By Jack Barnes
This week marks a watershed for the rising content economy, defined by Spotify’s unorthodox IPO and the tumultuous aftermath that saw their market cap fluctuate between $19b and $26b.
Predicting Spotify’s fate, and its portent for the content economy and music industry, hinges on this question: Is Spotify more like Netflix than a traditional music streaming service?
Edison Trends (a Big Data platform that provides comprehensive and up-to-the moment e-commerce based data sets), weighed in, analyzing subscription signups for Spotify, Netflix and Pandora based on real purchase data from 3 million Americans.
Note: The data provided below is “normalized,” so all data is compared to the highest peak (100%)in each chart. E.G. 20% in a chart means ‘20% of the sales of the peak period’ (100%). This gives an indication of the trends to compare the companies, without sharing specific sales data (which these companies do not allow). I am happy to explain further if needed.
The data shows that Spotify and Netflix are indeed neck and neck: over Christmas week, the peak signup date of the year, Netflix new subscribers just edged out Spotify, with Spotify reaching 98% of Netflix’s new signup rate.
While Netflix leads throughout the year, the data shows that the company’s are quite close in terms of their primary source of revenue, paid subscribers. We hope this data provides some useful insights to guide analysis of the future of subscription models in music, and beyond!
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