TikTok is less important for music than thought!

TikTok is less important for music than thought!

A new report by IFPI shows that fewer people watched short-form videos (TikTok, Reels, Shorts …) with music in 2022 than last year.
In 2022, we listened to music for an average of 20.1 hours per week. Last year, the figure was 18.4 hours. Countries that clearly surpass that average include India (25.7 hours), China (28.3 hours), Indonesia (27.2 hours) and Nigeria (30.4 hours).

In an average week, we listen most to paid audio streaming services like Spotify Premium or Apple Music. Video streaming platforms like YouTube are in 2nd place, and radio still takes a notable third place globally. Overall, an average respondent listens to music in more than 6 different ways. Unfortunately, 30% of respondents still admit to using illegal sources to listen to or purchase music.

Audio streaming thus remains the most popular way to consume music and is even slightly more popular than last year. If we look at the time people spend on an audio streaming platform, it is even an increase of 10%. As many as 75% of respondents said they had used an audio streaming service (paid or free with ads) in the month before the survey (June-September 2022).

Luistermix op weekbasis - bron: IFPI

Half of those surveyed used a platform for so-called short-form videos in the month before the survey, i.e. short videos like the ones we find mainly on TikTok. Just under two-thirds (63%) of the time on those platforms was spent on music-related videos. That is an incredibly large amount and may therefore indicate that TikTok is playing a huge role in music consumption and discovery (despite mounting criticism of the royalties they pay out). At least, that is the impression we got from all the coverage over the past year. But the figures contradict that somewhat. In 2021, music-related videos still accounted for 68% of user time on TikTok and co. Whereas short-form video still accounted for 11% of the weekly mix in 2021, that dropped to 8% in 2022. Longer (music) videos, e.g. on YouTube, also did slightly less well in 2022 than the year before. So we watched fewer music-related videos on a screen, but enjoyed live concerts more again this year (from 2% in an average week in 2021 to 4% now), listened to the radio slightly more, put on our own music collection slightly more and streamed slightly more.

Finally, gaming appears to be a key driver for listening to music. 44% of gamers visited a virtual concert on a gaming platform (think Fortnite, Roblox etc.) in the 3 months prior to the survey. Gamers’ interest in virtual live music has increased significantly compared to 2021 when 33% of gamers reported having attended a concert on a gaming platform.

The full IFPI report Engaging with Music 2022 can be downloaded here.