Archive for the ‘ Services ’ Category

Services: Tadcast (Paid Placement in Online Videos)

This looks like an interesting service, and something that I will look into as a possible service to build my fan base. Advertising has become more affordable so that even an independent artist like myself can afford it. But before I actually put money into an advertising service I need to work on my promotional campaign, create more video content and finish my mixtape. Before I resort to paid advertising I will explore my free options such as word of mouth, and submitting my music for review at magazines and blogs.

The Full Article is on Hypebot


Tadcast: Would You Pay To Get Your Music In An Online Video?

image from t3.gstatic.comPaying to find fans has been around as long as there has been music and advertising. Once that meant a billboard on Hollywood Blvd, but with the net has come options that put advertising within reach of developing artists as well. Targeted Jango and and Facebook ad campaigns, for example, have proven worthwhile for some. But should artists pay to place music inside videos from the viral internet’s video stars rather than be paid for music use, as in the traditional model? Tadcast thinks so and has created a marketplace to facilitate it.

Details & Video Demo:

Artists upload music to Tadcast, which has provided a similar service to traditional advertisers for some time. and offer it for inclusion in online video productions. Producers include a link to anywhere the artist wants, like a music store or their website. Artists pay for this exposure on a per view and pay for click model much like Facebook or Google ads. Of course, unlike a banner or text ad, placement in a video means that potential ads actually get to hear your music.

How Tadcast Helps Musicians! from Tadcast on Vimeo.

Question: Could Tadcast be a worthwhile investment for some artists that leads to more fans and more income? Or does Tadcast eliminate yet another source of income for artists?

By Bruce Houghton



Services: Indaba Online Music Collaboration (pt. 2)

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Hypebot recently sat down with Indaba Music for an interview. This collaboration service now has over 500,000 users ranging from the inexperienced beginner to grammy award-winning established artists. I have checked out the service and it looks pretty useful, but I have yet to try. Maybe that is because I prefer to collaborate in person, or at least meet someone before I work with them. But the idea of being able to collaborate with a like-minded artist on another continent is appealing to me. And I feel that hip hop artists stand to benefit the most from a collaboration service like this since so much of hip hop depends upon rappers collaborating with the right producers.

Full Article: Hypebot’s interview with Indaba Music (pt. 2). This part of the interview gets more into the specific services offered by Indaba.


Key Takeaways:

How do you provide opportunities for musicians that reward their intrinsic motivations, allowing them to behave in new ways? Are prospects advertised to musicians that would’ve been impossible previously?

Nate Lew: There is no shortage of companies in the digital music space, however, the large majority of these services, from sharing, to selling, licensing and marketing music, solve problems for musicians post-creation, and thus only serve their extrinsic motivations. So, while the commerce side of the value chain is crowded with quality tools to service music, Indaba Music addresses the other side, art, and provides a suite of tools to service musicians – tools that enable anyone with an internet connection to connect with fellow musicians, to make music and to become a better musician.

With 550,000 musicians across all skill sets and interests using Indaba Music, our core offering is fundamentally designed to reward the intrinsic motivations of musicians by providing an immersive social environment, professional creative tools and robust educational resources. The majority of the services we offer musicians would have been a pipe dream even 10 years, ago, but in 2010 they are a reality, and they’re enabling musicians to connect, create and learn in entirely new ways. Here are a few examples of what Indaba music offers as well as the intrinsic motivations (IM) that they reward:

Social Environment

– Networking tools, including personal profiles, people search and groups to meet like-minded musicians and find potential collaborators.

– Communication tools, including real-time chat and in-song commenting to communicate during collaborations and leave feedback in a song’s WAV form

IM Reward: 24/7 access to musicians around the world with whom to socialize, solicit feedback, exchange ideas. This environment is equally valuable to developing musicians who are looking for knowledge and professionals, many of whom are fragile by nature and the Indaba community provides them with a support system and sanctuary.

Creative Tools

– Online collaboration platform that enables musicians in different locations to create studio-quality music together, as well as exchange files, ideas and even rights.

– A free, web-based Digital Audio Workstation that enables anyone with an internet connection to record, edit and mix studio-quality music.

