Stream of context: Understand the workout moment

Most fitness enthusiasts like to work out to a beat. For brands, it’s valuable to understand the deeper motivation behind this on-the-move listening.

Why people listen: Music is the motivation

In place of a personal trainer who follows you around everywhere you go, music has become one of the best motivators to get people to move. In fact, in our research we found that motivation is the number one reason people stream while working out.1 The beat gets people to go that extra mile or struggle through the extra rep.

A fitness brand can offer some supportive messaging in this moment. Still, motivation isn’t the only reason people listen to music during a gym session. They use music to escape too. In our study, U.S. users also listed “to relax” and “to set a certain mood” among their top three reasons to tune in while exercising.2

A well-timed message can be a welcome distraction in this case. Audio piques the imagination and transports the mind just enough to shift the focus away from the “work” part of a workout.

Listener spotlight: Ella, 20, London, UK. Ella listens to a specific type of music at the gym that she wouldn’t in other contexts.

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Hear how Ella soundtracks the Workout moment.

Where brands fit in: Empower your audience

There’s a special part brands can play in the relationship between working out and audio streaming, and it’s not just for athleisure or sports drink brands. Gym rats, runners, and yogis alike want to be taken on a journey that transports them to another place, space, or time. Travel, tech, beauty, and retail all have as much a place in the workout moment as fitness brands.

It comes back to context and the desire for motivation, relaxation, and inspiration during this moment. After all, most people who work out are only doing so for a fraction of their day. They also travel, eat, and have to stop at the store on their way home from the gym to stock up on paper towels. By delivering on a key need state, any type of brand can be relevant within the workout context.

One common thread for these need states is that the listeners are focused on themselves and some form of self-improvement while they’re working out. This is a great time to land an empowering message that creates a positive brand association.

How brands can connect: Be part of the flow

Brands who use the power of audio to tell a story have an advantage here. Wearable devices over-index in this moment by 500%, so think screenless and don’t ask your audience to interrupt the flow of their workout by clicking on a link.3 Include a call to action that can be easily remembered and repeated to their voice-activated device, or looked up online later.

Think about what they’ll be doing after the workout, or how the workout will benefit them at a later time.

Check out the success story below to learn how one brand used contextual details to get runners thinking about happy hour after the race.

1 Crowd DNA & Spotify, Seize The Moments survey among 4,800 Spotify users 18-44 in AU, BR, DE, MX, UK, US, April 2019 2 Crowd DNA & Spotify, Seize The Moments survey among 800 US Spotify users 18-44, April 2019 3 Spotify First Party Data, global, 2019

Running the Michelob Marathon

Michelob Ultra took contextual messaging the extra mile. We built a custom experience that took into account recent listening history, the length and intensity of their run, and even the weather.

Looking for something a little more custom? Let's talk.