As we all know, the music landscape in this day and age pretty much revolves around streaming. And if we scope in, playlists are a fundamental part of the system, especially on Spotify. Editorial playlists formed by in-house curators are where you’d want to end up as an artist, however there are other types of playlists generated by Spotify that also play a major part in a single’s performance – cmon now we can’t ignore those. In this piece, we highlight the differences between the various kinds of playlists offered by Spotify.
For artists it's best practice to incorporate a long-term strategy that’s consistent when it comes to landing on Spotify playlists as improved analytical performance over time benefits your relationship with the algorithm. And that’s a great segue to the first type of playlist we’re about to dive into...
“Dude, you should really get Spotify! I feel as if it just gets my music taste”. A couple of years ago, that was the phrase my friend would regularly throw in our conversations in the hopes to convert me to a user. And when I got Spotify – needless to say I got what he meant… One of the things that made Spotify initially stand out from its competitors were the tasteful personalized playlists that were generated thanks to following our listening habits. Based on the algorithm’s findings various playlists are then precisely curated for individuals so that they can go around telling people “Spotify just gets me bro”. These algorithmic playlists include “Release Radar”, “Discover Weekly”, and “Daily Mix”.
This is a playlist updated every Friday and it contains new releases from artists recommended by the algorithm, artists they regularly listen to, and the artists they follow on Spotify.
If you’re an artist pitching your song to Spotify’s playlist editors via the Spotify for Artists platform doesn’t only increase your chances of landing in an editorial playlist, but it also means you automatically appear on your followers’ Release Radar when your track drops.
Discover Weekly is updated on Mondays and purely consists of music recommended to you based on your ‘taste-profile’ - the data that’s been recorded about the music you save into your playlists, what you skip, save, and share.
Sliding into many Discover Weekly playlists for artists requires their single to appear on a range of playlists, regardless if it’s big or small, user or editorial. Something to also be aware of is that it can take time for a track to do well on Discover Weekly (remember it’s a long-term game) as it could take off like a rocket once you pass 10,15 or 20k streams.
These are made up of a subset of playlists which are divided into the various genres an individual enjoys. The more styles of music a user listens to, the more mixes Spotify will generate though users can only get up to 6 different mixes.
Spotify has at least 3000 editorial playlists. Even though there are numerous kinds of these playlists they are like Drake’s newer music – it’s just very difficult to get into. Editorials are curated by Spotify employees and usually have large followings. The fact that placement in one of these playlists introduces artists to new audiences and increases the chances of their plays skyrocketing makes them very appealing, and they also tend to look pretty. There are actually two different types of editorials…
Personalized Editorial Playlists
These were introduced early 2019, B.C. (Before Corona) and they are essentially editorial playlists based on an individual’s taste profile. What this means is that two Spotify users could be listening to the same P.E.P. with different tracks allocated throughout the playlist as no two playlists look alike. Although there are a set of tracks chosen by Spotify’s editorial team in the playlist, and littered in-between are the algorithm determined tunes that are chosen thanks to your listening habits that also compliment the playlist.
Personalized Editorial Playlists are highlighted blue should an artist get into one of these. But keep in mind that if your track is placed into a P.E.P it means that it’s likely your track won’t be present on everyone’s version of that playlist.
Your followers however are able to have a personalized version of that playlist which includes your track on the top spot through a unique link you can share Spotify for Artists and Spotify Analytics.
Editorial Playlists (Standard Type)
Like I mentioned above, Editorials are curated by Spotify employees and are usually genre, context or mood orientated. As I’m writing this I’m actually listening to an Editorial called “Piano in the Background” which leans towards context orientated.
One of the factors that determine if an artist’s music land on an Editorial is how well their music is performing analytically (again, think long term). A lot of the tips mentioned under the Algorithmic playlists apply here too especially if it’s consistent. Generally, getting into Editorials becomes easier after the first couple of placements as you’re on the radar of curators. Another way of getting into these playlists is through pitching Spotify curators your single via the Spotify for Artists platform.