New Data: Trends in Music and Video Consumption

By Scott Kirsner |  March 15, 2024

At the annual South by Southwest conference in Austin on Friday, Luminate CEO Rob Jonas offered an overview of how music and video consumption changed in 2023. Luminate collects data about the entertainment industry, and it recently released a year-end report that Jonas’ presentation was based on. Ten highlights — including the growing influence of platforms like Discord and TikTok — are below.

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Luminate CEO Rob Jonas at South by Southwest.

1. Global on-demand song audio song streaming in 2023 increased 22 percent over 2022, and it grew 50 percent percent over 2021 levels. In the US, the year-over-year growth was 12.7 percent. “The streaming trend is just not slowing down,” Jonas said.

Three genres were important in driving that growth:

• World (including K-Pop and Afro beat)

• Latin (more an more non-Spanish speakers are listening to Latin music)

• Country 

2. Netflix remains the market leader when it comes to creating the most popular streaming video content, but other platforms are catching up. Other networks, like Amazon Prime and Paramount, are beginning to show up in Luminate’s weekly “Top 10” list.

3. Globally, the share of English language content is declining across music and video.

4. Whatsapp, Reddit, Discord, videogames, and movie soundtracks are some of the ways young listeners now discover new music.

5. Gen Z music streamers are 50 percent more likely than the average music streamer in the US to discover new music via TikTok, Snapchat, and Instagram Reels. In Gen Alpha (just turning 16 this year), the top three sources of music discovery are slightly different: TikTok, YouTube Shorts, and Snapchat.

6. “A Super Fan is really considered to be the next wave of growth for the music industry,” Jonas said. Eighteen percent of music listeners in the US are Super Fans; they engage with artists and their music in several different ways (buying merchandise, streaming, engaging on social platforms, attending concerts, etc.) They spend 68 percent more on music, and 128 percent more on merchandise, than the average music listener in the US.

7. Recent music makes up 48 percent of US on-demand audio streaming (music released between 2019 and 2023). But older music can still show up, with 100 million-plus streams. (Fleetwood Mac’s “Dreams” from 1977 had 283 million streams last year.)

8. Consumption of music by female artists was up four percent in 2023 over 2022 — driven by Miley Cyrus and Taylor Swift. That’s part of a consistent upward trend in recent years. Speaking of Taylor Swift… Her music counted for 1.7 percent of all US audio streaming in 2023.

9. “It’s been impossible to ignore the live music industry’s spectacular resurgence post-Covid,” Jonas said. Streaming consumption is now correlated to ticket sales. “It’s becoming a really important signal to understand…” Jonas said.

10. If you’ve ever listened to white noise or bird sounds on Spotify, that’s a category that Luminate has dubbed NEAR: Nature, noise, effects, ambient, relaxation, and sounds. That category of non-music now represents three to four percent of all music existing on streaming platforms.