pros and Cons of Spotify For Artists and Fans

Whoever you are, if you have access to the internet, free music streaming will give you access to practically any track you like. Whether that is from the twelfth century or from somewhere as unlikely as Nepal. However, for us musicians in the main-stream, it has mixed blessings. This is because, on the one hand, you are practically giving away some of those tracks that you shed blood, sweat and tears over. However, if you do your job properly, you will still find some monetary reward. This post looks at the pros and cons of Spotify for artists and fans.

The Pros of Spotify For Artists…

Spotify provides a regular income for many artists. However, this still fluctuates so artists don’t know how much they will eventually get once they have paid taxes, etc. It always used to be that 80,000 monthly streams were equal to the minimum wage. This in itself, is one of the cons of Spotify for artists. The reason I am including it here is that Spotify is still happy to pay the artists something – even if it is peanuts. However, that figure has now gone up to more like 100,000 streams. For many artists, that is a pipe dream. There are strategies that you can use to get this number of streams. As expected, the easiest and most powerful methods are paid. What is the point of paying to be paid? Well, people are not going to know that you exist unless you make a stand.

If someone likes your music, they will go on listening to it after your paid promotion. It is like throwing mud at a wall. Some of it will stick. When you are paying for advertising, you are paying fans to find you, follow you and keep on checking your music in the future.

Another plus point for Spotify comes from its viral potential. Someone recently asked me how they can get people to show interest in their Spotify playlist. Well, the answer to this, other than to use Hypeddit (see yesterday’s post) is to make sure that people who follow you can notice that you are paying interest in your own playlist. If someone can see you listening to something interesting, they will be curious.

The Pros of Spotify For Fans…

Technology such as Spotify or SoundCloud has meant that anyone with a passion for music can be found on these platforms. Therefore, more people are going to be searching and finding new music that they wouldn’t have in the era of the local music shop. The fact that people can find any artist they could ever name is possible because the fan does not have to purchase a CD to learn more. In fact, a month’s membership to Spotify is almost half the amount that many of the CDs cost in the shops. This has made free music streaming a no-brainer for fans…especially those who are ot as wealthy as others. Instead of budgeting for one album per month, the fan has access to millions of songs.

Spotify provides a free option for fans. However, the functionality of the free service is limited. You can’t just play any song you like. As well as this limited functionality, Spotify also places advertising before songs play. This can be annoying and is a big reason why they have so many premium membership customers. Now let’s look at the cons of Spotify.

The Cons of Spotify for Artists…

The artist earns a fraction of a penny from a single stream. When you consider that the music is made and produced by the artist, Spotify seems to be very cheeky in expecting artists to accept such a little amount of money. However, a little is better than nothing. That is why artists go along with what Spotify suggests.

Loopcloud Sounds

My advice to you is to focus on building your YouTube following. Google are much fairer to creators and will give creators most of the advertising revenue that has been generated on their channels. This may explain why Google are one of the world’s most popular brands.

The Cons of Spotify for Fans…

The fan can get free music streaming. However, if they want the free service, they have limitations. This is one of the biggest cons of Spotify. They can’t just listen to any song they choose as the premium member can. As well as this, they also have tonnes of advertising to trawl through before they get to the music they want to listen to. Therefore, if a fan is expected to have full functionality, they will have to pay for the privilege.

Where Should Your Focus Be?

If you want to make money with your music, you should forget about Spotify. Focus entirely on your YouTube channel, but also use Hypeddit to grow your YouTube channel and use SoundCloud too. SoundCloud is still a great way to get your music heard. If you build up these other channels, people will also check out your music on Spotify. It’s because we are all curious by nature so we all want to know what certain music sounds like.


As I just said, focus on YouTube if you’re in it for the money. Spotify will take you forever to reach that number of streams. However, I do believe that if you do focus on your YouTube channel, people will also want to check you out on Spotify.

Thank you for reading this post on the pros and cons of Spotify. Please feel free to check out any of our recent posts below…

About the Author
David Verney is a graduate from the University of West London, husband, father, Christian and Tottenham Hotspur fan. He started during his final year at University. The initial idea was just somewhere to put his ideas on the subject of music marketing. However, it has been going strong since then and (at the time of writing) this website is just over 3 years old. Ideas don't dry up because the industry is always changing. New websites with new features are being launched all the time. Therefore, Writer's Block does not feature. I hope you enjoy the blog. Please hit one of the banners and claim your free copy of The Complete Guide to Music Marketing. I plan to update my book with new content every year.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *