Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Is Artists.MTV, Trying To Reinvent Music Platform, From

Alright, hold the phone, is this gonna actually work? Ok, we don't want to come off as pessimistic, but is MTV really trying to get back into music programming, by creating a new music discovery platform directly related to social media? Will be quite interested to see how all of this unfolds as there are a plethora of companies vying to be the dominating force in social networking when it comes to the music industry. 

One aspect that is quite compelling and worth the research is for upcoming bands to be only a few clicks away from much larger acts, as you can create your own band page within the site. These close encounters could really help to gain exposure for the multitudes of bands looking for their big break or for fans to find them through simply cruising the site. 

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Dive into Artists.MTV and request an invite

Artists.MTV Homepage

"When you hear a new band and you want to know more about them, the first place you go is probably Google. But searching for them yields a glut of disconnected information. You want to hear their music. You want to see if they use social media. Maybe you want to see them on tour or actually buy something to support them. And you never know if you’re going to find that all in one place.

Official band websites are often lacking, and fail to link between different platforms. You need a hub — something that connects things like Twitter, Bandcamp, and Soundcloud in on place. You specifically don’t want to have to conduct multiple Google searches just to find out if this band even uses those services.

This is a problem for both casual and diehard music fans, and that’s where Viacom thinks it has a big solution. That solution is Artists.MTV, a service which Viacom hopes will be artist-driven and which will replace artist pages on beginning today.

Dermot McCormack, EVP of Digital for Viacom Music & Logo Group, believes that this solution specifically addresses what he calls the “post-Myspace world.”

“No one had stepped into that space to provide quality, trusted information around the artists you love, curated in a loving way,” he said. “We saw a need in the space and we thought we had the brand, the assets, and the temperament to do it.”

More than simply revamping the artist page — which in the past would have been controlled, owned, and managed by MTV — the new platform offers artists the opportunity to claim their page, or in the case of independent or emerging bands to create their own. From there, they are offered customization options, including the ability to create a Facebook Timeline-like cover photo.

Band of Horses MTV Homepage
Perhaps most impressive is that Artists.MTV is more than just an opportunity for bands to play in MTV’s sandbox. If you’re an established artist with MTV content to your name, it appears on your artist page. For artists with a long history tied to MTV, there’s even content from the early days, like this 1984 footage of a very young Madonna. Some early video content is being digitized for the first time ever.

Get More:
Madonna, Music News

But if a band has never had any MTV exposure, it can still sign up and populate its page with its own content. This is an important development for MTV. In conversation with McCormack, he consistently talked about MTV’s need to empower and give back to artists. The best way to do that is to make the platform open to anyone, which they’ve done. They’ve populated the database with one million artists, some of which they worked with in advance, like Band of Horses, to get their page populated. Others, from huge artists like Lady Gaga to smaller, independent acts will have the opportunity to “claim” their page starting on Sept. 6.

Down the line, there are various opportunities for artists to make money off their page, which is huge. While anyone will have the opportunity to promote their music via iTunes, Bandcamp, or any other vendor of their choosing, there will also be an ad revenue share for artists once the platform exits its beta period. While details of this have yet to be made available, this means artists will have the opportunity to make money directly via their MTV page — a very important step toward the empowerment that McCormack touted.

In order for that to be a success, both artists and fans will need to adopt the platform as a go-to music option. MTV appears to be ready for them. Whether or not they are willing to accept MTV as the middleman between them is what remains to be seen."