By: Fredwill Hernandez
The Getty Fire in Los Angeles which started on Mon. – Oct. 28th near the Getty Center, caused evacuations but it did not hamper or deter Public Relations firm rockpaperscissors who was behind the “inaugural” and highly promoted Music Tectonics conference which was scheduled to take place near the Getty Center at the Skirball Cultural Center on Tues. – Oct. 29th, but was quickly relocated [within hours] to the Sheraton Grand [DTLA] allowing for the highly successful conference to take place.
Among topics discussed [throughout the day during 15 plus panels, fireside chats, and discussions] at the well attended conference where how [self-empowered] DIY artists are taking advantage of the Independent Era — which isn’t on the margins anymore — making up 40 percent of [the recorded music] industry.
Other topics discussed was everything from legal changes to the music industry, and changes still needed to be made [according who you talk to], to partnerships with major labels and distributors, the importance of blockchain, B2B discussions that have led [all the way] up to acquisitions, marketing [tips], and also a discussion on the social music video explosion.
“We’re in the age of empowered artists and we’ve had for a couple of years the DIY artists, independent label services are growing at an outstanding rate – “three times quicker” than the rest of the business and we’ve seen the whole eco system of technology and apps, and services and tools arising to serve those artists,” eloquently explained Mark Mulligan, MIDiA Research, during his [welcome] keynote address. “The reason we can see these changes being real impactful, causing major changes is that the traditional music business is not “paying attention.” The traditional music business is either trying to buy the companies, trying to set up their own competitors, or having to completely change their deals structure.”
During the Labels and Managers Share Music Tech Tools for Marketing [panel], Jeremy Gruber, head of digital marketing and strategy, Friends at Work [Management] explained, “One of the challenges of the traditional recording music industry that were in — is that we don’t always own the shopping cart, the check out process, so what we approach is trying to own as much of the “data flow” as we can. Full disclosure, I’m a partner in a marketing technology start-up called Found.ee, and Concord [Music Group] is one of our investors and users…that system allows you to track where people are coming from, where they’re going, what’s meant for retargeting, and pools of potential advertising [to be used] later. When you’re running an advertising campaign there can be conversion pixels put on the shopping cart — you can track the flow of data as far as you can through the system. Obviously when someone gets to Spotify, we know they got to Spotify, we don’t know what they’ve listen to — but when you can send them to your QVC store, or some shopping cart you own, you can get more data out of that, so we do as much as we can in this industry.”
Found.ee has been praised as one of the most useful digital-marketing tools for labels and managers, as they manage their digital advertising campaigns for artists and music through two pillars: one called ‘Audience Everywhere,’ which automates the process of building remarketing audiences based on the data that marketers own, and two being ‘Audio Everywhere,’ which will help people [predominately managers, artists, or labels] run audio-ad campaigns across Spotify, iHeartRadio and other streaming services.
As Gruber beautifully put it, “Marketing now is about the moment.” A theme that resonated throughout the conference is that there are no set rules!
“One of my biggest gripes in the recording music business or in the music business in general is the “data siloing,” I don’t know if you ever worked in the fashion industry or in other industries but I have friends that work there and it baffles me that we as an industry don’t have the ability to cross reference the data where the artist is at the absolute epic center of everything: the artist and the music. They are selling tickets, they are selling merch, and they are selling music, but we aren’t able to cross reference that data to really help to tide lift all the shifts. We’re not getting ticket data [granular ready much stick data] at all from the ticketing companies, it’s very hard to get that from the merch companies. Management who does sit in the middle of all these things can get some of it but not all of it, and that blows my mind as well powerful [artists] managers can’t get the most granular data possible to really help drive the campaign and inform the [record] label, or the booking agent, or inform the merch company, yes that is one of my biggest gripes in the music industry, and if you were to knock down those silos way more money would flow in for the artist/s,” eloquently explained Josh Berman, Concord [Music Group] who was also one of the panelist on the Labels and Managers Share Music Tech Tools for Marketing [panel], and had worked alongside Gruber at Concord prior to Gruber joining Friend at Work [Management].
As to what prompted Dmitri Vietze, Founder and CEO, rockpaperscissors, to have the [inaugural] Music Tectonics conference, “We are heavily involved in doing PR for music technology companies and we were looking around for a place to do a great conference. There is so many interesting seismic shifts happening in the music space because of innovation and technology, and we realized there wasn’t anything going on like it in Los Angeles. There’s a lot of creativity and innovation happening here in the music space, the major labels are here, indie labels are here, lots of social media platforms, Spotify’s move downtown, Warner Music’s move downtown, Tik Tok is opening their headquarters here, so we thought it was the perfect place for us to bring together the communities around technology and music.”