Spotify Wrapped - The Whole Story and the Hidden Marketing Behind It

Spotify Wrapped - The Whole Story and the Hidden Marketing Behind It
Spotify Wrapped Campaign

The quote quoted above is probably my favorite. There is probably not a single day when any person is away from art. Art is so closely aligned with the reality that it is impossible to separate the two things. They are so much together that we cannot imagine these two separated for even a single day of ours. One such art is music. It's quite a popular way to add a soundtrack to whatever you are doing.

Do you listen to music? Dude, what kind of question is that? Everyone listens to music. This is quite true; no one asks these sorts of questions. Do you now like to directly ask about what is your most liked genre? Speaking of music, the most famous music provider/streamer is Spotify.

Spotify never leaves a stone unturned to make customers woo. They do their most popular marketing campaign called “Spotify wrapped” and many cool tricks to make its user retention an all-time high. This article is just about that specifically and especially of all the marketing tactics. We will discuss how Spotify has managed to hit the right note with music lovers all around the world.

"Art is the lie that enables us to realize the truth.” ― Pablo Picasso

About Spotify
The Fluidity in Spotify
Consumer Psychology
How Spotify uses User Inputs and Machine Learning
The Spotify Wrapped Experience
Spotify Trying to Wrap up a Whole Decade
Features of Spotify Wrapped
How to Find Spotify Wrapped
Why Spotify Wrapped is Popular
Wacky Advertisements of Spotify

About Spotify

You would be living under a rock if you didn't know what Spotify is. We all know that Spotify is an audio streaming platform available on all devices all over the world. Surprisingly, Spotify was founded in 2006, and in such a short span of time, it has become the most popular streaming service in the world.

Spotify has made a place in the hearts of audiophiles all around the world. The reason is the fact that they are a music streaming platform and everyone is a music lover. Also, they are famous for their wacky advertising marketing faces and exact usage of consumer psychology for that matter.

Once you sign up for this audio streaming service and begin using it, they will notice your listening habits. As you go about interacting more and more with Spotify, listening to music and podcasts, Spotify will get to know you more.

With all these data inputs, Spotify suggests more songs and creates personalized playlists for you. This personalization is absolutely loved by people who use Spotify; the fact that they can discover a new jam every now and then, based on Spotify's intelligence, just connects with the audience.

Spotify Personalized Playlist
Spotify Personalized Playlist

Let us know how this works, and then we will later jump to how the “Spotify Wrapped” works.

The Fluidity in Spotify

When we talk about a business operating in the area of music, then we can think of the massive audience that they have to cater to. For the record, it is true that Spotify has to cater to a huge audience, but whatever they do in their marketing upfront, it is not messy at all. The point that I am trying to uncover here is that Spotify has fluidity in its works. They know that things can get super boring super fast for people of this generation, so it is imperative to experiment bit by bit.

This fluidity in their marketing team helps them to garner consumers and thus make them a paying member of their line of work. Elegant use of consumer psychology often works in this quest for customer retention. Let us see a bit about how this segment works,

Consumer Psychology

Annual Spotify Users (2017-2023)
Annual Spotify Users (2017-2023)

Consumer behavior or consumer psychology is the study of individuals, groups of individuals, and all the activities and thinking processes. It is mainly associated with the purchase, sale, use, and disposal of goods and even services. Consumer behavior also consists of how emotions, attitudes, and other preferences affect consumers' buying behavior. This also includes the hit-and-trial method of getting customers loyal. This experiment makes corporations learn more about customers and thus retain and make more the retention of people transacting with firms. It is a very common practice in this internet era.

How Spotify uses User Inputs and Machine Learning

Listening is everything - Spotify’s motto

Spotify is high on artificial intelligence and machine learning. They know the patterns that you listen to music too; they know every input needed to suggest the next song. These inputs allow quite everything at the Spotify headquarters. ‘Listening is everything’ is the motto of this audio streamer. While you listen to songs that they provide, they listen to your listening patterns. They thus create a pattern that can eventually predict your mood and the genre of music you may want to listen to in the future.

