Music and influencer marketing #6 : Streaming is frictionless!

There has been a lot of complains about how little streaming services pay. Our point here is not at all to take sides by comparing them and their per stream. Others already do that very well.

What I just want to outline is that streaming services have been able to offer a credible alternative to piracy. Thanks to their growth, recorded music revenues are back to where they were in 2008.

So let’s give them credit for that!

But that’s not the point. To my mind the revolution streaming services finished to achieve is elsewhere: Engagement = Sales

In the old world (that so many people are missing) you had to promote and market your music and hope that the people you targeted were willing to buy it.

Since the beginning of digital, everything has changed.

It begun with iTunes and piracy.

When you discovered a track you liked, you were a few click away from getting it legally or not. The issue was that people had very little reason to pay for the music since the user experience was almost the same, paying or not.

Anyway Apple managed to gather a very impressing amount of loyal customers on iTunes.

Then YouTube thrived and became the main way to get your music discovered and listened to. You were getting paid for every view you had.

That was it, there was no gap between discovery and sales anymore. Fans were engaging with the music and thus creating revenue for the artist.

Then, the level of payment became the problem. Since YouTube is an ad-founded service it was nowhere near what subscription based services like Spotify and Deezer were able to offer.

That’s the last boundary we crossed a few years ago. Your targeted audience was literally one click away from creating revenue for the artist.

I’ll leave the value gap argument to licensing experts.

What’s great here is that streaming services opened a new era where music can be accessed, discovered, stored and shared so easily that you can have a truly frictionless experience.

Thanks to this frictionless experience we were able to create our “In the head of…” playlist and witness satisfying engagement rates.

It changes from one social network to another but we have an engagement rate (people opening our link and accessing the playlist) between 5 and 15%.

The beauty of this is that labels don’t need us to get a reporting on the operation. Thanks to the data they get from streaming services they monitor directly the impact of the operation. Of course we provide additional data, specially on social content’s engagement.

And that’s the only criticism I would make.

Streaming services could encourage activities such as ours by opening slightly the features they offer to major labels or even expending them.

It means offering them when available or developing them when missing (but they hate to get outsiders advices on their roadmap).

Those two would already make a big difference if available.

– clickable link in playlist descriptions

– proper notifications sent to playlist followers when updated

The social component of the platforms is often underestimated by streaming services. They are more interested in getting their teams’ recommendations delivered to their users.

They had to open the system to major labels for obvious reasons, but our belief is that the more opened to third parties is the platform the more stream and engagement you’ll get.

And there’s one rule everybody agrees on: engagement is loyalty.

Have a good week-end.

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