By Dwight Brown
Trick or Treat!
Our store partners are handing out a lot of treats and good news to TuneCore Artists this October. Apple Music, Spinlet, Spotify and MixRadio are growing, reaching more music fans, helping artists get discovered and finding spooktaclular new ways to stand out in a very competitive marketplace.
15 million users!
Speaking at The Wall Street Journal‘s global technology conference in October, iTunes CEO Tim Cook had a smile bigger than the Grand Canyon. No wonder, Billboard.com reports that Cook announced that the Apple Music streaming service, in just four months, has 8.5 million users taking advantage of Apple’s 3-Month FREE Trial offer, and 6.5 million paying subscribers. The latter statistic represents roughly a 60% conversion rate. Cook cites Apple Music’s human curations as a prime attraction, “We have music experts, just like the DJ when we were growing up.” He continues, “I’m finding personally that I’m discovering a whole lot of music that I wasn’t listening to before.” He isn’t alone.
MusicBusinessWorld.com published an article about an astonishingly honest and controversial interview Apple Music boss and Interscope founder Jimmy Iovine had at the Vanity Fair New Establishment Summit in San Francisco. Iovine shares his unedited opinions on the rise of the self-releasing artist, “freemium” music models, touring VS recording, Taylor Swift-gate, and the challenges he faces at Apple Music. You gotta read it to believe it.
Music discovery and content curation blossom at Spinlet.
Nkiru Balonwu, the Chief Executive at Africa’s leading music download and streaming service, tells MusicAlly.com that Spinlet is facing new challenges head on. “New players like Apple Music [are] changing consumer music tastes in favor of music streaming and a growing emphasis on playlists and music curation to improve user listening experience” To adapt to the new trends, Spinlet is investing in editorial, hiring a team to focus on discovery and content curation, while also partnering with external DJs to promote playlists from its catalogue.
In addition, Spinlet is launching a gospel-music streaming service and a website accessible to people outside Africa. Balonwu, “There are an estimated 10 million Diaspora Africans living in Europe alone… a massive opportunity.” Innovation is paying off:
- Spinlet app downloaded nearly 2 million times.
- 1150 new user registrations on average everyday.
- Over 20 million track downloads to date.
Discovery in action!
Spotify’s Discover Weekly, a music fans’ ultimate playlist, launched in July. In just 10 weeks, 1 billion tracks have been streamed from its playlists, which are delivered as a weekly mixtape of fresh music each Monday. Spotify.com states that 71% of Discover Weekly listeners save at least one song to their own playlists and 60% of users who try Discover Weekly go on to stream five or more tracks. That’s great news for TuneCore Artists as the playlists both include deep cuts and new discoveries.
TuneCore alumnus Ed Sheeran’s single “Thinking Out Loud” has become the first song to hit 500 million streams on Spotify. Spotify.com confirms that his songs have been streamed approximately 2.9 billion times overall and are included on 38 million playlists. Sheeran, who plays arenas with just his guitar and in the past released albums with TuneCore, makes streaming work to his advantage. His success leaves a path for TuneCore artists to follow.
MixRadio teams up with Samsung in India.
The MixRadio music radio/streaming app will be on every Samsung phone. According to Forbes.com, the new agreement exclusively pre-loads their app on Samsung devices, and it will appear in the Google Play store and Samsung store. John Dworkin, MixRadio’s Chief Marketing Officer notes that MixRadio is sensitive to India’s music fan’s specific needs. “In the United States, listeners prefer music organized by album, artist and music genre. In India, they prefer them sorted by region and language.”
Dworkin touts MixRadio’s customer experience too, “When you come into our product [there’s] an experience that engages you rapidly in music and doesn’t require you to do a lot of work. So it’s very very personal, and it’s very very simple.” MixRadio is also available in 30 other countries, which means TuneCore Artists’ music is getting heard in India and internationally too.