There’s a playlist fitting for any situation or mood and now, you can have one based on your genetic makeup. Genealogy company Ancestry enlisted streaming music leader Spotify to help curate playlists based on one’s AncestryDNA test results.

“It’s so much more than the stats and the data and the records,”says Vineet Mehra, CMO at Ancestry. “How do we help people experience their culture and not just read about it? Music seemed like an obvious way to do that.”

Ancestry’s $100 in-home, saliva based DNA tests can help people uncover their family trees and pinpoint their origins to over 350 regions in the world. By linking users’ Spotify accounts, the streaming platform could then create a personalized playlist with songs based on both existing music tastes and the cultures that make up one’s family tree.  The hope is to encourage Ancestry’s users to explore the soundtrack of the heritage. 

Spotify x Ancestry

Though operating in totally different spaces, both Spotify and Ancestry could benefit from the brand partnership. Over 10 million people have taken an AncestryDNA test, providing Spotify with a humongous marketable audience to tap in a extremely competitive streaming landscape. During its last quarterly earnings call, Spotify reported 83 million subscribers paid for its service, a 14% increase from the previous quarter. It’s a leading number, but Apple Music is quickly gaining ground with 40 million paid subs. There’s an intense customer acquisition battle, as all streaming platforms, from Spotify, Apple Music, Tidal, Youtube etc, are constantly expanding its content libraries and user experiences to capture ears and dollars. On the other side, this is an interesting promotional push for Ancestry. The company probably has a low customer retention rate (how many DNA tests do you really need?), so finding new customers is a key business driver, and Spotify has more than a few. 

It’s interesting that Spotify already has a vast wealth of data on what it’s users are listening to (even focusing an ad campaign around this), so now it’ll have a new layer of personal information in its hands. 

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Rex Pham

Originally from the Bay Area, who then moved to Los Angeles, then out to New York City. NYU Stern MBA c/o 2014. Inspired by the grind of NYC to create something that has value. Lover of all things digital, culture, and brand strategy.

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