IM Reward: Anyone with an internet connection is now empowered to make music, as location and budget are no longer barriers. Musicians, once without access to qualified collaborators in their area, now have access to a global talent pool and an online platform to collaborate from the comfort of their own home. For musicians around the world who cannot afford a commercial DAW, Indaba Music provides a professional-grade alternative.

Education Resources

– 100,000+ titles of digital sheet music and tablature from all the major publishers

– 1,500+ digital video lessons

– Articles and tutorials from leading publications, including Electronic Musician Magazine

IM Reward: Musicians of all stages can learn and improve upon their craft. In just a few clicks, musicians can then apply what they learned in online collaborations or chat with like-minded musicians for further discussion.

How are these opportunities redefining the role and power of amateur musicians? Has it changed what it means to be a professional musician?

Nate Lew: Despite the fact that under the umbrella of the “music industry” there are (largely) independently operating industries for education, production, recorded sales and talent discovery, for musicians, this value chain is much more fluid. Many musicians, for example, use Indaba to make music and become better musicians, partially because they love music, but also because they have extrinsic motivations to monetize their music and establish themselves as artists with the public. As such, we’ve worked hard to provide our community of musicians with professional opportunities to further their careers and introduce their music to a world beyond the walls of Indaba.

Beyond sheer talent, getting work as a musician historically required a combination of physical proximity to opportunities (i.e. being in a major city), as well as a healthy number of industry connections. 10 years ago, the prospect of a bedroom musician in rural Canada dueting with Yo-Yo Ma and having that recording released by a major label, or a church organist in Detroit having his composition included as the theme song for a television show would have been unheard of, but, these types of opportunities for musicians are now possible through Indaba Music. In the past year alone, all 4 major record labels, as well as brands, film studios and video games have elected to bypass traditional “go to” musicians to source music for their projects, and, instead, tapped Indaba’s community of musicians.


Services: Indaba Online Music Collaboration (pt. 1)

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Hypebot recently sat down with Indaba Music for an interview. This collaboration service now has over 500,000 users ranging from the inexperienced beginner to grammy award-winning established artists. I have checked out the service and it looks pretty useful, but I have yet to try. Maybe that is because I prefer to collaborate in person, or at least meet someone before I work with them. But the idea of being able to collaborate with a like-minded artist on another continent is appealing to me. And I feel that hip hop artists stand to benefit the most from a collaboration service like this since so much of hip hop depends upon rappers collaborating with the right producers.

Full Interview: Hypebot’s interview with Indaba Music (pt. 1)


Key Takeaways:

3 Major Innovations That Made Large-Scale Music Collaboration Possible Online

According tech-evangelist Clay Shirky, there’s now a cognitive surplus, an excess of free time and talents of the developed world. When considered as a whole, this amounts to well over a trillion hours a year. Part of the reason that it hadn’t been experienced as a surplus up until now mainly because there was no possible way to pool it together in aggregate and there was no way to introduce people with disparate, yet complementary skills or interests. With the rise of the Internet, what we got was a network that was natively good at supporting social communication and participation. Thus, not only do we have copious amounts of musicians and singers, but we also have a surplus of free time, combined with a public media that enables them to pursue activities that they like and care about.

What are the steps that you’ve taken to recognize the potential of this massive cultural resource and how have you tried to understand what we can make of it? What opportunities do you foresee in harnessing it?

Dan Zaccagnino: As the Indaba Music website has evolved we have taken many steps to understand not just what musicians want to do online, but howthey want to do it. We’ve re-conceptualized the process of online collaboration several times to reflect what naturally evolved as people began seriously collaborating online more and more. In 2007 we imagined what a typical collaboration would look like and designed the Session (the central tool for exchanging ideas, tracks, and discussion) to reflect that “typical” process.

Now, in 2010, with the launch of our new platform, we addressed a number of services across the value chain that musicians have been asking for – from creative tools, like a library of over 10,000 royalty-free clips to more career-oriented ones, like iTunes distribution and royalty allocation.

Really, with a platform that spans each area of an artists evolution – education, networking, production/collaboration, distribution, promotion – the possibilities for harnessing the creative power of a community such as Indaba’s, is remarkable. By continuing to offer additional tools that make musicians’ lives easier, we can continue to foster the incredible artistic output of our community by enabling musicians to focus on making music instead of trying to remember all the passwords to the different fragmented services they use.

What developments had to occur in order for massive collaborative projects to be facilitated on a global scale and what tools for social production are needed to be created to enable these efforts?

