Skip to main content

New study: Royalties aside, streaming music gets fans out to shows

streaming music services drive live sales small concert
UnderTheSea / Shutterstock.com

Streaming services may be notorious for paying poor royalties, but at least they’re helping to bring more people out to see live music. That’s according to a new study commissioned by Eventbrite, which contends that, while streaming services have negatively affected CDs and digital download sales as of late, they’ve helped drive up average spending on concerts by a substantial amount.

According to the study, as streaming music services like Spotify and Pandora (and more recently, Tidal and Apple Music) have proliferated, average spending on CDs and digital downloads has dropped from $35 per person in 2008 to $18 in 2014. During that same time period, however, average spending on live music has grown from $29 to $48 per person. And for streaming music users who attend live shows, the study claims that half of them bought concert tickets to see artists they discovered on streaming platforms.

Linking up with independent research firm MusicWatch, Eventbrite found that concertgoers primarily use both ‘traditional’ mediums (TV, radio, and word of mouth), and streaming channels for music discovery. From the survey — which polled 1000 people between 18 and 49 who attended at least one concert in the last year — 42 percent said they used Pandora, Spotify, and YouTube to find new favorite artists. Unsurprisingly, traditional channels remain the most popular source, as 68 percent of those surveyed used them for music discovery.

Eventbrite also argues — logically — that fans who go to shows “are worth more” to artists in the long run. And the numbers back it up: concertgoers spend significantly more on music (including tickets) and artist merchandise than non-concertgoers: a whopping $276, as compared to $15. “(Concertgoers) spend four times as much on CDs and downloads, 10 times as much on merchandise, and are nearly twice as likely to pay for a music subscription,” according to Eventbrite.

If the popularity of streaming services continues to grow, these numbers bode well for an ever-expanding live music industry now worth $6.2 billion (according to Pollstar). It is worth noting, though, that streaming services are just one contributor in increasing live music attendance. The study notes that a combination of radio, streaming, social, and live performance “create a viral loop that amplifies buzz and drives ticket sales.”

Editors' Recommendations

Chris Leo Palermino
Former Digital Trends Contributor
Chris Leo Palermino is a music, tech, business, and culture journalist based between New York and Boston. He also contributes…
YouTube TV tips and tricks: how to get the most out Google’s live TV service
YouTube TV app icon on Apple TV.

There’s a reason YouTube TV has found itself the leader in live-streaming video. In fact, it has about twice as many subscribers to its cable-TV replacement as the next biggest platform. And. among other reasons like price, reliability, and abundance of channels, it is just packed with features.
In fact, YouTube TV has so many features tucked away in there that you’ll be forgiven if you don’t spot them all at first. But we’ve done the legwork. We’ve watched hours and hours of YouTube TV. Weeks and months, really. We’ve flipped all the buttons. We’ve pressed all the switches. (Wait — reverse that.) And we’ve put together a list of what we think are the most important — if not always obvious — YouTube TV tips and tricks. And we're not just talking about NFL Sunday Ticket.
This isn’t everything. There are still a few other places to explore in the settings menu, as well as when you’re watching shows and movies. But these are the YouTube TV tips and tricks we absolutely think you must know.

Record a show to watch later

Read more
Spotify just made live music a little bit better
Event listing for Chappel Roan on Spotify, seen on an iPhone.

Spotify has integrated Bandsintown to make it easier to see when and where your favorite act is playing — and to get tickets. Phil Nickinson / Digital Trends

It's not an uncommon situation: You're doing your thing on Spotify, listening to whatever it is the kids listen to these days, and you want to know where that band is playing. And whether you can get tickets. Both of those things are a little easier now that Spotify has teamed up with Bandsintown.

Read more
What is Amazon Music: everything you need to know
Amazon Music

It's a jungle of music streaming platforms out there, so it stands to reason that Amazon would have one among its massive kingdom of services. And while Amazon Music might not be top of mind among the Spotifys and Apple Musics of the world, you might be surprised by its 100-million-song library, high-resolution and spatial audio offerings, podcast library, Alexa voice control, and a pretty amiable user interface that makes finding music pretty easy.

Amazon Music's subscriptions range from free to its premium Music Unlimited tier, which can be added for $10 per month on top of a subscription to Amazon Prime. But they all come with some quirks and features. We're going to break them all down for you to help you choose which, if any, Amazon Music plan is right for you.

Read more