ReverbNation Expands Music Distribution Service

Reverbnation_100x100 EXCLUSIVE ReverbNation launched an expanded digital music distribution platform this morning and the company's co-founder and COO Jed Carlson shared the details with Hypebot.

HYPBOT:  I'm sure it was a long night getting ready for today's launch. Can you introduce the new ReverbNation digital distribution products for our readers.

Reverb Digital Distribution CARLSON:  In addition to iTunes, Amazon, Rhapsody, eMusic, and Napster, we’ve added 29 more including Spotify, Last.fm, MySpace Music, Zune, Wal-Mart, Lala, iLike, MOG, and Pandora and bundled them into two packages: Essentials and the Pro.  Each package is priced as a flat annual fee of $34.95 to $59.95 per year. (Details below after the jump.)

What hasn't changed is that artists continue to keep 100% of the royalties from sales and, where applicable, streams of their music.  Our deal is still non-exclusive and we take no ownership rights over their music.  All of our existing distribution customers who want it receive a free upgrade to the ‘Essentials’ package.

HYPEBOT: How does this offering compare to TuneCore or now Zimbalam?

CARLSON:  It compares very favorably to all of the pure-play digital distribution companies.  When I last checked their websites, TuneCore was submitting music to 17 retailers and Zimbalam to 25, while we can now submit to 39.  But, despite our current lead in the number of stores, we continue to believe that Artists should use ReverbNation because of our superior tools for driving fans to buy their products – not just for how many distribution placements we deliver. 

HYPEBOT:  Does ReverbNation guarantee that Artists who buy the Pro package will be included in Pandora? 

CARLSON: None of the destination sites guarantee placement of music submitted by any distributor, including us.  They all reserve the right to refuse a release based on their own standards of quality, etc.

HYPEBOT: Do Artists get paid for streams?

CARLSON: Yes, from some sites.  MySpace Music, Pandora, Last.fm, and Napster all pay per stream on music supplied by distribution products like ours.  Artists who want to collect royalties from Pandora or Last.fm need to be signed up to SoundExchange to receive them.

HYPEBOT: Do you report sales to SoundScan?  Some of your competitors do not.

CARLSON: Yes, sales of music distributed through ReverbNation are reported to SoundScan.

HYPEBOT: Why has ReverbNation taken the more difficult to achieve one-stop-shop approach to artist services, vs focusing on a single element like distribution?

CARLSON: Having strong long-term relationships with the Artists is the key to success in our business, and that means delivering value to them from their earliest days in the garage all the way to when they’re playing international tours.  We believe that the company who delivers the most value to the Artists will be the one that develops the best long-term relationships with the Artists. 

To ReverbNation, the one-stop-shop approach is critical to creating more value in a number of ways. First is with lower prices. We spread our overhead across many different product lines like email services, distribution, web hosting, digital press kits,  e-commerce, widgets/apps, etc.  As a result, we can keep our products affordable, and in some cases free.

Our products are integrated into one powerful 360 degree marketing ‘cockpit’ that allows the artists to execute and track comprehensive campaigns instead of trying to divine whether or not the email they sent last week had any impact on their t-shirt sales or friend counts. We also offer convenience. It’s all in one place at ReverbNation.  Artists don’t have a lot of time to run their business and we get that.

New Digital Music Distribution Packages

Essentials:  $34.95/release per year

iTunes (Aus/NZ)    Spotify
iTunes (Canada)    iLike 
iTunes (Japan)    eMusic
iTunes (Mexico)    Napster
iTunes (UK/Europe)    Rhapsody
iTunes (US)    Tesco 
Amazon Mp3    Zune
MySpace Music    Last.fm
MOG      Guvera
Synacor      Fox News 
GetPlaylists      GetGreenMusic
Immergent    Intertech Media 
InMotion Entertainment      La Curacao 
Secure Media      Moozone 

Pro Package (includes all “Essentials”, plus these):  $59.95/release per

Wal-Mart (Liquid)
Puretracks (digital jukebox)
Think indie (CIMS/Junketboy)
Amie Street

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  1. Still not as good as my distributor, AWAL. They go to 130 stores, and charge no up front fees for doing so. Can’t see why anyone would do this, with only 37 stores? (And they count the different iTunes stores around the world as individual stores.) Look at all that AWAL go to: http://www.awal.com/content/stores

  2. Hey, why don’t you even mention CDBaby in your biased interview? They are a better deal than Tunecore – which to me nickels and dimes you. CD Baby is a flat fee and that is it – no annual charges. If you don’t re-up with Tunecore or ReverbNation they drop you completely. Not the case with CD Baby – you pay about $55 one time fee including bar code and you are there forever. Tunecore’s business model assumes certain amounts of dropouts, I assume. I don’t trust that company for some reason. I like ReverbNation and wish they had a one time fee approach – but companies do like annuities don’t they, even if it is at the long run expense of the artist.

  3. CD Baby charges an ongoing 9% of sales in addition to an up front cost of $55 if you need a UPC. That’s their ‘annuity’.
    DIY distributors fighting on price = Artists win as long as the distro company stays in business (see Watunes announcement today).
    Tunecore will likely be the big loser in a price war, as distro is their only line of business, unlike CD Baby and Reverb.

  4. If you are looking for a wider coverage then http://www.dittomusic.com have been distributing to hundreds of stores for a long time, and are considerably cheaper.
    They also cover loads of new stores like Sky Songs and Mflow, as well as all of the above.

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