Chris Danzig: In my mind there were three major innovations that set the foundation for large-scale online collaboration (or collaboration on any scale for that matter).

  1. The falling price of digital audio production equipment. The commoditization of digital circuitry during the eighties and nineties brought the price point for professional quality production equipment within reach of the average consumer. For the first time, independent artists and amateur musicians had the production resources necessary to produce music in the same fidelity as the major studios.
  2. The falling price of bandwidth. Throughout the nineties advances in delivery and compression mechanisms in the telecommunications sector made bandwidth increasingly inexpensive. The result is a world where media is more easily, and in turn more readily shared. The drawback of this accessibility is of course piracy- the advantage is the early simmering of collaboration through bulletin boards and FTP.
  3. The birth of the social web. The birth of the social network acclimated the public to bringing previously off-line social behavior online. For examples see dating, professional networking and gaming (among many others). Music is no exception to this rule. As an alternative (and in some cases a replacement) for the offline music experience more and more musicians are turning to the internet to fulfill their music needs which is (of course) largely of not entirely a social experience.

Dan Zaccagnino – Co-founder, Co-CEO
Chris Danzig – Co-founder, EVP Product
Matt Siegel – Co-founder, Co-CEO and More Out of the Box Promotional Ideas

Earlier today I posted something from I site I hadn’t heard of before called I would suggest that any aspiring hip hop artist check out this site. It is especially interesting to me because Trackhustle looks a lot like where I want to be with Chi Guy Entertainment in the near future in terms the services offered and the assistance they give artists.

This post takes a look at some truly awesome album cover designs. Although I am not the biggest proponent of selling physical albums, many people do still buy physical music (physical is still dominating digital in terms of revenues generated). One very impressive thing can be said: Tomorrow I will take time out of my day to go to a store and buy a physical copy of Beck’s new 4 track release.  Pictures of Beck’s-8Bit album design.



Beck’s-8Bit album design

Vonnegut Dollhouse’s Dollhouse CD Packaging

Moldover CD Packaging

Musical Mission Statements

I have said before that managing your social media campaigns can be like a full time job and can eat into precious time that would otherwise be devoted to writing performing or connecting with real people. This article on The DIY Musician Blog entitled “Musical Mission Statements, Sanity & You” says KEEP IT SIMPLE STUPID.

I haven’t formally worked on a mission statement before. What I have done is start a campaign called The Classical Movement, which gives praise to and shines light on the period of hip hop that I find most inspiring and what I fell in love with in the beginning. This is a time period between about 1992 – 1997 during which many of my favorite rappers debuted with their smartest, and powerful material. With The Classical Movement I aim to get back to that wittiness and achieve that raw sound that I loved from that period in time. With my material outside of the realm of The Classical Movement I aim to push the boundaries of hip hop by experimenting with different sounds and genres. I also love the idea of the concept album in hip hop. Having a story line really gives the listener a more complete vision of the artist’s vision and allows the artist to express a bigger and more complete thought. So that’s a long version of my mission statement. Working on shortening that, ha.


Here is the article from The DIY Musician Blog from CD Baby:

Practicing. Writing. Recording. Booking. Web design. Social media. Videos. Marketing. PR.  Driving yourself mad wondering where to shift your focus? Go back to the basics.

Remember your mission statement!

Don’t have a mission statement? Make one. What would it look like? Here are some examples:

1) We are in it to win it. Fame and riches are our first concern.

2) All music that has come before is dead. We must strive to blaze our own path. Uniqueness!

3) Music is only a part of our balanced lives. We make music in order to have fun and improve our sense of well-being.

4) Music is our way of creating positive change on the planet. Social-consciousness!

5) Mystery is key. We must obscure, evade, and sidestep. Through a sense of enigma, we will forge our true connection with an audience.

Why should you state what your mission is upfront?

1) It will ensure that everyone involved in your band, group, or organization is on the same page. Your goals will be aligned, and that united sense of purpose will inspire your collective work ethic and creativity. If you make music on your own and direct your own career, you should still state your mission to keep yourself in check and better understand your goals. The better you understand yourself, the easier it will be to know how to connect with an audience.

