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71% of Spotify Free listeners are aged under 35 – so how can marketers reach them?


By John Glenday | Reporter

July 13, 2021 | 4 min read

The power of audio to tap into senses other mediums just can’t reach has been laid bare in a new report by Spotify Advertising, which sets out how brands can capitalize on sound to reach millennial and gen Z audiences.


Spotify details how audio plays an intrinsic part in millennial and gen Z life

Solidifying this relationship with a welter of facts and figures, the latest edition of Culture Next proves that listening isn’t just a pleasurable way to pass the time, but a cornerstone of wellbeing.

Brands need to sit up and listen

  • Spotify is urging brands to be a part of the self-care routines of millennial and gen Z listeners by capitalizing on a growing reliance on sonic experiences to boost happiness such as positive attitude podcasts, ambient sound and even silence.

  • According to Spotify UK, gen Z feel ‘more centered and generally happier’ when tuning into their favorite musicians each day, offering a powerful avenue for marketers wishing to connect through digital audio.

  • Naturally, Spotify cites itself as a primary conduit for advertisers wishing to get their message across in this way, with 71% of Spotify Free listeners aged 35 and under, and the median age of podcast listeners being just 27.

  • This demographic neatly encapsulated the important gen Z and millennial market where the line between reality and virtual experiences has become increasingly blurred, with 60% of millennials considering audio to be the most immersive form of media.

  • In a statement the audio streamer wrote: “Spotify is the go-to authority on how gen Z and millennial audiences are consuming, curating and creating digital audio content. It’s how we know Olivia Rodrigo is the great uniter between gen Z and millennials, with Drivers License being the most streamed song by both generations on the Spotify ‘Top 50 – Global’ chart year-to-date.”

Spotify Advertising

  • To facilitate these efforts Spotify has created a self-serve ad platform, Ad Studio, to ease businesses gently into novel sonic experiences as part of their media portfolios.

  • Backed by real-time reporting on ad delivery, performance and audience breakdowns, the platform enables marketing messages to be delivered directly to the ears of listeners.

  • Focused on the burgeoning field of podcasts, the music app has also launched the Spotify Audience Network, which combines targeting tools with specific audience segments and contextual information to reach specific listeners.

  • Spotify also claims to be able to assist advertisers in understanding their target market through streaming intelligence to provide motivating messages, whether people are working out, cooking or partying.


  • Culture Next encapsulates the listening habits of audiences aged 15-25 (gen Z) and 26-40 (millennials).

  • Based on four Zoom focus groups, 40 interviews and a dozen ethnographies, the resulting report drew on the responses of over four dozen respondents from around the globe.

  • This was augmented by a survey of 9,000 respondents conducted by Lucid in April.

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