03 Oct 12 Beating the drum for music analytics

There is no industry where a consumer’s opinion matters more than the music industry, where the fan base drives popularity and sales. Over the last five years, musicians have opened direct dialog with this base using a myriad of social media channels. Fans also use these social networks to discuss their favorite songs and artists. The music industry represents a potential clientele for Analytics service providers which can track these discussions in real time, supplying record labels, broadcasters, marketing and ad agencies with data on artist popularity and influence based on fan opinions and interactions. This information can be used by key segments in the music industry to plan a strategy for targeted marketing campaigns and optimize existing campaigns.

People discuss music on a variety of social networks, and analytics service providers can gather different data points depending on the channel used. Some of the popular social media platforms are:

•    MySpace
•    Last.fm
•    Facebook
•    Twitter
•    YouTube

The information gathered from these channels is not limited to the number of followers, but also the number of comments, page views, and comments. Text analysis can be further performed on the latter to deduce the positive or negative tone of the conversation. Additional analysis includes geographical information of the fans, and even demographic information.

These analyses can supplement traditional marketing campaigns when a new single or album is released by an artist. The impact of television appearances, concerts, and other events across social media can be accurately measured for a more targeted market. Determining which artist can convert an online view into an online purchase is crucial for every segment of the music industry. This becomes even more important when budgets are tight, and social media marketing offers a way to increase sales at a lower cost, as compared to traditional marketing avenues.

Apart from social media data, music analytics can also be used to combat piracy and illegal downloads of copyrighted music by fans. MusicMetric , a firm which tracks the entertainment industry’s online activity, offers a service which includes a tool to track torrent activity by artist, by song, and by geographical location. This information can be used by industry associations, like the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) to minimize the damage incurred from piracy.

Social media analytics as a service offering has not yet reached maturity, though increasingly many service providers are trying their hand at it. Nabler is one such company, though it tracks brands, and not artists. However, by tweaking their existing system for tracking accounts on social media, they can cater to the needs of the music industry by limiting the universe to musicians, and related artists. Thus, they can expand their social media analytics service offerings to target a whole new clientele: the music industry.

Blog,Media & Publishing
ValueNotes Research
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