2) For sanity’s sake. DIY artists already have enough on their plates. You can’t do it all. You’re going to have to let some opportunities pass you by. You’re going to have to let some responsibilities slip through the cracks. But which ones? Worrying about this can drive you mad. But by remembering your mission statement you can hold each decision up to that light.

-Chris R. at CD Baby

Facebook Introduces New “Modern Messaging System” (pt. 2)

Hypebot posted an update to the story on facebook’s new modern email system earlier today.

I think this new service could elevate the importance of a single message. If Facebook does a good job of making sure users are getting only messages they really care about, then there will be a heightened expectation level when checking your inbox.

As a 22 year old I hardly check my mail box because there’s RARELY anything of importance to me in it. I check my voicemail a little more because maybe just maybe there might be a diamond in the rough. I check my email eagerly multiple times a day because there’s often important messages. And I get most excited about Facebook notifications because 95% of the time it is something interesting about me or someone I care about. If a marketing message was slipped in there every now and then I would be a little pissed but if it happened less than in my email I would still enjoy my fb notifications more.

Here is the follow up story on Hypebot:

image from t3.gstatic.comThe new service, which will debut Monday with an iPhone app and roll out over the next few months, mimics the behavior of teens who are already abandoning conventional email to converse across multiple platforms in short bursts. But Facebook Messaging could also make social music marketing more difficult. Here’s why:

Messages May Be Filtered Out – While a email address is offered, it’s not required. Whatever the source of email, Facebook promises to use “Friends”, “Likes” and other clues to filter email. So a fan who signed up for a band’s email updates, could find their emails automatically shuttled into an “other” folder if they have not also friended the artist on Facebook.

Facebook says that their system will get smarter over time, so that people that aren’t friends on Facebook but communicate often will show up in the stream. How repeated one way communications like email newsletters will be filtered or allowed to pass into the users main stream is unclear

Too Much Of The Same – A major selling point of the Facebook’s system is that it unifies email, SMS, IM and Facebook messaging into a single stream somewhat like Google’s failed Wave. But that means that artist and marketers who automatically post the same updates to multiple channels risk overloading users of Facebook Messaging.

Is There A Solution? – It’s important not to judge a system that no one has used, and its likely that some of Facebook’s new features will actually enhance the artist/fan relationship. But a first look at Facebook Messages should encourage artists and music marketers to step up their friending efforts now to avoid flitering later and to closely monitor future developments.

Direct to Fan Marketing Services

As I build my email list I am looking at a few services which help with organization and results. I need something that can easily showcase the new music, photos, videos and what I’m up to. I also need easy interconnectivity to my Facebook Artist Page (ideally a “like” button embedded in the email, and the ability to suggest music to fb friends). I’ve been looking at ReverbNation’s FanReach, Nimbit, Topspin, and FanBridge.


FanReach – Since I am already using ReverbNation as a base of operations for getting messages out to my social media sites and I already have 40 contacts in my FanReach mailing list it would be very convenient to be able to use FanReach as my email system. ReverbNation offers a free service as well as a paid service called FanReach Pro. The free service allows you to create widgets to sign up people for your mailing list, set up an auto response when people sign up, group your contacts into different lists, and view analytics of who receives, opens and clicks through to you desired pages. The pro service allows for more customization with templates and colors, one-click addition of ReverbNation content like music, videos, and photos, and links to social media, and a service called Fan 360 that collects info about your fans based on their emails.

Nimbit – Nimbit is actually a complete support system for independent artists. One of Nimbit’s features captures info about fans whenever they make a purchase. You can add email list signup to your social media or website, and also create email lists based on geographic location, purchasing patterns, etc.

Topspin – Topspin offers professional marketing services to artists that are somewhat established. Not everyone can sign up for Topspin. You need to either work with one of their label/management partners or meet 2 out of 4 of these criteria: 1. make $5,000/yr or more on music, 2. Have at least 2,500 email addresses in your database, 3. Website gets 10,000 unique visitors/month, 4. Have at least 15,000 fans on facebook. From the Topspin website, it looks like they offer very professional services, but, apparently, I’m not ready yet.

FanBridge – FanBridge has the looks of a more professional service than Nimbit or FanReach, yet it is available to beginning artists unlike Topspin. Everything is aimed at getting more value out of your fan relationship, and that can be very important for beginning artists. I will experiment with FanBridge and write a more in depth review as I understand the service more.

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