Let's dive into a quick roundup of platform updates from Apple Music, YouTube, and Spotify!
One of the great things about the rise of the creative class is just how much big companies are focusing on content creator needs. Even just a few years ago, the creator-facing platforms for major DSPs were pretty sparse. But now, companies are continually adding features to keep creators, well, creating.
Apple Music, YouTube, and Spotify rolled out some new features in their creator analytics platforms. Apple Music for Artists is taking a cue from Spotify and making it easier for artists to promote their releases, while YouTube Studio is adding a whole new type of content to the platform. And Spotify made some minor changes for all, and major changes for some.
Apple Music For Artists Platform Update
Apple Music for Artists just launched a whole new "Promote" tab on the site. In this new section, users can choose certain songs, albums, playlists, or music videos to create shareable assets around.
The feature is relatively straightforward and simple, but surprisingly effective. A user simply clicks on whatever they want to promote, and then chooses from a few options. These include things like aspect ratio (i.e. vertical portrait, landscape, or square), what type of image you want, and the background color.
From there, Apple generates a "card" (either as an image or a video) and a link for users to download and share. Apple also makes it really easy to get multiple versions of the asset at once. You can also choose to send via email instead of download. It's worth noting the sharable link is a Linkfire integration as opposed to a completely native Apple feature.
The new update isn't revolutionary by any stretch of the imagination, but it's a really nice way to share content with fans — especially if you're feeling pressed for time or creatively drained. Probably the coolest feature is the ability to share any official playlists you were added to or content milestones Apple creates for you. Those types of things always tend to get a little more response from fans who may already be well aware of your new music.
YouTube Studio Platform Update
YouTube Music is getting podcasts soon, which means users will be able to both watch and listen to their favorite podcast episodes through YouTube. In the past, YouTube has been a big growth driver for podcasts, but still pretty exclusively through the video medium. So it was only super effective for podcasts that also film and edit their episodes.
This means podcasts also now have a place in YouTube Studio, which added the new "Podcasts" tab under channel content last week. Now, a podcast gets organized as a playlist, with each video in that playlist showing up as one episode. Users manage this categorization right in YouTube Studio, which means a few things.
For starters, it means one YouTube channel can create multiple different podcasts without having to create entirely new channels for them. This could be valuable as YouTube seemingly makes efforts to help multifaceted creators keep their content under one overall brand. Along with the addition of handles, this move might suggest YouTube is focusing on serving the creator more than just the content (compared to a platform like TikTok).
Creating podcasts within YouTube Studio also makes creators eligible for things like official search cards, badges on podcasts and videos, and the option to be featured by YouTube's podcast section. And as mentioned before, it makes these episodes available in YouTube Music.
Spotify For Artists Platform Updates
There's also some movement in the world of beta product updates within Spotify for Artists. For starters, you might notice Spotify switched the navigation from a "dual top nav" setup to a horizontal menu on the left. It's, you know, fine.
More artists might find themselves eligible to opt in to Spotify's (somewhat controversial) Discovery Mode. This means they can take a financial cut for the opportunity to land in more algorithmic radio spots. This option will appear on the Campaigns page if it's available to you.
Other artists may also see a new "Video" tab on Spotify for Artists underneath the "Campaigns" section (which is still in beta and may not be available to all artists). Here, users can upload clips that are 30 seconds or less. Spotify says, "You can tell the story of the song, tease a new release, share your creative process, offer a peek behind the scenes, or anything else you can come up with." This feature seems to be an extension of a similar feature Spotify rolled out during the most recent "Wrapped" promotion.