Thanks for this post, Maxwell! I was not aware of their usage of NLP to include and leverage text-based online information into their pool of data – really interesting approach to harvest additional data.
I feel that Spotify is in an interesting spot where they absolutely need to create and capture additional values through new products such as podcasts and concerts so that they do not rely fully on music streaming. I think music streaming itself will become a commodity product as there are not a lot of ways to distinguish yourself from your competitors because every platform has an almost identical music palette. Moreover, for some of Spotify’s biggest competitors, i.e. Apple and Amazon, music streaming is only a side business and they could strongly undercut Spotify’s prices while easily absorbing the resulting losses in music streaming with their other income streams.
Thank you for this interesting post, Alan! The improvements in Spotify’s recommendation algorithm have been impressive (anecdotally, I remember it almost being a meme how bad their recommendations were a few years back). I fully agree with your analysis that Spotify urgently needs to build new product/functionalities to distinguish themselves from their competitors as, in contrast to the movie/ tv show streaming ecosystem, all the music streaming providers offer the same music. Spotify Wrapped is a great success in that regard since they managed to turn into a cultural event where people actively share and send around screenshots of their Wrapped. Users of other platforms cannot participate in the fun and social interaction.
Thanks for this very interesting post, Stephen! Steering demand by promoting specific items depending on supply level at the stores really illustrates the value of having all your systems and data sources integrated and connected. I do wonder if we will end up seeing some customer attrition now that almost every store and chain on the planet has a corresponding app. I personally cannot see an endgame where customer have 10, 20 or even 30 brand-specific apps installed on their phone at the same time and let themselves be bombarded by the daily pop-ups that attempt to sell them something.
They say great minds think alike, Sebastiano 😉 I was about to start drafting my post about BlaBlaCar, when I saw that you had already covered them!
I used to book rides on BlaBlaCar quite frequently and they really provide an immense value especially when it comes to rides between cities that do not have a direct train connection. I agree (and personally experienced) that disintermediation is especially present in this setting and I am not sure it can be avoided. Drivers and passengers regularly commuting between two cities eventually get to know each other, build trust and then communicate outside the platform. Thus, I think BlaBlaCar broadening their offerings is a necessary move.