Spotify buys photo aggregator CrowdAlbum to build more marketing tools for artists

Spotify has made another acquisition to build out the tools that it provides to artists who use Spotify’s streaming platform to grow their listeners and overall business. It has bought CrowdAlbum, a company that aggregates photos and videos from music events that have been shared on social media to create what it describes as “visual histories.”

Sometimes these hold a lot of poignancy, such as this one for Prince.

The terms of the deal have not been disclosed. CrowdAlbum, which has been around since 2013, had raised only $100,000 and it was based in San Francisco. It was in any case a small but influential company: it worked with some 1,000 artists and venue partners in its time, but they included Diplo, Death Cab for Cutie, Lil Wayne, and Fallout Boy.

Spotify says that it will be adding CrowdAlbum’s tools to its growing artillery of tools for artists who use Spotify as a marketing platform. It’s made other acquisitions in that vein, specifically buying Cord Project and Soundwave earlier this year. Products Spotify has launched include Spotify Fan Insights and Concerts.

Building more B2B services like this is smart for Spotify both as a way of attracting more musicians to the platform — also to counteract some of the memes around Spotify being a hotbed of lost revenues for artists — but also to compete against other streaming rivals that are also offering tools to artists. Others like Pandora and Soundcloud also offer analytics and other tools like messaging services to help musicians view how their music is being heard, control how their content is getting shared, and also speak with fans.

“We’re working every day to find ways to tighten the connection between artists and their fans,” said Charlie Hellman, VP Product at Spotify, in a statement. “The CrowdAlbum acquisition is the latest way Spotify is investing in helping artists find and engage their audiences on and off Spotify, especially around the ever important business of touring.”