Where Spotify sits in the audio ecosystem

Country president Jon Hales on the audio co's first-ever survey of Canadian listeners.

Spotify has been in the Canadian market for just over 18 months, but didn’t know where it sat in the audio ecosystem, so it launched a survey of GTA residents to find out who knows about the streamer.

Jon Hales, country manager, advertising and strategic partnerships at Spotify Canada, said the timing was right to find out more around the audio co’s awareness in the market.

“The whole idea about this isn’t to say that radio is no good or that radio doesn’t work, we know for a fact that it does work,” says Hales. “What we’re saying is that Spotify is a fantastic complement to radio buys.”

The survey was done in partnership with TNS Global and included 1,011 residents of the GTA aged 15 to 65 who were questioned online in Dec. 2015. The survey covered both digital and traditional radio in the GTA.

According to the results, awareness of Spotify is skewed towards younger demos, coming in at 84% for those aged 15 to 24 and 77% for those 25 to 34. Overall awareness of the streaming service registered at 63%.

The survey also revealed the free version of Spotify is the largest digital music service in terms of weekly reach with those aged 15 to 65, at 16.8%. Hales notes that number will likely grow, because at the time of the survey the now-closed Rdio was still operating in the market.

When measured with Toronto radio stations that puts it in fifth place, just ahead of Q107 at 15% and just behind 98.1 CHFI at 18%. Spotify doesn’t provide country-specific user numbers, but Hales says that Canadian users spend an average of 150 minutes a day on the app.

Advertising side, Hales says that the biggest thing that has surprised him and his team at Spotify Canada is client demand for video spots. Currently the audio company can run 15 and 30-second ads on the free version of the platform. In total there is about three minutes of ads per hour on Spotify.

Video options on Spotify will soon be expanding, with the user-facing shows that went online in the U.S., Germany, U.K. and Sweden last month expanding into Canada soon, says Hales. In those markets Spotify users now have access to video programs from more than a dozen content partners, including BBC, Comedy Central and ESPN.