12 Days of Data 2023 Day 12 Top Songs on Spotify Playlists

12 Days of Data 2023 Day 12: Top Songs on Spotify Playlists


Welcome to the 12 Days of Data 2023 Edition, our look back at the data that made marketing in 2023. We’re looking at the year that was (and oh, what a year it was, something we’ve been saying for four years straight now…) from an analytics perspective to see what insights we can take into the next year. Sit up, get your beverage of choice ready, and let’s celebrate some data and look forward to the year ahead.

Spotify Wrapped, Planetary Edition

One of the amazing things about publicly available marketing data is just how many different uses there are for it. We use marketing data all the time for content ideation, optimization, trend forecasting, and so on, but we rarely stop to think just how much data is available to us. As a fun illustration of this for the last day of the 12 Days of Data, let’s look at the top songs on Spotify Playlists.

Every Spotify playlist has the same URL structure – open.spotify.com/playlist/id, where id is an encoded string of letters and numbers. Every time someone shares a link to a Spotify playlist publicly on a web page, in a forum, or on social media, data collection tools like SEO tools can see that. So we did what was natural and downloaded hundreds of thousands of links to Spotify playlists to see what people are sharing most.

Our criteria for selection was simple: the page that linked to the list had to be published in 2023. That doesn’t guarantee the list was made in 2023, but at the least we know the page referencing it was, since Spotify lists themselves contain very little publicly-accessible metadata.

Key Statistics : Playlists

First, how many playlists are we talking about? In 2023, we were able to spot 505,916 unique links to Spotify playlists that hadn’t been seen before this year.

Top Spotify Playlist Landing Pages

From those, we sampled the top 70,362 based on traffic to the landing page the playlist was on.

Top Spotify Playlist URLs

The top 5 most linked playlists?

  1. DJ Sheriff‚ Kopf aus_Musik an, 19508 links
  2. Thaurus‚ Label | Mngmnt | Booking | Publishing, 15298 links
  3. Fotogalerij | Popronde 2023, 6331 links
  4. Vibe Fesztival, 4414 links
  5. INXS, Australian Songwriters Conference, 4054 links

So those were the individual playlists that did the best this year.

Key Statistics : Songs

If we add up every unique song on those 70,000 lists, what were the most listed songs of 2023?

Top Songs of 2023

In the top 10 most-listed songs of 2023:

  1. The Weeknd/Blinding Lights, 1239 listings
  2. Harry Styles/As It Was, 1162 listings
  3. David Guetta, Bebe Rexha/I’m Good (Blue), 1145 listings
  4. Miley Cyrus/Flowers, 1130 listings
  5. Elton John, Dua Lipa/Cold Heart, 1029 listings
  6. Glass Animals/Heat Waves, 916 listings
  7. Queen/Don’t Stop Me Now, 887 listings
  8. Fleetwood Mac/Dreams, 865 listings
  9. Dua Lipa/Don’t Start Now, 861 listings
  10. Earth, Wind & Fire/September, 855 listings

Note that just because a song is most listed in 2023 doesn’t mean that song was released in 2023. Many of these songs are… quite earlier than 2023. In fact, judging by the songs on the list, it’s fair to say that people who share playlists publicly, in ways that can be detected by search engines, definitely fall in the Gen X generation if the music is any guide.

That brings us to the top artists of 2023. Which artists overall were most listed in 2023?

Top Artists of 2023

In the top 10 most-listed musical artists of 2023:

  1. Taylor Swift, 22411 listings
  2. The Beatles, 14526 listings
  3. Drake, 12736 listings
  4. Tillted702, 10157 listings
  5. The Rolling Stones, 9987 listings
  6. The Weeknd, 9905 listings
  7. Ed Sheeran, 9581 listings
  8. David Bowie, 9471 listings
  9. Queen, 9270 listings
  10. Coldplay, 8293 listings

So What?

Even though this is a fun exploration, it still underscores the very real fact that creating data-driven content is within your reach. Publicly available data makes it straightforward to find information, process it with your own unique point of view or twist, and share it with an interested audience.

As we enter 2024, the demand for new, unique content will only increase, across many different channels and formats. If you’ve got a marketing program that needs to capture people’s attention in different ways, leveraging the power of media that already exists combined with data that you’re willing to invest in processing will generate unique results, results that others will talk about.

This concludes the 2023 edition of the 12 Days of Data. Thanks for reading it, sharing it, and using ideas from it to improve your own marketing.


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