After a tough few years during which the sale of physical albums declined precipitously, the music industry seems to be making a relatively speedy recovery. This rebound has been assisted heavily by music companies' harnessing of analytics and big data. Here we look at six such analytics tools that are shaping the future of music marketing.
Guest post by Becky Holton
Information technologies have been changing all industries in the last couple of decades and music is not an exception here. After a serious downfall of album recording, it seems like the market is now recovering steadily.
According to the report, the US music industry hit the highest revenue mark in a decade. At the same time, the global music market generated around $51 billion in 2018. The biggest question is: How did the music industry manage to recover so quickly?
The answer lies in business intelligence. Today, almost every record label, streaming service, and even artist uses big data to analyze and understand how typical consumers behave and what they like. This gives music professionals valuable feedback that they can use to improve their marketing efforts and generate a higher profit in the long run.
It’s a major trend that takes the entire industry to the whole new level, so you need to figure out how big data helps music stakeholders to improve results. This post will explain to you how intelligence platforms change the music industry and show you six major analytics tools.
What Is Big Data and How It Changes Analytics
We already mentioned big data, but do you really know what it is? By definition, big data refers to a process that is used when traditional data mining and handling techniques cannot uncover the insights and meaning of the underlying data.
To put it simply, big data is a system that is able to draw meaningful conclusions out of seemingly unrelated information. Such an intelligence mechanism is extremely important because the average person is soon going to generate 1.7 megabytes of information every second.
Data production is growing so rapidly that 90% of the world’s data has been created in the last two years alone. It’s a huge information resource for the music industry, but only if you learn how to exploit enormous data volumes.
According to digital marketers at EssaysOnTime.com.au, big data has a plethora of practical implications, but the most significant functions are these:
- What consumers buy: Although some people (artists in particular) tend to forget this fact, music creation is like poster design or any other production process, so it really becomes a product in the end. Therefore, figuring out how and why consumers buy musical products is critical to the success of your marketing strategy. For instance, you can analyze user behavior to identify the most popular songs, add them to the concert list, and eliminate the ones that could make your show less interesting.
- Music charts analysis: This is another example of how big data boost the music industry. Namely, a lot of producers look at top-selling songs or albums and then make the next move accordingly. For example, they can suggest promoting more singles from the same album, releasing an alternative version of the same song, or simply creating a lookalike album very soon.
- Personalization: Big data takes personalization to the levels we couldn’t even imagine only a decade ago. Remember all those YouTube recommendations and playlists? Well, they are based on data analysis and designed so as to match your personal needs and the entire history of your interactions with the platform.
6 Music Platforms That Use Big Data Analytics
Big data as a concept sounds perfect, but does it really work? The shortest answer is: Yes, it does. There are countless examples of how big data influences music-related decisions, but we selected six platforms that stand out here. Let’s check them out:
As the world’s largest video-sharing platform, YouTube is the starting point for every musician. Craig Mathews, a CMO at AustralianWritings, explains it briefly: “YouTube has a wide range of analytics features, with the basic ones being subscriber reports and watch times. However, I believe that the most useful functions are playback locations, traffic sources, and demographic reports.”
This on-demand music service is known for its powerful analytics, but it’s not a surprise given the fact that Spotify handles millions of listeners each minute. The platform detects all sorts of details, from device types to which playlists are attracting fresh followers. That way, Spotify is able to design the Discover Weekly function that generates a new playlist for each subscriber based on their specific interests.
- Apple Music
As another industry giant, Apple Music is also focused on using big data for service improvements. However, this platform takes a leap forward by testing new options content-wise. They analyze user preferences and try to create similar but exclusive content. No wonder their role model is Netflix.
SoundCloud is like social media for musicians and their fans. It gives users the opportunity to download, like, and share songs, but it also gives followers a chance to write comments and leave suggestions.
Sound engineers at Edugeeksclub.com use SoundCloud and they say that the platform uses big data to analyze all interactions and provide clients with in-depth reports about consumer behavior: “What we like about SoundCloud is that it allows you to create periodical reports and compare different timeframes.”
- Social media
Speaking of SoundCloud, it would not be wise to skip the real social platforms like Facebook. These networks also come with a comprehensive reporting kit, so it’s easy to discover the needs, trends, and requirements of your audience.
Analyzing over 450 attributes per song, Pandora delves deep into the heart of musicianship. It allows the platform to rearrange playlists in real time and improve personalization and discovery. Needless to say, it also helps Pandora to increase advertising revenue.
The music industry has been going through drastic changes since the mid-1990s. The technology that seemed to threaten the music market is now helping it revitalize and reach new heights thanks to the power of big data intelligence.
As a musician, you can use analytics to your advantage by evaluating users’ behavior and listeners’ preferences. The platforms we described can help you do that, so don’t hesitate to utilize these tools and maximize the potential of your music-making business.---
Becky Holton is a journalist and a blogger at Assignmentgeek.com.au. She is interested in education technologies and is always ready to support informative speaking at Aussiewritings.com. Follow her on Twitter.