How Spotify is Inspiring New Ed Tech Business Models
If you’ve heard of or used Spotify, chances are, you’ve got your eyebrows raised. How could a music streaming service bear any correlation with education technology, you must be conjecturing? Here’s how. Spotify isn’t just a recreational service. If used effectively, it can also double up as a learning platform, implementable in a variety of ways. From building vocabulary to celebrating a theme, Spotify can make learning fun. Plus, by twinning its content library with video streaming technologies like Pinlearn, you can even take learning outside the classroom. But the streaming service isn’t only being used in educational institutions, it is also inspiring universities to adopt its business model to monetise knowledge content better. But before we go any further, let’s get to know Spotify better.
What is Spotify?
Spotify is a music, video and podcast streaming platform that was founded in Stockholm in 2008. The service essentially offers original content sourced from record labels and media houses to listeners. Operating on a freemium model, Spotify has kept its rudimentary features free, underpinned by advertising. To gain access to superior features, such as enhanced streaming quality and offline music downloads, you would need to purchase a paid subscription for. The service is available across a host of devices and operating systems such as Windows, Mac and Linux. It is also present in many world markets. With a library of more than 30 million songs and with 50 million paid subscribers, it is one of the most successful music streaming platforms in the world.
What is the Monetisation Model?
Spotify’s monetisation model essentially works by brokering a sale of music on behalf of a rights holder.
The Cost Angle
Spotify’s outflows are largely composed of the outflows paid to rights holders. Spotify pays royalties to an artist, based on the number of streams downloaded, as a ratio of the total streams downloaded on the service. About 70% of the revenue from a music sale is paid to a rights holder, who in turn, pays an artist their share of the revenue.
The Revenue Angle
Spotify features two paid plans on its platform: Spotify Premium and Spotify Family. The rates for the two plans differ from market to market, but the benefits are standardised, with Spotify Family offering more features than Spotify Premium. Spotify Premium is an ideal subscription if you’re looking to use it in an educational context.
How Can Spotify Link with Education?
Spotify can play a pivotal role in the way school lessons are conducted. Though it can be used similarly at a university level, it is also relevant in higher education as an influencer because of the way it has established its business model while starting an online school. Spotify goes hand in hand with Pinlearn, a technology that facilitates virtual classrooms. Pinlearn is an immersive eLearning marketplace that allows teachers to connect with students virtually, so learning stays consistent, even outside the classroom. Loaded with exclusive personalisation features and a constellation of themes as perfect e-learning software for schools, every school now can create a digital identity. If you’re a school or educational institution, now give every teacher an exclusive profile on your school’s digital platform for starting an online school.
Spotify at School
Music helps in learning and school classrooms are no different. Add Spotify to the equation, and you’ve got a fantastic opportunity to create curated learning programmes even when planning for corporate e-learning solutions. Here’s what you can do:
● Create a Vocabulary Playlist
Whether it’s a native language class or a foreign language lesson, there’s no better way to learn grammar and new words than from a song. By creating a playlist and then inviting students to fill it with their own suggestions, you can encourage involvement too. Through Pinlearn, teachers can even connect with children during vacations and long breaks to see how they liked the song and to ensure that they don’t forget what they’ve learned so far. Dimelo, by Marc Anthony, for instance is a wonderful song to get students grooving to a new language. The song is steady and clearly enunciated, allowing little tykes to follow the words carefully.
● Create a Dance Mix
Ever noticed how you automatically pick up the lyrics of a song when it’s catchy? Pick a song with wholesome lyrics and add it to a playlist! You could even reserve a portion of your class for dancing, asking your students to sing along.
● Collect Inspiring Speeches
Spotify has a collection of speeches by eminent personalities and thought leaders. So, when you’re taking a lesson, either physically or on Pinlearn, you could plug relevant speeches into your story.
● Plug It into Pinlearn
Pinlearn is a great monetisation tool for schools, as a forum where teachers can conduct after-school classes for weaker students. Schools could charge parents for access to these courses, and the same audio method employed in the classroom via Spotify can be used here.
Spotify at University
Spotify’s model works on a subscription model, a framework being actively emulated by brick-and-mortar universities. The University of Michigan, for example, is thinking of offering downloadable lectures and teaching material at a nominal subscription fee. The university has been providing courses through Coursera for a while now, but hasn’t seen any favorable monetary outcome from it. Revenue from Massive Online Open Courses (MOOCs) is meagre, and subscription-based knowledge nuggets, seem to be a lucrative approach. The reality is that universities are facing competition from ed-tech startups, who have begun a trend of offering short courses in digestible formats. In 2016, Coursera started offering a paid variant of its eLearning service exclusively to institutions. FutureLearn, a UK based competitor of Coursera’s, has sealed similar collaborations with universities in the UK. But the future of universities really lies in becoming autonomous in their online offerings by setting up a platform of their own with a tool like Pinlearn. With your own platform, you don’t have to give a share of your revenue to the hosting website; you can scale your revenues exponentially this way.
Spotify has given birth to inventive ideas in ed tech of late. By bringing recreation and learning together, schools and institutions can pivot their teaching methodologies in keeping with online ed tech ventures while starting an online school. Everybody is finally on a level playing field.