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Alex Quin is CMO of award-winning Digital Marketing firm UADV. He is a full-stack marketing expert, global keynote speaker & podcast host.
In today’s competitive music market, there is no shortage of creativity, opportunity and innovation.
Because of setbacks in touring and shutdowns of concert venues, the music industry took a big hit in income from tour merchandising, live appearances and ticket sales. All of these factors typically make up a sizeable portion of revenue in the industry.
As a result of the current global venue restrictions, first movers in various markets are innovating and envisioning a bright future ahead for the entertainment industry. Marketing professionals, labels, distribution companies and artists are pivoting to new methods of distributing and marketing.
Opportunity Is Around the Corner
As of August 2020, Facebook added a “Music” tab to its “Watch” menu and now allows artists to add a music video library to their page. This opened up the door for changes that will forever impact the music industry.
In March 2021, Billboard announced it will soon consider Facebook video streams into its chart calculations for licensed music videos.
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This all comes at a time when Facebook has challenges of its own. With Apple’s new iOS 14 privacy updates, Facebook and Instagram pixel tracking and retargeting performance have been drastically affected. Facebook users will now be able to opt-out of advanced retargeting capabilities. This is a massive blow to Facebook’s ad revenue. At the same time, TikTok is dominating the music industry by creating a wave of creative content distribution based around musical content.
What does this mean?
Billboard’s decision to consider Facebook video streams for its global charts could not have come at a better time for Facebook and potentially Instagram. Their global community and ad platform is now a ticket to every musical artist’s dream — the Billboard charts.
But here’s the catch. Facebook is not the only one that stands to benefit here. Professionals in the music industry who have nurtured an audience on Facebook (because they saw this coming) will benefit greatly. Others who haven’t taken full advantage, but understand the platform and can quickly adapt, will also reap the benefits.
What are artists and music marketers doing?
For some time now, one of Billboard’s chart-topping music labels, Rich Music, has used Facebook data to its advantage to advance its global artist lineup. One of its artists, Dalex, recently connected with the Facebook Partnerships team to amplify his social media presence. This is a great example of how other artists can take advantage of these platforms:
• Content Distribution: Cross-distribute content on both channels but also diversify your content mix from videos and photos to Facebook live sessions, teasers and announcements.
• Fan Engagement: As an artist, it is important to spend time engaging with your audience. One way artists can captivate fans is through creating their own Facebook group where they can create more authentic connections.
• Live Streams: With a pause on concert tours and meet and greets, fans are craving for a chance to see their favorite artist perform like they used to. Using Facebook Live, artists can sit down for a Q&A session.
Using these strategies, Dalex saw a 248% increase in followers and a 110% increase in video views on Facebook compared to the previous 12 months. (Remember what I said about the video views and Billboard?)
What does this mean for consumers?
Behind the scenes, the industry is growing at a rapid rate in new directions. As a result, tech companies like Twitch and interactive virtual reality experiences like Facebook’s Oculus are expanding music into the metaverse. For example, Facebook’s “Venues” project will soon allow users to enjoy a live concert on their Oculus headset.
How is this monetizable?
Monetizing music with Facebook will most likely take place with an omnichannel approach. Bringing together Facebook, Instagram, Messenger, Oculus and WhatsApp could allow for integrated marketing campaigns to flourish in music marketing.
There are other ways to monetize this shift, too. Let’s talk about Billboard’s announcement earlier in March. Just a week later, Rolling Stone reported that Kings of Leon would be releasing an album as a non-fungible token (NFT), along with many other celebrity artists.
An NFT lives on a blockchain. These tokens act as a certificate of ownership for a digital asset. For example, your concert ticket is a certificate of ownership for your space at a concert. Celebrity musical artists have already jumped aboard the NFT train and have released exclusive goods — from new singles or tracks to collectible one-of-one digital art. NFTs mark another avenue for revenue in the music industry — one that’s in its infancy.
What does the future of music and marketing look like?
The possibilities are endless. Virtual concerts, digital assets and merchandising opportunities are in for a crazy ride. Brands will undoubtedly be able to have paid placements in these virtual interactions, thus creating job opportunities in multiple related markets.
Picture this: Three years from now, you may see a Facebook ad from one of your favorite artists. It’s announcing a virtual concert that is available on Oculus virtual headsets and other mobile devices. There is a big title sponsor organizing the event. You click on the ad, purchase the concert tickets and attend virtually with your friends wherever they may be.
Leading up to the event, you and your friends are all being retargeted with ads on either Facebook, Instagram, Messenger, WhatsApp, or even all of the above. You are immersed in a world of cool experiences like interacting with artists, purchasing merchandise and sharing with your friends.
“Loved the concert experience? You can purchase exclusive moments, meet & greets or rare merch with non-fungible tokens.”
These types of experiences would be groundbreaking for artists who continue to innovate online — all while growing a fanbase on a platform whose views are considered for Billboard chart-streaming data.
Only time will tell how it all plays out and what other opportunities may arise for the growth of the music industry.
Forbes Agency Council is an invitation-only community for executives in successful public relations, media strategy, creative and advertising agencies. Do I qualify?
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Author: Alex Quin, Forbes Councils Member
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