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- Spotify, the $16 billion music streaming giant, is extending its merchandise partnership to allow artists to sell beauty products, like makeup.
- Merchbar will offer music fans the opportunity to ‘buy the look’ of particular artists through Spotify.
- Spotify will not earn direct revenue on the partnership. The idea is instead to give artists more opportunities to make money on the platform beyond streaming.
In times when Spotify is hotly tipped for a massive IPO, you probably wouldn’t expect it to branch out into eyeliners.
But that’s exactly what the $16 billion streaming giant announced today, as it expands its ongoing partnership with Merchbar to include beauty products, Techcrunch reports.
Working with makeup artist Pat McGrath and musician Maggie Lindemann, Merchbar – which already teamed up with Spotify last year to sell artists’ merchandise on their profile pages – will make it easy for listeners to “buy the look” of artists; a strand of social shopping already common on Instagram.
In the first stages, McGrath’s makeup brand Pat McGrath will retail items including lipstick and eye pencils through Spotify: “In this digitally-empowered, digital era of make-up, where fans crave instant glamour gratification I always want to reach fans where they’re most engaged,” said McGrath in a statement.
Spotify wouldn’t comment to TechCrunch whether the McGrath beauty line is the first of many being promoted on its platform, or whether Merchbar will expand its offering.
The streaming giant will not make any money off this initiative – yet. But even without direct revenues, such partnerships could help Spotify build “stickiness” on its platform among both listeners and advertisers, TechCrunch notes, in addition to helping it become more valuable to its community of merchandise-selling artists.
In her comment on the partnership, Jordan Gremli, Spotify’s Head of Artist and Fan Development, indeed made sure to highlight the value-add for artists.
“In partnering with Pat McGrath to offer beauty products in this innovative new way, [Maggie Lindemann] will be connecting directly with her fans in the place where they go to enjoy her music already on Spotify.”
Expanding to merchandise and beauty products is just one example of broadened horizons for the Swedish music giant, as it aims to leverage a 140-million strong user base for income streams other than subscriptions; for instance, through concert ticket services.
All of this helps Spotify build an ecosystem of recurring users and advertisers, which not only translates into a growing user base, but also boosts the company’s ambitions to become the world’s third largest advertiser behind Google and Facebook.
In that context, selling makeup could end up making a lot of sense.