By Jason Spitz (@jasonspitz), an e-commerce expert who helps bands, comedians, and other artists build direct-to-fan businesses.
1. Shopping Habits
One big bottleneck to reaching the full potential of direct-to-fan is the audience’s shopping habits. Music consumers have learned that iTunes and Amazon offer a smooth, seamless shopping experience with reliable fulfillment.
Reed MIDEM today announced that Midem 2014 has been rescheduled to 1-4 February. Learning of the strong chance that the Grammy Awards will take place on the January 26th next year, to avoid key televised sports events, Midem organizers decided to reschedule the date of the 2014 international music business trade event.
Yala Music, the leading Arabic based music service, this week announced the launch of Yala Backstage, a free social media marketing platform designed to capture and monetize social media audiences focused around YouTube. Yala Backstage builds on the services offered to major Arabic music stars by Yala on a more individualized basis, and is open to all.
SoundCloud has hired Dan Gerber, previously the National
Director of Strategic Partnerships at Pandora, to head brand revenues. Gerber will start in June, and SoundCloud
will open it's first ever New York City office later this summer.
Music blogs are an interesting sector, one that continues to evolve with the artists that they cover. I have several friends and colleagues who know a lot about where music blogs came from and where they might be going. So I asked them this question: How has the music blogging and curation landscape changed in recent years? Talk about some of these changes and then bring us into present day. What does that landscape look like right now?
DC based musician Mark Charles Heidinger and his project Vandaveer are known for an reflective alt-folk sound and memorable performances both here and abroad. For an upcoming show at the small but mighty Kirk Avenue Music Hall in Roanoke, VA (admittedly one of my favorite place to see live music), the band produced a ridiculously simple yet very effective 6 second video for Twitter's Vine.
It's all abut serving the fan, and small drones is the solution for one music festival. Set to make their first appearance at the OppiKoppi fest in South Africa, these flying drones will keep festival goers from leaving the pit just to wait in line for the next brew.
An assortment of recent music videos were promoted or described as having racy material but, despite a selection that includes the old guard, David Bowie, the young contender, Jack Conte, and a crowdsourced world of cursors, an air of disappointment reigns. Certainly no attempts here to shock anyone that doesn't have their shock button set on automatic.
A few weeks ago YouTube released a creators guide for musicians who use YouTube. There are a lot of points worth noting amongst those 40 pages. If you'd like to know more about to get the most out of your YouTube music experience but don't have time to do all the reading, check out the 9 highlights Jesse Cannon outlines on Music Think Tank.
YouTube's new subscription channels, a cable tv for the web, launched yesterday with two music channels on board, Qello (HD concert films and music documentaries) and Rap Battle Network. They're two of the more interesting looking channels in YouTube's odd assortment that seems to be angling for Middle America. Hopefully we'll soon be seeing more music channels exploring this potential revenue stream.
(UPDATED) In the new "Instumental Touch" tv ad for Delta Faucets’ Touch2O Technology, Wilco percussionist Glenn Kotche plays a a bevy of faucet The spot shows of Delta's touch it and the water turns on and off faucet tech, but sadly, not much of Kotche's considerable skill.
(UPDATED) Universal Music Group has agreed to license it's catalog to Apple's iRadio streaming music services, according to reports. Apple has apparently dropped requests that it be charged a lower rate in exchange for a share of ad revenue, and opted for the .125 cent rate that Pandora pays, according the the Financial Times.
I've never taken a strong interest in Pandora’s performance on the stock market, because I mainly write about music products and behavioral trends. What I've noticed, though, is how the company's IPO changed how media outlets talk about digital music services. Rather than talk about the product features or listener trends, people often talk solely about the viability of the business model and debate whether the company can survive in an increasingly competitive landscape. The stock market appears to dislike any moment that a new music service debuts, because it raises doubt that Pandora can succeed. Once news that Twitter planned to enter the digital music sector broke, shares took a plunge.
A recent post on the Priceonomics Blog looked at "The Business of Phish" with a focus on the early years of Phish's steady development and the eventual emergence of Phish as an improvisationally-oriented jamband and touring phenomenon. Along the way they hit three touchstone concepts of contemporary tech and marketing that are well-illustrated by musicians at work.
The RIAA today made a rare change to the formula used to certify Gold and Platinum awards to include on-demand music and video streams. Services that will now count towards certification include Spotify, Rhapsody, MOG, Muve, Rdio, Rhapsody, Slacker, Xbox Music, VEVO, MTV.com, YouTube and Yahoo! Music.
By Frank Woodworth (@GlacialConcepts), Director of Business Development at Thrillcall, a concert discovery and ticketing platform for web and mobile apps.
The most interesting shift in listener habits to me is that YouTube has become the go to source for music discovery, and consequently an important source of revenue. In most of my conversations with labels and distributors YouTube is the number three source of revenue behind physical sales and iTunes.
Soundrop, a Spotify app that shares a big investor with Spotify, says it alone has the ability to scale listening rooms up so that thousands of people can listen to the same song together at the same time, using a secret sauce called Erlang — a hyper-efficient coding language developed by Ericsson for use on big telecom infrastructures (updated).
BeatStars, a retail and services site for beatmakers and producers, is hosting a series of free BeatStars Seminars on the web next week from May 13 to 17. Topics include distribution, live events, music creation, marketing and label operations with a variety of speakers. Hypebot readers can also have a free trial of BeatStars membership.