There are half a billion people that listen to music online and the vast majority are doing so illegally. But if we bring those people over to the legal side and Spotify, what is going to happen is we are going to double the music industry and that will lead to more artists creating great new music. - Daniel Ek (Founder and CEO at Spotify)

Daniel knew very well that the music market was hugely scattered in many directions. To organize music lovers from all over the world, he knew he needed to take support of technology. So he chose the top-notch and what we call state-of-the-art machine learning. Organizing the market into an industry that has streaming as a habit takes a lot of muscle.

Years of deliberate practice and features like “Discover Weekly” and monthly reels put them high on the charts. At this point in time, Spotify has emerged as the best player among audio streaming service providers. This also shows how the behavior of the general public all over the world has changed. The song, music, and artiste industry went up a huge scale and turned from being an unorganized sector to a well-organized sector. This growth is notable, and Spotify is heading the efforts.

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The Spotify Wrapped Experience

Spotify Wrapped Campaign
Spotify Wrapped Campaign

Spotify Wrapped is the ultimate amalgamation of machine learning and your musical tastes. These two things on the plate create real magic. People yearn for this magic, and Spotify is the head of this department for this magic in the whole world. They started doing wraps up for its users in the year 2016.

Spotify Wrapped from that year became a hit viral marketing technique for Spotify. The wrap includes all the songs users have been listening to in the past year, the genre they were the most into, and their favorite artists, along with minutes streamed and other data. It included the top five musicians that users have listened to. Moreover, it is not just another marketing campaign but a huge viral social media campaign.

Every year, millions of Spotify users share their Spotify wrapped to their social media profiles, which boosts Spotify. In the app store, the Spotify app has historically seen a jump at the end of the year because it is released at the end of the year.

Spotify sends an email to every person who is eligible for the year inwrapped. For many people, this email is their favorite email of the year. It has become some kind of ritual for all audiophiles/music streamers all over the world.

The reason people love this form of advertising is that it is too personal. This personal touch (obviously in a very good way) is made possible with the advent of technology. This personalization made Spotify the brand that it is today. The moment you click the link, they will begin showing you the year-wrapped reel.

Beginning with words like “If 2021 was a movie, you were the main character”. Dude! That's encouraging. Then comes the next page showing how many new artists you discovered this year. Then comes the top genres you listened to the most and how many genres you discovered. Then, the most-streamed song/single and the most-streamed day. How can we explain this without using the word “Awesome”?

How is Spotify Wrapped Made

The purpose of the "Spotify Wrapped" campaign is simple: to promote the music streaming platform. Spotify, however, says that "wrapped" is a way of returning the favor to Spotify users for the past year. This way, users get to know more about their musical tastes, and the data can be helpful in rediscovering music again. It is a win-win situation for both the streaming giant as well as the music listeners. Whatever the purpose, the Spotify Wrapped campaign fulfills the needs of both the provider and the receiver in this transaction in this manner.

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Spotify Trying to Wrap up a Whole Decade

Spotify Wrapped - The Playlist of the Decade

As people were wrapping up a year, Spotify thought bigger and better. The whole damn thought of wrapping a full decade. They tried to put together all the hit tracks of the past decade in a single playlist and tried to create magic out of this. The reactions were amazing, and their video got great views. This was done last year, which was the dreadful year 2020. Spotify truly knows how to set the background soundtrack right.

Features of Spotify Wrapped

Spotify Wrapped provides insights into your music preferences, top artists, genres, fun trivia, and statistics. Here are some of the key features of Spotify Wrapped:

  1. Your Listening Personality: Spotify Wrapped assigns you a "Listening Personality" based on your listening habits. This personality type is determined by your genre diversity, listening time, and the time of day you typically listen to music.
  2. Your Artist Revealed: The feature displays your year's top 5 artists and listening habits. You'll see statistics like total listening time for each artist, their top songs, and the time you listen to them.
  3. Your Top Songs and Genres: Spotify Wrapped reveals your top five songs and genres of the year. You'll also see statistics like the total minutes spent listening to each song and genre and the top artists within each genre.
  4. Artist Message: Personalize Wrapped with "Your Artist Message" from top artists. Explore video messages in Wrapped, like Taylor Swift and Jung Kook. Use Blend to compare music with friends and let Spotify's AI DJ share insights.

