Big Expectations For MySpace Music
From the sounds of it (no pun intended), MySpace Music should be beneficial for all parties involved – MySpace, record labels, artists, Users, advertisers and music e-Tailers. The service, which is due out any day now (sometime this month), will supposedly offer the entire catalogs of Universal, SonyBMG, and Warner Music (77% of all U.S. album sales come from these three according to Nielsen SoundScan as quoted by Fortune). Users will be able to listen to any of the content free of charge, while ads are displayed on the screen. Lets looks at how this benefits each party.
Obviously this will be huge for MySpace. The traffic alone that MySpace Music is likely to generate should be worth it to them. It will also be a huge weapon in its arsenal for the continuing battle for social network dominance as Facebook continues to gain momentum of its own.
It’s no secret that record labels have been missing out on sales as digital music has grown from its infancy into the norm. MySpace Music may not be the entire solution, but there’s little doubt that it will be a nice chunk of it. The fact that these major labels have partnered with MySpace to do this indicates that they will be getting what they want out of it: ad money. Users will also be directed to Amazon and iTunes, where they will have the opportunity to purchase songs they want to keep.
Artists have long been benefiting from MySpace on exposure alone. There aren’t many better promotional outlets for a band these days than this social network. People use it to discover music, and they get to become "friends" with the bands they like and stay updated with information about what those bands are doing. They’ve never been more in touch with the artists they like. This is great for artists because they don’t have to rely on magazines or radio or MTV (like they still play music) to let their fans know about what is going on with new albums, tours, etc. They can simply post a bulletin, and just like that, everyone that cares to, knows about their affairs. MySpace Music will only build upon the already stellar promotional outlet for bands/artists.
For many of the same reasons, the users will benefit greatly from this. They will discover new music that they like, that they would never hear elsewhere. They can hear music for free – a huge plus. They can connect with artists on a level that was simply impossible in the past. They have an on-demand jukebox at their disposal and the only price they have to pay is to see some on-screen ads (which presumably will do just fine residing in a separate browser tab).
There aren’t many businesses bigger than music. Almost everyone likes music, and with these three major labels, there should be quite a diverse selection of artists and genres, attracting music fans of all types. That will be an exceptionally wide range of demographics that advertisers will be able to market to. This is going to be huge, and there is no way that advertisers won’t cash in.
The Music e-Tailers
So far, only Amazon and iTunes have been mentioned, but they will be getting plenty of traffic from MySpace music. People can hear music to see if they like it there, but chances are they will want to own it if they do and go seek out a download. With MySpace Music driving it right to these guys, they should see some happy times as well. Of course, people will still flock to illegal methods, but I don’t see that being any more or less of a problem than it already is.
Bruce at Hypebot is expecting a Monday launch for the service, and I believe that if anyone knows, he would, as much time as he dedicates to covering Internet music projects. I’ll say it again: this is going to be huge. What’s your next move, Facebook?