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Spotify's Royalty Change: Pushing Musicians to Step Up Their Marketing Game

Updated: Nov 14, 2023

Spotify is implementing a controversial new policy regarding royalty payouts to artists. Beginning in Q1 2024, tracks will need at least 1,000 streams per year to start generating royalties on the platform.

This minimum threshold has now been confirmed by Spotify. The move aims to redirect royalties from seldom-streamed tracks to more popular ones. Currently, around 200 streams generates about $0.70 in Spotify royalties. Tracks earning under this threshold absorb 0.5% of Spotify's royalty pool despite minimal streaming.

Spotify believes the 1,000 stream minimum will reallocate tens of millions from this 0.5% to the remaining 99.5%. In 2024 alone, the company expects around $40 million will shift from tracks with under 1,000 streams to those with over 1,000.

"This targets royalty payouts being destroyed by becoming fractional payments – pennies or nickels," said one insider. "Often these micro-payments don't even reach artists, as aggregators require a minimum payout level."

musicians step up your marketing game

Our take: While controversial, Spotify's new 1,000 stream minimum could nudge musicians in a positive direction when it comes to marketing. Earning royalties on Spotify demands savvy promotional tactics, and this policy change forces artists to step up their efforts. Losing out on streams under 1,000 may sound detrimental, but it only amounts to around $2.70 in lost royalties per track. This minimal impact means the policy won't truly hurt artists, but will encourage them to hone their marketing skills and adequately promote their music to hit 1,000 streams. Essentially, Spotify's metric encourages musicians to play by the rules of proper music marketing. By inspiring artists to promote as needed to reach enough loyal listeners, the change could motivate healthier marketing tactics in the long run.

The policy has garnered criticism, like from Believe CEO Denis Ladegaillerie who questioned discouraging artists with under 1,000 streams. "What signal does this send aspiring artists?" he asked.

Yet a 1,000 stream minimum may not deter artists like Doja Cat, who recently topped Spotify's charts. However, higher future thresholds like 10,000 or 20,000 streams could discourage newcomers.

While controversial, Spotify believes the 1,000 stream minimum will more fairly distribute royalties to viable artists. But the policy risks disenfranchising developing and niche acts. The platform must balance rewarding popular artists while avoiding deterring new talent.

Spotify Royalty Money Changes to payout

How Spotify's Royalty Change is Pushing Musicians to Improve their Marketing Strategies

As long as the minimum threshold stays at 1,000 streams, we support Spotify's new royalty policy. This change will help redirect royalties to full-time artists who have honed their craft and marketing skills. At the same time, it provides motivation for up-and-coming musicians to put in the work needed to gain a loyal following. Reaching 1,000 true fans who regularly stream your music is very doable with the right promotional strategy. Playlists Plus is here to help artists achieve this benchmark in an authentic way. We specialize in tailored Spotify follower growth campaigns and playlisting that secures meaningful playlist placements to drive organic streams. This policy shift recognizes the value of properly nurtured fanbases - let us help you cultivate yours.

The best way to ensure your tracks hit Spotify's new 1,000 stream benchmark is by getting placed on organic third-party playlists. Our music marketing service specializes in targeted Spotify growth, securing placements on genre and mood-based playlists followed by true music fans. We've helped countless artists gain over 100,000 streams in just months through personalized outreach to playlist curators.

By getting your music in front of engaged listeners who will actively stream your music, you’ll easily get the spins needed to surpass 1,000 streams. Don't leave your Spotify royalties fate to chance - our targeted playlist promotions will get your tracks heard by ideal audiences. With our affordable packages, your music can earn the consistent streams it deserves. Choose a campaign and start growing your music on Spotify today!

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