Impact of Digital Distribution and Streaming on the Music Industry.
Digital music streaming is when music is distributed and shared to consumers in digital format on various online platforms. With the advancement in internet network bandwidth; online music streaming was introduced to the market.
Impact to the Music Industry
The introduction of digital distribution and streaming of music caused a disruptive innovation to the music industry, as it was an innovation that created a new market and value network. Disruptive innovations start at the bottom of the market and then relentlessly move up the market that eventually displaces established competitors. Established competitors in this case have various additional services along with the Digital Distribution like CD Duplication, CD Distribution, Publishing Administration, Audio Mastering, Monetization of Videos, Charts Registrations, Music Promotion, Free Trend Reports, Free UPCs, Free ISRs, and Facebook Audio Recognition.
Digital distribution and streaming had a huge impact on the industry. It reduced the powers of music labels on artists, especially if the artists were not fully convinced with the proposed changes to their albums. Instead of striking a deal with the music label for marketing and distribution rights, they could go to a digital distribution company and share it with the world at a set price and the distribution company getting a share of the pie. It created a platform for struggling artists that did not have the connection to sign with record labels to share their music online and publicize on social media with the help of influential people with huge followers on Facebook and Twitter.
This innovation has made more music available to consumers than ever before. It has also influenced music listening and discovery habits. In the past you had to listen to full albums but presently people now listen more to singles and compile a playlist of their favorite songs.
Popular Digital Music Distribution Companies:
Proper Music Distribution
Music Services Asia
The Orchard Enterprises
Timeless Music Company
SUGO Music Group
The state51 Conspiracy
Deciding on which digital music distribution company to subscribe to; depends on individual needs, as each of the above companies have unique features that may be very important to some artists but not at all to others. For example, there are some distribution companies that only work with record labels, and some that all you need to do is to sign up and you can start uploading music.
Things needed to be considered when choosing a digital distributing company:
Flexibility: Digital distribution services are not record labels; hence they should not have exclusive rights to your songs, so you have the freedom to get out of any deal at any time without additional costs.
Credibility: How long have they been in business and do you think they would be in business for a long time. Can they be trusted to pay artists at agreed times? Will your releases appear online at agreed dates?
Outlets: Make your music available in a single or various stores. Do they distribute to just few numbers of stores or worldwide?
Subscription Fee: This is a very important factor to consider before selecting a digital distributor. You need to consider if the payment is one-time fee or there is annual fee and probably if your sales will meet up to cover the fee because you need to maximize profit as well. Some digital distributors allow one-time fee while 10 percent to 30 percent cut will be taken from your sales while others will charge you annually without taking such cut. Few ones are moderate in terms of commission and one-time fee.
Digital distribution is a creation that has reduced a number of inconveniences associated with buying CD albums. It created opportunities for artists that might have never gotten deals with record labels. Despite the high rate of piracy associated with online distribution, the pros far outweigh the cons.
Popular Digital Music Stores & Media:
24 – 7
Great Indie Music
Big Pond Music
Space Shower TV
Sirius Satellite Radio Canada
Google Music Store
SoundCloud and Bandcamp can be said to be different in the sense that artists are fully in control of their works and profits. Few digital distributors make their services free while they take commissions from sales.
There have also been cases of artists not getting the accurate money due from streaming using the services of some of these digital distributors but digital distribution is still the best means of reaching fans worldwide.
– Broadtube Press