Millennials have a tendency to do things differently, and music consumption is no exception to that. They outspend most other groups and are much more connected on social networks to share what they like. Here are five key take-aways from Nielsen’s report on the 18-35 year olds that are changing the way music is marketed.
Last week was historically bad for the music industry. Weekly album sales figures dropped to their lowest point since Nielsen Soundscan began been keeping record in 1991. It was also the first week on record that sales of albums dropped below 4 million units. While multiple factors are blamed for the record lows, streaming is the undeniable catalyst.
The Recording Industry Association of America released its mid-year report recently, describing the trends of the music industry. While digital revenue sales have dropped, vinyl sales have spiked. Here are five key takeaways from the report as summarized by Billboard.
The music industry is changing so fast these days that anyone who claims to know what it will be like in 5 years might seem crazy. However, when an entertainment lawyer for digital music entrepreneurs has some thoughts on the future of the business, it’s worth at least hearing. Here’s the takeaway from Steve Gordon’s recent guest post on Billboard.
Apple is working on a new way to deliver and sell albums. According to TIME and Billboard, U2’s Bono has been collaborating with Apple to work on a new “interactive” album format that will allow fans to “play with lyrics and get behind the songs.” While no details have been released regarding new format, it’s likely Apple’s reaction to declining album sales over recent years to streaming.
The last true iteration of Apple’s iconic and world-changing MP3 player, the iPod, has been retired. Last week, as Apple announced new iPhones and a forthcoming Apple Watch, the iPod Classic quietly disappeared from their online retail store. This marks the end of an era that redefined our music listening habits and launched Apple on its path to become the most valuable company in the world.
One of the growing trends in music publishing is direct-to-fan sales. Artists of all calibers and levels of popularity look for new ways to create revenue in the face of declining album sales. Some artists like Garth Brooks have opted to skirt iTunes and sell their music through their own channels. While it can be a gamble, it can also mean bigger profits.
HBO released a trailer for its new series ‘Sonic Highways’ last week and it looks like one of the coolest ways yet to experience the living history of American music. The 8-episode series premieres next month and will follow the Foo Fighters to historic studios in Los Angeles, New York, Chicago, New Orleans, Austin, Washington D.C., Seattle and Nashville as they record their forthcoming record of the same name.
SoundCloud has announced that it will implement advertisements into its streaming service. Similar to Youtube, the “On SoundCloud” service will allow users the option to allow audio ads to play before their tracks in exchange for a share of the ad revenue. While it will likely prove to be lucrative for some artists, others are decrying the move as a loss for indie artists to commercial interests.
Several key players in the music industry are negotiating a new international standard day for album releases. If adopted, all albums would be released on Friday in every country. The proposal is an effort to reduce piracy caused by albums being released in some countries days before they drop in others.