Tag Archives for " YouTube "

IFPI Numbers Show How The Music Industry Is Getting Healthy Again

IFPI music industry healthyThe annual IFPI revue of the music business confirms what all the other studies have shown – that music is truly on the comeback trail. After years of doom and gloom, the industry has seen its first double-digit rise in revenues in nearly 20 years, all thanks to streaming. The skeptics said it would never happen, but the numbers don’t lie, as a billion dollar increase in income shows that the format replacement cycle has finally has finally taken hold.

The IFPI found that there were 112 million paying streaming subscribers, which is a little higher than most other studies have found. The predictions were that once the industry got to 100 million subscribers then the pain from the death of the CD would be lifted, and the prediction proved to be true. The fact of the matter is that this 112 million figure should be just the tip of the iceberg, as there’s still plenty of room for improvement.

One of the things that industry analyst Mark Mulligan cited was the growth of streaming in South America. When the CD was king, most of the consumer’s money went into purchasing a player, then the user bought mostly inexpensive bootlegs CDs, which meant no money returning to the artist, label, songwriter and publisher. Streaming changes the whole equation though, since most people already own a smartphone, so subscribing to a free or paid tier is more affordable. The same is happening in other parts of the world as well. Chalk that up as a win for increased revenue and royalties. It also shows why that 112 million figure is just a drop in the bucket.

Just to put this all in perspective though, streaming numbers will have to increase in a big way, as the CD revenue is about to collapse in the both Germany and Japan. Of course, it’s still a big business in the U.S. at a little less than a billion dollars a year, but expect that number to fall off a cliff soon too, maybe even in 2017.

There are still a lot of inequities when it comes to streaming royalties, beginning with the way they’re currently calculated by the streaming services like Spotify and Apple Music to the minimal payments from YouTube, but strides are being made in both areas that can change the dynamic soon. Word is that 2017 has started off a little flat on the revenue side of things, but barring some unforeseen catastrophe, 2017 will end up being another good year for both streaming and the music industry.

Music Industry News Roundup For The Week Of 4/14/17

Music Industry News Roundup Here’s the Music Industry News Roundup for the week ending on April 14th, 2017. The news this week is varied, but interesting, with Spotify in the lead again. Let’s get into it.

Recording artists are lobbying Capitol Hill to get paid for radio airplay. This has been an ongoing struggle for a couple of decades but the NAB always wins. It might not be so easy this time.

3 Rights societies collaborate for better royalty collection. ASCAP, France’s SACEM and the U.K.’s PRS are hoping that the blockchain technology from IBM will help with better and faster worldwide collections. Blockchain has been offered as a solution by a wide array of tech startups, but having the muscle of an IBM could actually give it a chance.

Google has to change how it presents music in order to prosper. There are two destinations with Google Play and YouTube music, and that’s one too many.

Spotify might take a different route to going public. It might list its shares directly without raising any money, which gives its investors an easier way to cash out.

Jay-Z pulled his music off of Spotify and Apple Music. Then he brought it back to Apple Music. Curious, but too little too late, unfortunately. This won’t help either Jay-Z or Tidal.

Amazon is actually the world’s biggest streaming service. That’s based on the number of Prime members it has, who automatically get access. This doesn’t mean they’re actually using the service though.

Another plagiarism lawsuit catches Ed Sheeran this time. And it cost him $20 million and co-writes.

DailyMotion relaunches to try to take on YouTube. But it’s going to have a lot less user content, so it really isn’t challenging YouTube much.

Spotify is better than broadcast music radio. Well, duh. Especially with long blocks of commercials these days, radio is becoming unlistenable.

A guild for music supervisors has launched. It’s only for the UK and Europe, but can the US be far behind?

That’s the Music News Roundup of what went on in the music industry last week. Have a great week ahead!

The Reason Why YouTube Pays Artists So Little

YouTube user generated contentThe recorded music business is rejoicing at the fact that after more than a decade, it finally has some strong revenue growth. The best part is that the growth looks like it will continue, as paying for streaming has finally gone mass market and listeners have seem the light of the benefit of paying at least a little every month to enjoy their favorite songs. That said, all this growth comes with little help from YouTube, which still pays artists at a lower rate than every other streaming service.

