Album covers have not changed much since the days of vinyl records, until now.
The advent of animated album cover art is here and in this post we give you the low down on everything you need to know.
They say don’t judge a book by it’s cover, but let’s be honest, we all do.
In the age of streaming there is more choice than ever but that makes standing out tricky. One thing every song that is released has is artwork. A striking cover image can be the difference between someone listening to your song or skipping right past it.
As music moved from physical formats to download stores and streaming platforms, the artwork stayed more or less the same, a square image (more on album cover art dimensions, here). Until now.
Animated album covers are starting to become much more prominent.
Where Can You Use Animated Cover Art with your music
Apple Music has slowly started to roll out animated cover art to key albums on their platform and we expect other platforms to follow suit pretty quickly.
Many new high-profile albums from major labels and classics from well known artists now have animated cover art on Apple Music.
As with all major features on streaming platforms, we expect the other music platforms to catch up quickly and to allow artists to upload their animated album covers. Spotify already have their animated Spotify Canvas’ (looping, full screen, vertical videos/animations that play on mobile during songs) so we expect Spotify might already also be looking into animated album covers.
Outside of the streaming platforms, animated cover art can be a key asset for music promotion, as live visuals and on social media.
You can even use your animated cover art on your music smart links to promote your music with Soundplate Clicks so your fans can see it before they choose which platform to stream your song on.
How to add animated cover art to your music smart link
When you are setting up the landing page or pre-save campaign for your next single, think about using animated album artwork to bring it to life!
With Soundplate Clicks, uploading animated cover artist simple, just follow the steps below:
- Create a smart link or pre-save campaign for your music (click here to learn how)
- Go to the bottom of the edit link page and upload a looping gif of your animation here:
- Save your link and and the animation will appear at the top of the smart link in place of your standard artwork:
12 Albums with animated cover art on Apple Music
Want some inspiration before you make your animated music cover art? Check out the list of albums with cool animated album covers on Apple Music below. There are loads more, this is just a small sample!
- Taylor Swift – ‘Folklore’ on Apple Music
- 21 Savage & Metro Boomin – ‘SAVAGE MODE II’ on Apple Music
- Lil Baby – ‘My Turn’ Deluxe on Apple Music
- Bad Bunny – ‘YHLQMDLG’ on Apple Music.
- Paul McCartney- ‘McCartney III’ on Apple Music
- Lil Uzi Vert – ‘Lil Uzi Vert Vs. The World’ on Apple Music
- Drake – ‘Dark Lane Demo Tapes’ on Apple Music
- Justin Bieber – ‘Justice’ on Apple Music
- Gorillaz – ‘Gorillaz’ on Apple Muisic
- Beyoncé – ‘Lemonade’ on Apple Music
- The Weeknd – ‘After Hours’ on Apple Music
- Marvin Gaye – ‘What’s Going On’ on Apple Music
Not all artists have the ability to upload animated artwork to Apple Music & Apple Music Classical yet but we expect the feature to rolled out more widely soon. In the meantime, you can use your animated cover art for social media marketing and on your smart links!
Music Streaming platforms are extremely competitive and typically once a feature becomes a big part of one of the main services the other soon follow. We expect to be able to upload animated album cover art to Spotify, Deezer, Amazon and other major streaming platforms in the near future!
Many animated covers are also adapted and used for animated Spotify canvas’ that can be uploaded to songs using Spotify for Artists.
Animated art is also commonly used for music NFT artwork which can also be promoted using Soundplate Clicks smart links, click here to find out more.
How to create Music Artwork
You can use our free cover designer to make aesthetic spotify playlist covers, album art etc.
Alternatively, you could hire a freelance designer to create your artwork, you can even find cheap animators to bring the artwork to life and have your very own animated cover art.
We are still in the very early stages of this new animated album cover format.
We expect there is more innovation in this space on the way from the big streaming platforms. The big takeaway for artists right now, is that there are changes coming to the album art format and to be ready to move with the times.
You can find great animators cheaply on freelance platforms like Fiverr, maybe think about animating your next album cover to bring it to life and stand out from the crowd.
Once you have your animation ready, don’t forget to upload it to your Soundplate Clicks smart link!