Spotify is considering a move from the virtual world into live events.
That’s according to 9to5Mac, which cites a report from The Information on Wednesday saying the streamer is considering getting deeper into virtual events along with live concerts.
It’s a move that could bring new revenues to Spotify, a digital music, podcast and video service that offers free and for-pay versions of its services.
In addition, the move could bolster the service’s relationships with artists and help it stand out from Apple Music, which stopped holding its iTunes Music Festival in 2017. Apple has continued to hold some live events, but nothing on the scale of what Spotify is apparently considering.
Spotify held virtual mini-concerts in May and June, selling tickets at $15 each for artists like The Black Keys and Leon Bridges. At the time, Spotify said the series was part of a plan to better “integrate concerts into the overall listening experience by making performances easier to find and helping fans track the events and artists they care about.”
The new report says Spotify is considering selling tickets for future events, offering a new revenue source of a business “that is notorious for running on thin margins.”
In the long term, it would help Spotify diversify its revenue, which it currently shares with music labels. In the short or medium term, the impact will be minimal, the report suggests, because Spotify isn’t trying to compete with the giants of live entertainment such as LiveNation.
In addition, Spotify could use data about listening habits to help performers plan concerts in less-populated parts of the country, markets typically too small for big headliners.
“That approach would help Spotify demonstrate to artists how it can help their careers,” the report says. “And by offering tickets to its own events, Spotify can help differentiate its streaming service from that of its big rival, Apple Music.”