At its core, Spotify is a data company, not a music company. In an effort to develop a loyalty program for Spotify's most important customers, Combo strategists recognized that Spotify had the data that provided a rich and comprehensive perspective on the musical passions of its superusers, and marrying this with an inventory issue would perpetually affect the music industry.

Spotify Thumbnail COMBO
Piloting Personalized Loyalty Rewards

Rewarding Loyalty

Spotify Premium is a key product within Spotify’s product portfolio, and the “superusers” within Premium are critical members in driving engagement and socializing their experiences among the wider Spotify community. What Spotify lacked was a solution that rewarded these superusers for their continued engagement.

Spotify Image 02 COMBO

Leveraging Data Without Breaking Trust

A distinguishing feature of Spotify Premium superusers is the sheer volume of time they spend on the platform. For this segment of Spotify’s listening audience, music is not about additive background texture but rather a defining characteristic of their being, and no one has greater access to understanding their music habits than Spotify. Combo strategists were tasked to understand how to activate this knowledge to most effectively communicate a shared passion vs. a creepy personal data understanding.©

© Despite transparency initiatives aimed at educating users, how brands use consumer data can be problematic for the consumer. Some practices that presently produce experiences consumers are more likely to feel are “creepy.”

Identifying Associations

Having recently completed the design of Adele’s concert merchandise, Combo designers and strategists had built a deep knowledge and understanding for why merchandise was a powerful engagement product and contributed a significant portion of an artist’s concert revenue. For a music lover and superfan, merch is a signal of devotion and tribal association during and after the event. One issue that perennially affects concert tours, however, is inventory management and ensuring a relatively even balance between supply and demand. Invariably, we found there is always inventory left over after a tour that is generally centralized with the small cluster of merchandise companies that dominate the industry. With this insight, Combo strategists had a solution to rewarding loyalty.

Thanks @Spotify. I got a free gift from them for being a big fan of premium!
Spotify Premium Member

Modeling Supply to Demand

Working closely with Spotify’s data insights team, Combo strategists created a subset of the “most valuable” Premium Superfans as identified by numerous variables such as listening stats, social sharing activity, genre preference, artist focus, etc. Combo strategists then worked with global leading merchandise partners to source overstocks and unsold concert inventory from recent and vintage concerts, pairing individual Premium Superfans with specific merchandise items.

Spotify Image 05 COMBO

Testing the Personalized Loyalty Rewards

As the launch of the program coincided with the holiday season, Combo strategists developed a design system for the holidays based on Spotify’s global brand standards to create a more contextually relevant reward experience. A simple customer journey was created that solicited merchandise sizing and physical addresses from Superfans. Two weeks before Christmas, Spotify delivered the bespoke matched merch to each fan in a packaging format designed to encourage social sharing and, in doing so, piloted Spotify’s first ever personalized loyalty rewards program.

@Spotify y’all know me too well. Thanks for starting my year off right.
Spotify Premium Member

New business: Connect with a partner.

Job inquires: View our handbook.

Newsletter©: Sign up.

167 Canal St., 3rd Floor
NYC, 10013

Social Media
Instagram, Behance, LinkedIn

View our show reel:
Watch video

General inquiries:

Media inquires:

Privacy Policy