According to the RIAA and just about everyone else who’s done a survey, YouTube pays around $1 per thousand plays, while Spotify may pay as much as $7 for the same number. That’s a huge disparity and it’s something that all record labels have been wrestling with for some time. YouTube hasn’t been terribly cooperative in these discussions, giving a “This is all we have. Take it or leave it,” response in just about any licensing negotiation.

How does it get away with it when other streaming networks can’t? The key here is that YouTube is primarily a user generated service. If a label was to refuse a license to to the company, its songs would still appear thanks to user uploads. The label can ask for a take down, but as soon as that happens, another one, or 10, pop up. This puts YouTube in a strong position to low-ball on any licensing agreement.

Of course every other streaming service plays by different rules. Their lifeblood are the songs that they’re only able to play thanks to the licensing agreements with the labels. No license, no songs to play. Users can’t upload their own content (legal or otherwise), so the user generated nature of the way YouTube works just doesn’t exist elsewhere.

All this means that YouTube probably won’t be paying much more than it already is in the future, much to the dismay of labels and artists alike. The only good thing in all of this is that there’s some evidence that we’re reached “peak YouTube” and more and more people now prefer to get their music on a dedicated service. That probably won’t have much of an impact on your bottom line if you’re an artist though. It’s still way too little, with no sign of getting better.

Mastering Engineer Gavin Lurssen On My Latest Inner Circle Podcast

Gavin LurssenGavin Lurssen started as a protege of the great mastering engineer Doug Sax (the very first indie mastering guy) but quickly forged his own way and sound, first at the famed Mastering Lab, then at his own Lurssen Mastering in Hollywood.

Along the way he’s mastered projects for everyone from Foo Fighters, Queens of the Stone Age, Eric Clapton, Sheryl Crowe, Miranda Lambert and Elvis Costello, among many others, plus he’s won 4 Grammy awards for his work. Gavin is also a governor of the LA chapter of the Recording Academy, and now has his own mastering plugin from IK Multimedia.

We had a great conversation on mastering that I think you’ll really like.

On the intro I talk about YouTube’s new requirement of 10,000 views before you can get paid, and what we know about the upcoming release of the new Mac Pro desktop.

You can listen to it at bobbyoinnercircle.com, or via iTunesStitcher, Mixcloud or Google Play.

Music Industry News Roundup For The Week Of 4/7/17

Music Industry News Roundup Here’s the Music Industry News Roundup for the week ending on April 7th, 2017. It’s been another big week in the world of streaming, but there’s other news as well. Let’s get into it.

Streaming is now making more money than downloads ever did. And Steve Jobs said it would never happen. Some good charts and comparisons here, but it just goes to show how much the music business has changed in 10 years.

The music business is still unsure about it though. That’s basically because it’s still run by execs that may be a little too “old school” for their own good.

But streaming may be overtaken by artificial intelligence. Don’t bet on it being soon however.

There are 4 ways it could happen. And the article is probably right – it’s just the timing that we don’t know about.

The UMG/Spotify deal is a bigger deal than you think. Mark Mulligan outlines why this is really a big deal for both parties other than what’s been publicized. He says it ushers in a new era of licensing agreements.

The windowing part of the deal is bogus. Bob Lefsetz makes a great point that it will only alienate users, and he has a point.

Pandora is losing audience. Fewer visits and less time spent is a bad sign as it loses users to Spotify.

Spotify may be looking to become a label. But despite what this article says it can’t go into competition with the major labels yet.

You can’t trust Facebook’s numbers. It seems to fudge things by 10 to 15%. But advertisers (the lifeblood of the service) are catching on.

And Beats 1 is not the biggest radio station in the world. Apple fudges the facts as well.

YouTube is changing its advertising and everyone is making less money. Advertisers aren’t happy and content creators big and small are besides themselves. Mark my words, we have now passed “Peak YouTube.”

That’s the Music News Roundup of what went on in the music industry last week. Have a great week ahead!

Happy Days – US Music Growth The Most In 20 Years

Music sales growthIn record label executive offices across the U.S. there’s rejoicing as the latest RIAA numbers show a double digit increase in revenue for the first time in almost 20 years. The latest figures show that the recorded music market in 2016 brought in $7.7 billion, up a bit more 11% over the previous year. And guess what? Despite what the many naysayers had predicted, the growth is all because of streaming.

