Just how essential is streaming giant Spotify in getting an album to the No. 1 spot?
It’s a debate that has been raging throughout the music industry for the last year or so. Of course Adele and Taylor Swift are big enough to bypass streaming services and not have their sales falter. The question is? How about about everyone else?
Well here comes an exception to the rule, British pop rock band The 1975 opened at No. 1 on the Billboard chart with “I Like It When You Sleep, for You Are So Beautiful Yet So Unaware of It” (Dirty Hit/Interscope).
Here’s where it gets interesting. The album, which was withheld from Spotify for its first two weeks, but was available for streaming on similar sites — sold 98,000 copies and had the equivalent of an additional 10,000 sales through streaming and downloads of individual tracks, according to Nielsen.
The album also scored the No. 1 position in Britain, Canada, Australia and New Zealand.
In an ever-changing market for streaming music, outlets like Apple Music and Tidal are starting to release more exclusive content to try and set them apart from rival streaming services. Case in point, The 1975 made an exclusive deal with Apple Music to broadcast a live concert video from a rooftop in Los Angeles.
As streaming services compete for the market space, it will certainly become more common for artists to engage into exclusive deals to “showcase” their music and therefore restrict the songs use from one streaming service or another—at least for limited periods.