How to Find Spotify Wrapped

Discover the Wrapped feed on the Home Screen by spotting a banner or wrapped button in the top right corner. Below the tab, find highlights and your wrapped and curated playlists. Easily share the highlight story on social media by tapping the "Share this story" button. Ensure your Spotify app is up-to-date, and explore Wrapped on the browser at

Spotify introduced its initial year-end review, "Year in Review," in 2013, utilizing streaming data. The concept evolved into "Wrapped" by 2016, incorporating unique features like "audio auras" and "listening personality types" derived from user data. This year's version introduces "Me in 2033" and "Sound Town." Beyond user engagement, artists like Dionne Warwick and John Mayer actively contribute to the campaign, recording special messages. Despite starting as a loyalty initiative, the unexpectedly high user sharing turned Spotify Wrapped into a phenomenon, as Spotify's Alex Bodman discussed in a 2021 Variety interview. There are several reasons why Wrapped has become so successful:

  1. Wrapped's personalized insights, visualizations, and gamification features make it highly engaging for users. Comparing listening habits with friends adds extra excitement to the fun and interesting statistics.
  2. Spotify Wrapped promotes social sharing among users, creating a sense of community as they share their music preferences on social media.
  3. Wrapped's "Artist Engagement" feature lets top artists send personalized messages to fans, creating an exclusive and engaging experience.
  4. Wrapped is a cultural phenomenon eagerly awaited by users each year, demonstrating its personal resonance.

Wacky Advertisements of Spotify

When everyone knows that the human attention span has reduced a lot, this calls for a modern solution. As the meme would say, “Modern problems require modern solutions.” The news for the hour is meme marketing.

Wacky advertisements can leave a mark on the conscience of people wandering online and elsewhere. Cred does it, Spotify does it, and every smart company does it. Okay, every smart company who knows the power of humor does it. Here are some examples: Though it is time for Christmas, audiophiles must be waiting for their Spotify-wrapped year reel. Spotify added a little fun marketing ping to it. They made promotional videos featuring famous songs of the year. By famous songs, we mean the most streamed songs of the year.

Here is one example of the blockbuster “Lambiyaan.” The description read - “If 2021 was an exam, spending the nights with Raatan Lambiyan always felt like the right answer! Find out more about the music you listened to in 2021 with #SpotifyWrapped”.

Spotify Wrapped Marketing Campaign

Another promotional video starred the song “Nadiyon paar,” which was also a hit this year. It was streamed millions of times. They also have a marketing campaign named 'Dil filmy to suno filmy'. It shares the love of Bollywood songs with the general public. While showcasing the basic human tendency to humm a song that you heard somewhere, here, have a look at one of the videos.

Spotify Wrapped Marketing Campaign

The fact that they connected two things to each other makes the recipe for perfect videos. They connected trending soundtracks to everyday situations that people faced. That became the perfect recipe for these videos to strike a chord with streamers. Their use of consumer behavior is helping them garner more views and more streams and downloads.


The very first principle that Spotify follows is the “rule of personalization”. They know that personalized marketing boosts customer loyalty. Through this feature of ‘Year wrapped,’ they are trying to do the same. If they manage to get a personalized touch to every single person using Spotify, then it will go a long way and become a huge factor in driving sales and revenue.

This has been made possible via the help of new-age technologies like machine learning and better management of user data. Needless to say, this viral marketing campaign has gone a long way into audiophiles’ hearts.

Not only this, but this is also can be said to be a major motivator for selling subscription plans to users of Spotify. A popular quote goes like this: “Data is 21st century’s gold”. This is the golden rule for companies that try to give personalized services to their consumers. Spotify is not an exception, and what it is doing with data is quite magically promising and thoughtful.

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Is Spotify Wrapped only for premium users?

No, Spotify wrapped is for both premium and free users.

How does Spotify create Wrapped?

Spotify tracks users' listening habits from the period from January 1 to October 31 and then compiles it into a playlist at the end of the year.

When did Spotify launch the Spotify Wrapped marketing campaign?

Spotify originally released the viral marketing campaign 'Spotify Wrapped' in 2015.

What was Spotify using to market the "Wrapped" promotion?

Spotify uses a multifaceted marketing strategy to promote its annual "Wrapped" campaign. This includes social media integration, email marketing, targeted advertising, and more.

Why is Spotify Wrapped so successful?

Spotify Wrapped is successful because it is personalized, social, and engaging. It allows users to see their listening habits in a fun and interesting way, and it encourages them to share their results with friends.

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