Tiny Desk Contest Activates Millions Across On Air, Digital and In-Person

September 2023

NPR Music’s Tiny Desk Contest, the annual search for the next great undiscovered artist to play a Tiny Desk Concert, entered its ninth, bigger than ever year in January. Musicians from around the country submitted nearly 6,000 entries to the Contest, marking a 38% increase in entries from 2022.

The 2023 Contest winner, Little Moon, taped their very own Tiny Desk Concert at NPR’s headquarters in Washington, DC and embarked on a sold out eight-stop, cross-country tour, celebrating with fans in Los Angeles, San Francisco, Seattle, Atlanta, Philadelphia, Brooklyn, Chicago and Houston.

Tiny Desk Contest content highlights illustrate the growing popularity of NPR Music’s flagship programming.


more first-day entries versus 2022


increase in submissions versus 2022


artists featured on NPR’s platforms

Capital One, the 2023 Tiny Desk Contest presenting sponsor, and Guayaki Yerba Mate, the Contest’s supporting sponsor, aligned with every extension of the seven-month-long Contest, from messages soliciting entries on air and via NPR’s digital platforms, to announcing a Contest winner and joining them on the 8-stop Tiny Desk Contest On the Road tour.

Sponsor branding was ever-present as fans navigate Tiny Desk Contest content across NPR and NPR Music platforms.


Impressions across radio


Impressions across digital (+5.9M vs 2022)


Impressions across social, web, press and newsletter

Sponsors joined Tiny Desk Contest on the road, bringing engaging on-site activations to each of the eight tour stops featuring Tiny Desk Contest talent. Sponsor activations on-site included on-site branding, co-branded swag for giveaway, a co-branded Tiny Desk photo booth, and on-stage thank-you’s from the NPR Music team. 

This year, National Public Media worked with our sponsors to activate beyond the traditional sponsor placements at the Tiny Desk Contest tour. Capital One was able to reach music lovers through an inaugural ticket pre-sale, giving Capital One cardholders access to purchase tickets before the general public. Guayaki Yerba Mate activated drink samples and brand education at all 8 tour-stops, connecting NPR Music fans to their product. 

Tiny Desk On The Road Tour engaged thousands!


Total attendees, +187% over estimates

8 of 8

Sold-out venues

In 2024, NPR Music will be celebrating the 10th anniversary of the Tiny Desk Contest! Special content reflecting the impact of the program will air on NPR’s channels in addition to the tenth installment of the Contest. National Public Media is excited to join this celebration with our sponsors. 

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