Explore how to increase your music streams after getting your song into sync licensing, with these top tips from Spotify and Netflix.

When you’re watching a film or TV show, the synced music can be subtle, but often is just as important as the visuals themselves. When your song to be chosen as a sync onscreen its not just something to feel proud of but, if you’re clever, it can also mean a boost in streams. Of not only that track, but your whole catalogue of music.

So how can you capitalise on the sync and make the most of having your music in a TV show, advert, or movie? Recently Spotify and Netflix joined together to research the impact of syncs on streams, and gave insight into what artists can do to turn viewers into fans. Here are their top tips.

Show off the sync in your artist profile

Most newcomers to your streaming profile will only know you from whatever movie or show your song has featured in. So make sure to change your artist bio to shout out about the sync so listeners know for sure they should hit play.

Everything should be up-to-date so newcomers see a fresh profile with all the information they want to find out about you clear in front of them. Spruce up your virtual merchandise table and make sure your artist profile picture and concert dates are refreshed.

Use Spotify promotional tools to push the synced track

Spotify has a range of features to give your song a promotional boost outside of the app. For example, artists can make a Spotify Canvas that uses visuals from the TV episode or film for a visual clue to listeners. Canvas are three to eight second long looping videos that can be shared to social media.

Speaking of social media, Promo Cards are an easy way to bring your song to the attention of potential new fans who might not have found it through the sync. Having your song synced is a big deal – shout about it!

For releases after the sync, Spotify encourages artists to use a Marquee campaign. A Marquee is a sponsored recommendation, popping up to your existing fans to show them when you’ve got a new release out. Selecting “Recently Interested” will ensure new listeners who have streamed your music after the sync will hear about your new tracks.

Spotify Marquee campaign tool in the US.
A Spotify Marquee campaign

Put the sync as your Artist Pick

Artist Pick on Spotify is the music you want to feature at the top of your profile so fans can’t miss it. Change yours to the synced song, or you can make a playlist including the track and other linked songs of your choice. Put a note explaining the choice, highlighting the sync to make newcomers think “Of course! That’s where I know that song from!”

Across the board, artists see an increase in streams post-sync, and paying attention to the above tips will ensure you’re ready to capitalise on the new attention.

Netflix and Spotify’s study proved viewers move from Netflix to Spotify when they hear a song that resonates with them in whatever movie or show they’re streaming. An obvious example of this was the re-invigoration of Kate Bush’s music in summer 2022.

Streams of Bush’s catalogue soared upwards by 439% after the track “Running Up That Hill” featured in an episode of Stranger Things. Fans were reminded how much they loved the rest of Bush’s music, and new listeners were entranced; everyone headed to their preferred streaming platform to play the whole song, and discovered other tracks in the process. In the week following the episode premiere, 6000% more Spotify listeners listened to Kate Bush for the first time than the previous seven days, all because of that sync.

Similarly, when “Truth Hurts” by Lizzo appeared in Someone Great (2019), a romcom on Netflix, streams of the song rocketed by 870% and her wider catalogue rose by 272% in a fortnight.

There’s longevity after the fact, too. Fans often add the song to a playlist, ensuring repeated plays of the track. Spotify and Netflix point to “Gotta Get Up” by Harry Nilsson, which featured heavily in Russian Doll on Netflix and was added to 7613% more playlists soon afterwards.

This research might seem obvious – the first thing a lot of us do when a sync catches the ear is Shazam it so we can stream it later – but for artists its proof that a sync deal really can change your career.

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