The full article is worth a read, but here are some tasty knowledge nuggets.
Radio is still the dominant way people discover musicI was surprised that YouTube was the primary music streaming source, but I suppose I've been spoiled by Spotify. Upon reflection though, whenever I want to hear music that isn't on Spotify I immediately load up YouTube to give the band a listen.
More teens listen to music through YouTube than through any other source
- 48% discover music most often through the radio
- 10% discover music most often through friends/relatives
- 7% discover music most often through YouTube
Positive recommendations from a friend are most likely to influence purchase decisions
- 64% of teens listen to music through YouTube
- 56% of teens listen to music on the radio
- 53% of teens listen to music through iTunes
- 50% of teens listen to music on CD
- 54% are more likely to make a purchase based off a positive recommendation from a friend
- 25% are more likely to make a purchase based off a music blog/chat rooms
- 12% are more likely to make a purchase based off an endorsement from a brand
- 8% of all respondents share music on social networking sites, while 6% upload music.
The big takeaway from this research is the primary driver for purchasing decisions: recommendations from friends.
We are over four times as likely to purchase something recommended from friends than we are from a brand endorsement.
This isn't surprising, but it's a good reminder to where we should spend our limited time and money on marketing. Word of mouth is cheap and effective, but requires a substantial time investment. With sponsorship and ad campaigns you could spend precisely infinity dollars trying to purchase opinion with meager results. Remember Rhianna spending a cool million on a flop single or some kids who blew through $100,000 without "making it"? The internet has severely crippled the effectiveness of "he he shouts loudest wins" marketing.
Save your money for higher quality recordings, shows, and merch. Focus your marketing efforts on people and, to a lesser extent, blogs.
The game is about quality and personal connection.
Like it's always been.