Data Analytics: The New Game Changer for Independent Artists
“You can’t manage what you don’t measure.”
This wise saying can be truly justified by the recent explosion of digital data and the way it has completely transformed the world we are living in. An individual’s digital footprint - also sometimes referred to as digital shadow - is a gold mine for businesses and sectors that carefully analyse and leverage this information to make informed decisions. And, even though it seems hard to fathom, even artistic businesses like music, which are the flag bearers of creativity and human expression, are no exception to this rule.
Gone are the days when record labels and artist managers would use experience and intuition to guide their efforts to promote and monetise their artists - now, it’s all about Big Data.
But don’t fret just yet. Learning how to manage, interpret and analyse this data can be a dependable ally, and access to consolidated, real-time and user-friendly analytics has now made it easier than ever to harness this powerful tool. A data-driven approach allows artists to track their performance, identify overall trends, measure engagement and reach the right audience after Music distribution- all components which are necessary for a musician to realise their creative and professional goals.
The MADverse Data Analytics dashboard offers some of the most interactive and intuitive cross-platform data insights, which allows artists to track, assess and maximise their performance. Key data signifiers such as overall Streams/Views, Audience Demographics, Location of listeners,Playlist Insights, Average play time, etc. collected across multiple platforms are built into the dashboard to provide artists with a more panoramic understanding of their track and fandom.
So, let’s break it down and understand how these data signifiers can be employed by artists during the course of their musical journey.
Measure your Performance: Overall plays and Average Play time
Overall Plays/Streams/Views, Playlist Insights, and Average Play Duration provide an important insight into how the song is performing upon release. The MADverse Analytics dashboard collects this data from across platforms such as Spotify, Apple Music, YouTube, etc., to evaluate the success of your track and, by extension, the efficiency of your marketing efforts, music promotion and campaigns.
This dynamic approach not only allows you to compare your tracks but also understand at what specific times of the year it is peaking and which platforms it is performing best at.
Case in point: Let’s assume a Rap artist named Axl, who is based in New Delhi, releases a track on Christmas and over the next few months, he observes his songs are outperforming his previous catalogue and also have significantly higher average play duration. He also notices how his streams are peaking in the month of May while the track is outperforming on Spotify when compared to other platforms.
After a quick look at the MADverse Analytics dashboard, he makes the swift decision to schedule the release of his newest album close to the summer and use his resources to run ads on Spotify, as it’s what most of his listeners use. He also notices how well his latest single is performing and decides to inject more money to create and upload music videos and alternate versions of that track. Upon the success of his latest release, he also notices how his song has been placed in 3 different editorial playlists through the Playlist Insights feature on the MADverse Analytics Dashboard. Be smart like Axl!
Audience Demographics: Understanding Your Audience
Understanding your fan persona is an important growth strategy which provides deep insights into who your listeners are. And, audience demographics such as age, gender, ethnic background, etc are a window towards that deeper understanding. The MADverse Analytics dashboard provides crucial audience data insights such as age and gender, which help artists create more engaging and relevant content to establish a deeper and more impassioned relationship with their fans.
Case in point: Axl notices how most of his listeners are between the age of 16-30. While Axl is very happy that his audience is young, he also realises that he has been creating a lot of long-form content and putting it across various platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram, among others.
After a peak at his audience analytics, he decides to study overall trends and notices how most of the age bracket is using Instagram as their primary social media platform and engaging with videos less than 30 seconds. He quickly decides to re-focus all his marketing efforts towards creating Reels for Instagram and running ads on them. Be perceptive like Axl!
Location of the Audience: Assessing popularity across different regions
Like real estate, it's all about location, location, location! The MADverse Analytics dashboard collects data which reflects which cities, regions and countries the song is most popular and where the listeners are based. This often overlooked but extremely crucial tool can help an artist run target ads, create more relevant and meaningful content for its users and plan live tours.
Case in point: Axl notices that his song is doing extremely well in metropolitan cities like New Delhi, Mumbai, Kolkata and Bangalore. To his surprise, he also notices that nearly 45 percent of his listeners are located in the United Kingdom.
Luckily, he used the MADverse dashboard just in time before planning his India tour and decided to go on a four-city tour while hitting all the aforementioned cities and to no surprise - he received an amazing response. Axl also starts creating content which is relevant to the Indian diaspora in the UK and immediately notices more traction. Be astute like Axl!
Embracing change is important for growth, and as DIY creators, it is more imperative than ever to reap the benefits of the digital revolution. As music curators, it is of utmost importance to utilise precious resources like time, energy and money towards the right direction and measuring your performance carefully is the first step towards that. Data is the new holy grail for creators to improve efficiency and build a loyal fan following of listeners who make their daily pilgrimage to music.
So what are you waiting for? Hop on the data train and gain control of your musical journey today.
Have any questions? Write to me at firstname.lastname@example.org, and I would love to take the conversation forward.