Music streaming platform Spotify has become the latest internet giant to test the Stories function, usually ephemeral videos or pictures that disappear after a while.
According to TechCrunch, the platform is allowing influencers to incorporate video elements into their public playlists. Like similar Stories features on other apps, such as Snapchat and Instagram, the Spotify Stories appear as short video clips that users can tap on to get to the next video.
A Spotify spokesperson confirmed the test, saying: “At Spotify, we routinely conduct a number of tests in an effort to improve our user experience. Some of those tests end up paving the path for our broader user experience and others serve only as an important learning. We have no further news to share on future plans at this time.”
Influencers can share small song snippets of their chosen track, along with the album art, as a way to preview the songs on a particular playlist. The first influencer to gain access to the function is makeup and fashion YouTuber Summer McKeen, with a collective 4 million followers across YouTube, Instagram and Spotify. McKeen has been using the feature to accompany a playlist of her all-time favourite songs.
TechCrunch reports that Spotify is planning on bringing this feature to other influencers across the entertainment, lifestyle and music industries. It’s not a tool for artists really, instead it focuses on aiding music discovery for Spotify users.
Despite borrowing tactics from social media companies, yet apparently this isn’t about turning the Spotify app into another social platform. Instead, it appears influencers will use their other accounts, such as Instagram, to encourage their fans to engage with Spotify.
At the moment, the feature is available on Spotify’s iOS and Android yet it could see a wider rollout in the future. Stories features have definitely worked for other platforms: Instagram Stories now has 400 million monthly active users. It’s already possible to post about what you’re listening to on Spotify directly into Instagram so it appears this new attempt is Spotify trying to take a slice of that pie. Presumably, it’ll also make it easier for fans to add new music to their own playlists and accounts.
Something has to be said about Stories fatigue, however. With Snapchat, Facebook, Facebook Messenger, Instagram, YouTube and now Spotify offering the feature, it may be the most engaging way for influencers and followers to connect at the moment but with so many platforms to contend with, it’s going to get a little exhausting.