Stream of context: Your guide to everyday audio moments

Enter the stream of context.

Getting context right — landing the right message, in the right setting, at the right time — is key to getting your message heard.

As marketers, we throw the word context around a lot — like, a lot. Count the times we say it on this page if you’ve got some free time. That’s because we know getting context right — landing the right message, in the right setting, at the right time — is the holy grail for brands. So we set out to find out how brands can use context to truly be heard in the moment.

Here’s an audio experience that takes you into a few common daily moments: Working Out, Cooking, Partying, and Chilling. Listen along with Alex, who’s having a pretty nice Saturday. Then, keep scrolling for a guide to each individual moment.

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Put on headphones for the full effect.

Audio flexes to the moment
Multi-device users stream Spotify for 2.5 hours per day,1 which means we’re constantly learning about how people listen in real-time through our streaming intelligence — first-party, contextual data that reveals moods, mindsets, habits, and tastes in the moment.

On the other end of the headphones, the flexibility of streaming audio allows people to match the vibe of, or even shape, key moments throughout their day with a personalized soundtrack. In fact, 73% of U.S. Spotify listeners use audio differently depending on where they are, what they’re doing, and who they’re with.2

To be heard, respect listeners’ context
With more devices, more content, and more ads than ever before, brands need to find a way to cut through the noise to get their message heard. One way to get through to your audience: deliver messages that are relevant to the context they're listening in.

We asked users why and how they listen in order to more fully understand their streaming context. Listen up to learn how your brand can be heard in the moment that makes the most impact.

Working Out

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. Click below to learn more about the Workout moment.


For many people, cooking is a way to wind down at the end of a long week — in fact, listening while prepping food actually peaks on Fridays. Click below for more snackable insights on the Cooking moment.


Whether it’s a house party, BBQ, or Girls’ Night pre-game, music helps people set the mood for themselves, and for the folks they’re entertaining. Learn how to celebrate your brand in the context of celebrations with our guide to the Party moment.


It probably comes as no surprise that people turn to tunes to chill out. In fact, over a third of all respondents to our recent survey say the primary reason they listen to music is to relax or de-stress. Click below to focus on the Chill moment.

How to consider context in your creative

After you dive into our guides, here are a few best practices to keep in mind for your context-based campaigns.

1. Keep your messages relevant

Consider content interests that align with your brand message. Through podcast listener targeting, you can now reach comedy buffs, culture lovers, and more.

For example, if you’re looking to drive awareness of a new comedy series or want to reach people who are into sports, you can find listeners of podcasts with similar topics and target them with a relevant message.

2. Get the beat of your ad right

Playlist keywords give us clues to the listeners’ context within the moment they’re listening: their setting, their current genre preference, and even their preferred BPM. So much so, that campaigns that include playlist targeting drive 2.1x higher intent than campaigns that don’t.

Know what your audience is listening to and match your creative to the vibe. There are over 3 billion playlists on Spotify — both Spotify-curated and personal. Whether it’s workout (Beast Mode, Workout Twerkout), cooking (Kitchen Swagger, Your Kitchen Stereo), chill (Lo-Fi Beats, Peaceful Piano), or party (Dance Party, Girls’ Night), there’s endless opportunity to get creative with how you reach your audience in context.

3. Use context to find the right canvas

Spotify’s streaming intelligence can identify when the screen is in view, or when audio is the star of the show. Audio and video advertising both have their moments of context — find the right way to deliver your message.

A video with a direct call to action is a great fit for when the screen is in view. For on-the-go moments, use the power of audio to tell a story and create a memorable impression for the listener.

1 Spotify First Party Data, global, based on daily content hours / daily active users, free users multiplatform, May 2019 2 Culture Next Report, Spotify trend survey among 500 US Spotify Users 15-37, February 2019

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