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Following the footsteps of Snapchat, Inc. and Facebook Messenger, Spotify now offers unique scannable codes for artists, songs or playlists. What an amazing opportunity for artists and labels to promote their music via creative outdoor ads!

The new Spotify Codes feature creates a unique barcode and album cover image for every song, album, artist, and playlist. When you scan these Spotify Codes with the new camera in the Spotify app’s search bar, you can instantly play that music.

What was situation up till now? If a friend is listening to a song and you want to hear it too, you have to get them to fish out a link, open a messaging app, send it to you then you open it in your browser before it deeplinks into Spotify.

What's the new situation? They tap the dots to show the code, you scan with the search camera and you’re listening. This is even more important since Spotifyditched its in-app messaging Inbox in February in favor of shortcuts to share via SMS, Messenger, WhatsApp and other chat apps.

Meanwhile, you can imagine artists printing vinyl stickers with their Spotify Codes instead of just their band name. Whereas a complicated Spotify URL would be unsightly and complicated to type in on mobile, the camera and soundwave-stylized codes look good and are easy to use.

Spotify Codes also could be a constant visual reminder around the web that you could be listening to on-demand music. Similar to how Facebook colonized the web with Like buttons, and Snapchat’s Snapcodes wound up as profile photos on Twitter and elsewhere, Spotify Codes could work to promote the streaming service itself, as well as the music to which they’re linked.

This kind of viral growth strategy could prove important to Spotify as it races Apple Music, Amazon, YouTube, SoundCloud and Pandora to turn radio and MP3 listeners into streamers. Considering how Apple and SoundCloud have copied Spotify’s wildly successful personalized playlist Discover Weekly, let's see if other streaming services make their own scannable song codes

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