Streaming contributed $3.9 billion to the total revenue in 2016, which was up 69% from the year before. And get this – it now makes up 51% of the recorded music business, which is the first time it’s crossed that mark in the U.S. There’s even more good news though. There were 431.74 billion (with a B) streams counted by Nielsen Music (which includes video and audio on-demand streams), and the average per-stream rate went up to $0.0072. To put that number in perspective, that number last year was $0.00517, and in 2014 it was $0.00666.

One of the downsides of the streaming numbers is that fact that YouTube no longer reports all of its streams to Nielsen Music. Last year it began to report streaming data on artists whose music has over 1,000 views a day. That means that a lot of the streaming data is going unreported, something that’s bound to bring about some gnashing of teeth in label board rooms.

As you would expect, CD sales are now rapidly declining to the point where just 99.4 million full-length CDs were sold in the United States. Although that was worth $1.2 billion, which is nothing to sneeze at, it still marked the first time since 1986 that fewer than 100 million were sold. Top that off with the fact that downloads were down 22% last year to $1.8 billion, and you can see that it’s a good thing that streaming has picked up the slack.

The numbers show that the vinyl fad looks like it has peaked though, as sales revenue grew just 3.5% to around $430 million, based on a 1.8% growth of unit sales to 17.2 million. To put that into perspective, vinyl growth averaged 38 percent a year from 2012 through 2015, according to Nielsen Music numbers.

So overall, the music business is now picking up steam in the right direction. Hopefully the growth trend will continue.

March 30, 2017

6 Tips To Improve Your YouTube Video Search Results

YouTube video search resultsVideos on any platform can be used as an effective marketing tool, but you must observe some essential SEO, or Search Engine Optimization, techniques for that to happen. Before you go live on a video, here are 5 tips that will improve its search results:

1. Name your video something descriptive. “Untitled_bandvideo12.mov” is not descriptive at all, so your video will never get added by the search engines, and your fans won’t find it. “The Unsigned Band At the Cavern Club” is much better.

2. Make sure that your description contains the same phrase as your title. For example, “This video features The Unsigned Band at the Cavern Club on January 9, 2017.” A title like “Here’s our band at the Cavern Club” wouldn’t be as effective, because it omits the keyword “The Unsigned Band.” Make sure that you also use this phrase in the description as well.

3. Make sure that you fill out the description. The more detail contained in the video description, the more search engines will love it. That means you should include a brief summary of what the video is about, who’s in the video (including band members and actors), and the names of the director, producers (video and recording), songwriters and everyone else involved. If someone does a search for any of these people, having them listed in the description will make your video show up in the search results. It’s tough to do sometimes, but make sure the description contains anywhere from 75 to 200 or even more.

4. Always include a link. Make sure to include a link to your website and or social media in the description. Make sure that it includes the full “http://” at the front so the link will be active. And don’t forget the contact info so someone can get in touch with you if they need to.

5. Use the proper tags. Not only should the artist name be included, but also any similar artists, the type of music, and even the mood of the song will help the video to be found during a search.

6. Include the name of the original artist when doing a cover song. Cover songs are a good way to get an artist noticed on YouTube, but the song selection, performance, the title and proper tagging play a big part in its popularity.

Remember, the more text the body of your description has, the more likely it will be found by a search engine and the better your search results will be. A hundred words works well, but so could 500, so don’t feel that you have to limit yourself.

You can read more tips like this from my Social Media Promotion For Musicians book, as well as my other books on the excerpt section of bobbyowsinski.com.

Music Industry News Roundup For The Week Of 3/3/17

Music Industry News Roundup Here’s the Music Industry News Roundup for the week of March 3rd, 2017. A lot went down this week in a few related areas. Let’s get into it.

Good news – recorded music grew by 7% last year. It’s actually up $1.1 billion over last year, which is a heck of a good year of growth.

Indie labels say their share grew by more than 6%. That’s good news for the DIYers out there.

And indie publishers saw their revenue grow by 60%. The business may never reach it’s previous heights, but it’s definitely coming back.

Facebook is about to go after YouTube big time. And that means paying creators for things like music, if the hire outlined in this article means anything. A lot of people in the industry are very excited about this potential new source of revenue.

Artists are banding together to try to influence the US Copyright Office to force YouTube to pay more. Good for them for trying, but I don’t think it will mean much.

