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Since their introduction in the mid-2000s, streaming platforms have unquestionably changed the music industry. It’s no secret that music platforms such as Soundcloud, Spotify or Apple Music have brought huge success to many musicians. Streaming platforms have allowed musicians to gain large audiences and increase their fan base. Moreover, listeners can access their favorite music at any time.
While some of these effects are still being debated, particularly in regards to the money reaching artists and composers, music lovers are eagerly pouring money into DSPs for access to music. And a lot of that money goes to the music industry, maybe not as fairly as some would like. The International Federation of the Phonographic Industry praised streaming services in March for bringing recorded music revenues back to where they were 20 years ago. More than a few sectors of the music industry are content with the status quo.
In a world of rapidly changing user expectations, technology-enabled services must remain adaptable, and streaming platforms – with their large user bases and revenue streams – appear to be set up to encourage rapid innovation. . People want to get new updates and new features because the world is changing so fast, and they love old features. However, one objection that can be made about Western digital streaming platforms is that they all essentially provide the same main service: unlimited music for a monthly fee.
Major streaming platforms show signs of improving their user experience: Spotify has made significant investments in podcasting. Apple Music continues to emphasize radio services. Amazon Music has integrated Twitch live streaming into its app. However, it’s hard to avoid the conclusion that each streaming software offers a fairly similar experience to its users: a dark rectangle containing a large number of playlists. As a result, industry experts were asked what streaming platforms should do differently. Should they focus on improving their user services or expanding their B2B offerings? Or, on the other hand, they may need to make an effort to be more different from each other – and if so, how? Several experts want distinction and change, with many asking for more experiences in the app to improve the fan experience and improve the artist-fan relationship. Below are some thoughts from industry experts.
As Vickie Naumann, director and owner of CrossBorderWorks, says, vast streaming platforms have turned into utilities. Hundreds of millions of music fans have a free or paid subscription, and once people experience the simplicity, they can’t imagine living without it. The big streaming platforms already stand out in terms of features and user experience and offer podcasts as part of the content mix.
The stability and maturity of the digital music economy has created opportunities for the emergence of additional unique services and experiences. Full-featured streaming platforms serve as the new foundation for accessing recorded music, and they shouldn’t have all the bells and whistles. We need a wide range of techniques to light up music for fans because music is tribal and diverse.
Lara Baker, Songtrust’s Business Development Manager, recalls the Music Producers Guild’s “Credit Where Credit Is Due” campaign, which lobbied for contributor credits, which were traditionally included on CD/record covers. , being made available on digital services so listeners could see who else was responsible for their favorite songs. So it would be a great initiative to provide fans with more information about certain songwriters, producers, labels, etc.
Additional song and album information has always been available through services such as Bandcamp and SoundCloud. The recent introductions of Apple’s Behind the Songs portal and Spotify’s songwriter pages, as well as the Notable site are steps in the right direction. Every fan wants to be more informed, so features like these can be enjoyable for them. The perfect streaming platform would be one that: allows artists to personalize their profiles and communicate with their fans through the platform: this would allow live streaming, artist-fan contact, virtual merchandise, etc. ; can host song-making events with live fan-artist interaction. This will encourage more people to become part of the platform to communicate with their favorite artists.
Robyn Kennedy, Head Sync at Bucks Music Group Limited, mentions that in reality, streaming platforms have a lot of room to grow their services and work with rights holders, writers and musicians to offer listeners and creators a better experience. Perhaps a tiered subscription fee would allow them to offer audiophiles and super fans better and exclusive content without increasing the introductory subscription price for those who want access to music.
Seeing organized information that enhances the music listening experience can be very enjoyable for listeners. And there are a lot of people who would be willing to pay more, especially if I knew the musicians would get a bonus. When it comes to connecting music fans and strengthening the bonds between subscribers and the artists and music they love, streaming platforms and labels working together continue to be a source of innovation. . A “lean-in” approach was more typical in the early days when superfans were the primary subscribers. Many platforms have since evolved to offer more discovery and relaxation experiences and features, giving fans a “sliding scale” based on their viewing habits.
As DSPs strive to deliver a better experience, there is a huge opportunity to increase artist and listener engagement and loyalty. Subscription services must continue to evolve. Services have a tremendous opportunity to change, and market pressures will drive them to do so. There are so many technology updates in the world that businesses should keep up with. The surrounding market has changed drastically since Spotify launched ten years ago. So in future fans should expect more updates and great features.