The holidays are for gift-giving and get-togethers—made all the merrier by that familiar seasonal soundtrack. After all, where would we be without holiday party playlists? Music helps set the stage for the festivities, enticing millions of listeners to tune in while they decorate, celebrate, travel, and shop. And that makes streaming a critical addition to your seasonal advertising strategy.
Last year's holiday shopping season broke previous records in the U.S., with total retail spending growing by more than 16—and this year's holiday retail sales are expected to top $1.2 trillion.1 At the same time, inflation and an increased cost of living could impact consumer spending and create a challenge for brands.
In a matter of months, we'll be drinking spiced apple ciders and belting out our favorite carols. It may seem early, but in truth, now is the time to begin thinking about holiday marketing ideas—starting with Spotify.
Spotify audience listening trends and insights into shopping behavior provide just the intel you need to reach your audiences wherever they are. Here's how brands can join in the holiday cheer and let their voice be heard.
A joyful jumpstart
When the holiday spirit strikes, it's hard to resist getting festive—which may be why holiday shopping seems to begin earlier and earlier. Spotify research shows that last year, more than half (53%) of Spotify listeners shopped pre-Thanksgiving, and more than one in four (26%) started shopping in October or earlier.2
To capitalize on lucrative shopping trends, start thinking about Thanksgiving marketing ideas now—along with strategies for reaching shoppers on Black Friday and Cyber Monday. Make sure your audience is aware of your products and any sales you've got going on. Digital audio ads are a great tool for increasing awareness at this time of the year, given that some people stream holiday music in November. In 2021, holiday music streaming in the US saw an increase of 32% vs. 2020.3
Aisle be back
You can bet retailers will be blasting holiday tunes come November, but did you know that many shoppers prefer to bring their own soundtrack? In fact, 40% of Spotify listeners said they listen to their own music while shopping because "it's better than the store's music."4
In addition, 30% of listeners shopped in-store at least twice a week during the 2021 holiday season (an increase of 21% over 2020).5 By placing digital audio ads on Spotify playlists and podcasts, you can help spread the word about your holiday offers—while people are actively buying.
Seize the play
Shoppers are bringing more than their own musical soundtrack to supplement their shopping experience—they're also tuning into podcasts while perusing seasonal sales. Around two in five listeners reported that they listen to podcasts while holiday shopping, with listeners between the ages of 35 and 44 about 26% more likely to do so than other age groups.6
For advertisers seeking out this specific age range as a target audience, this could be an opportunity to get your message heard by people who are already in the spending spirit. A jolly tone and festive messaging in your podcast ad might go a long way—Spotify research suggests listeners are more likely to remember an ad when it meets the moment or context.7
I like big box and I cannot lie
Holiday foot traffic is huge for retailers, of course—but it actually benefits advertisers of all kinds. For beauty, clothing, toy, and electronics brands, for example, how better to reach shoppers than when they're browsing the aisles of a big box store?
New Spotify and Foursquare research shows that foot traffic among Spotify listeners picked up significantly during last year's holiday season, increasing 37% in December 2021 compared with foot traffic levels in October. That's just one more reason to make digital audio ads part of your holiday advertising strategy.8
Considering the current economic landscape, it's more important than ever for brands to start thinking about marketing ideas for the holidays—and how they can reach an audience that's highly engaged and in the right context.
Ready to make your holiday message sing? Get started on our self-serve ad platform today—we’ll even help you create audio ads for free.
- Source: "US Holiday 2021 Review and Holiday 2022 Preview," Insider Intelligence/eMarketer. February 2022.
- Source: "Holiday on Spotify: Stream the Spirit."
- Source: Spotify Internal Data, U.S., Spotify Free Users, moment=holidays. Nov-Dec 2021 vs. Nov-Dec 2022.
- Source: "Spotify x Qualtrics Holiday Shopping Survey," U.S. Spotify Free users and Podcast listeners, 18+," March 2021.
- Source: "Spotify x Qualtrics Holiday Shopping Survey," U.S. Spotify Free users and Podcast listeners, 18+," February 2022.
- Source: "Spotify x Qualtrics Holiday Shopping Survey," U.S. Spotify Free users and Podcast listeners, February 2022.
- Source: "Key Moments Survey," Spotify Users A15-40, U.S., UK, DE, IT, SP, MX, BR, AU, October 2019 *answered top two boxes on a scale from Strongly Disagree to Strongly Agree
- Source: "Spotify + Foursquare Foot Traffic Analysis," Oct 2021-Dec 2021, U.S.