Today Spotify is giving the truly vast number of artists available on its platform access to data on how they're being listened to. The data can be useful, if understood, interpreted and contextualized properly, to artists trying to identify untapped audiences or optimize their tour routing.
The Fan Insights dashboard joins similar initiatives from Pandora and YouTube and helps creators to segment their audience and the sources of those listeners. The utility helps delineate between fans and casual listeners -- drilling down to fans that have listened to an artist every day for a week, most days of a month, new listeners -- as well as geographical locations, what percentage of listens are being generated by specific playlists on the service and other metrics like statistics on specific songs and albums, and spikes in popularity by their date and which artists people listened to the most besides themselves (or their client). Spotify tells Billboard it worked with managers and artists to try and identify the data metrics that would be most helpful to the most people -- to provide them "the right data in the right context," as a Spotify representative explained it to Billboard during a preview of the features.
The design of Insights is smooth and slick, more resembling a semi-dynamic piece of online feature journalism than a serious analytics tool, though representatives stressed this is a beta version of the dashboard.