There’s over a billion hours of YouTube watched every single day. That means it’s 10 times as popular as Netflix or Facebook video and almost approaches broadcast TV’s numbers.

And YouTube has millions of dollars for artists in an escrow account. If you’re Canadian, you probably haven’t been paid some royalties owed to you, but you only have 3 months to make a claim.

The Austin live music scene is really struggling. Just like in other cities around the world, venues are closing at what seems to be a record rate. The festival scene is still strong, but SXSW now has a problem with not enough venues for it typical showcases.

Radio is not the place to listen to music, according to Jay-Z. OK, he’s biased but what he’s saying is totally true and it’s been something that I’ve been repeating for years on this blog and in my Music 4.1 book – Madison Avenue really runs radio, meaning that it’s all about the advertiser, not the listener.

That said, the number of radio listeners hasn’t changed much. People talk about the technology as being old and obsolete (it is), yet we all continue to use it more than we think.

That’s the Music News Roundup of what went on in the music industry last week. Have a great week ahead!

February 20, 2017

YouTube To Eliminate The 30 Second Ad

No more YouTube 30 second adWell here’s a bit of good news. I know that most of us hate sitting through even the skippable 5 second pre-roll commercials that run before YouTube videos, let alone the 15 second ones that you have to watch all the way through. What’s even worse though, is having to watch a full 30 second ad that you can’t skip and seems to go on forever. It looks like YouTube now agrees with us as it recently stated that it will no longer allow 30 second un-skippable ads as of 2018.

The fact of the matter is that most people grow frustrated after about 10 seconds of an ad and leave for something else, especially if a timer tells them how much time is left. While that might be a factor, most observers feel that this decision isn’t based on users react to being held captive by an ad. They believe that the real reason that YouTube is taking these steps is because it’s fear of Facebook, which has recently revealed that it will soon only allow ads after a video has run for at least 30 seconds. That means no pre-roll ads, which I think will be a big selling point for users watching Facebook videos going forward.

That said, YouTube will still continue to have un-skippable ads, they just won’t be as long as 30 seconds. YouTube’s options for advertisers include ads that can only be skipped after five seconds, as well as un-skippable ads that run for 15 or 20 seconds. It also offers un-skippable bumper-style ads of up to six seconds.

Believe it or not, Google has said that those long video ads deliver results for advertisers even when users are able to skip the ads. Viewers who watched skippable ads all the way through, or for the full 30 seconds, were 23 times more likely to visit the advertiser’s channel and subscribe, and 10 times more likely to engage with it.

So even while they’ve been effective, the 30 second ad will soon become extinct on YouTube. 2018 can’t get here fast enough.

Music Industry News Roundup For The Week Of 2/10/17

Music Industry News Roundup Here’s the Music Industry News Roundup for the week of February 10th, 2017. It’s been a busy week in the music world this week. Let’s get into it.

Google and YouTube merge their music teams. There’s confusion between Google Play and YouTube Red services, so look for these to become just a single service soon.

Warner Music joined the $1 billion streaming club. Now all 3 major labels make more than a bill from streaming.

FM radio is now enabled in half the smartphones in the US. The question is, how many are actually listening?

Ticketing is a broken industry that needs to be fixed. The latest incident with Ed Sheeran may bring things to a head in the UK.

Trump’s presidency will affect music in some way. Here are 5 scenarios of what could happen.

Chance the Rapper gives all his music away for free and still does pretty well. So he doesn’t need a label as a result. Here’s how he does it.

Thanks to the Super BowlLady Gaga’s sales surge over 1,000%. In the grand scheme of things, her sales still aren’t that great though.

A million plays isn’t enough to break an artist any more. I keep saying that the metrics have changed. You need at least 10 million to even get in the ballgame, and 50 mil for a minor hit.

The reason why so many music tech startups fail. They don’t analyze the market to see if there’s really one there. But they’re musicians, what else do you expect (musicians know what I’m talking about)?

Sir Paul McCartney is suing Sony/ATV publishing to get his Beatles songs back. And there’s a good reason why he’s done it in the US, according to this article.

The New York Times is bundling a free Spotify account with a subscription. That should push Spotify over 50 million paid users soon.

That’s the Music News Roundup of what went on in the music industry last week. Have a great week ahead!

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