Streaming radio service Pandora recently announced the launch of a lower-priced interactive streaming platform, the result of its purchase of Rdio last year. Unfortunately, the launch might not have the result many in the music business are hoping for; while it will surely convert a handful of listeners who couldn’t afford the standard $9.99 USD per month price, it won’t move the needle in a meaningful way. That’s because the hardest jump for people to make is not from $5.99 to $9.99 -- it’s from zero to a penny.
As of right now, it looks like the age of the music streaming exclusive might be drawing to a close. While providing albums exclusively to one service might have led to a financial windfall for some artists, the resulting piracy and fan backlash proved to be too much for Universal Music Group, which sent out a decree declaring the end of the practice a few weeks ago. This is great news for listeners who want to stick with one service, but it also creates a new problem for artists -- in an age of declining album sales and advances, they need more sources of revenue. Music streaming services can no longer provide that, and brands can be the ones to step in and fill that role. If done well, branded album exclusives can provide a benefit for the artist, brand, and fans -- but done poorly, they can result in bad press and frustration.
Studies show that music helps with fundamental tasks like learning. It also improves memory and drives engagement. Adding a musical element to your marketing can build brand awareness, customer engagement and personalise the customer experience. Here are a few examples of the way in which music can help with your digital brand strategy.
In today’s mobile arena, it’s crucial for customers to connect with your brand. Through business intelligence tools, brands can gather important data (such as location, gender, and music preferences) every time a user listens to their favourite music. By utilising this data, brands can create buyer personas that will enable them to reach out and figuratively grab consumers on a personal level.
As marketing becomes even more competitive and sophisticated, it’s crucial for brands to find innovative ways to connect to existing customers while engaging new ones. This entails providing a personalised experience that customers can relate to on an emotional level — and music can provide that experience. The universal language of music can be used to reach customers across the globe; when used in a mobile context, music can convert mobile experience to an effective customer engagement strategy for brands.
With advancements seen in mobile technology, customers are now more powerful than ever. Mobile allows consumers to be always connected, and with that comes the ability to find information instantaneously. As a result, they want to be in control of their own experience. This power shift to consumers has disrupted traditional marketing models to find ways to connect with consumers by giving them what they want, when and where they want it. One company that is doing that is True Religion.
This new initiative by True Religion aims to improve brand loyalty by outfitting their retail store employees with the Apple Watch, including integration with iBeacons to give their customers a more personalised and pleasurable shopping experience.
In the past year, we’ve started to see many fashion and accessories brands making their first foray into the world of music streaming. They’re taking the lead from the consumer technology, car and luxury brands that have already used music to deeply engage with their customers on an emotional level, in order to build brand advocacy and customer loyalty in order to increase sales.
In today’s digital and tech-focused world, more and more companies are realizing that marketing is no longer about simply placing ads in print magazines or between television episodes. Instead, businesses have discovered the promotional power of an age-old art form: music. And they have begun to incorporate entertainment as an important piece of their mobile marketing efforts.
Companies have approached using music for marketing in a variety of ways. Some have collaborated with famous artists (such as Verizon, which paired up with superstar Jamie Foxx to create and release exclusive tracks and videos), while others have sponsored live events and festivals (such as T-Mobile, which sponsored Coachella) in order to capture their target audience.
Well let’s take a look …
With the list of music streaming services growing by the minute, it’s hard to see which one is more effective for customer acquisition, retention and brand user experience. Each is unique and offers different variations of music streaming services, costs, music catalog and social elements. Depending on what your company offers and is looking to provide, it’s important to understand what the main differences are and how it will impact your brand experience strategy. According to Digital Music news, “a minority (47%) of 16-34s reported listening to fewer than 3 hours a day, with most self-reporting between 3-6 hours daily.” With this in mind, it’s now time to figure out which of the music streaming services are better suited to your brand.
If you’re not actively thinking about mobile customer engagement for your brand, chances are you probably won’t be reaching the entire target audience that you’d hoped for. In fact, your company strategy may be looking as outdated as one of those 90’s Internet ads …