One word can be used to sum up Internet radio in 2015. Growth. Higher numbers for listenership and advertising drove competition between labels and publishers. And, if you look at the top XAPP blog posts of 2015, you’ll notice it all comes down to money.
A report issued by the National Bureau of Economic Research last month concludes that, “interactive streaming appears to be revenue-neutral for the recorded music industry.” The summary conclusions by the report authors, Luis Aguiar and Joel Waldfogel, don’t fit the industry trends prior to the study period or the math behind the data.
Consumers are now conditioned to watch television and listen to audio on their own schedule. This has introduced the term known as "time shifting" and changed the way the industry thinks about ratings and audience.
Every few months a naïve journalist gets misled by a false narrative pushed by someone in the recording industry. Last winter it was the New York Times. More recently, Business Insider fell into a similar trap with its headline: “The music industry has made more money in 2015 from a century old technology than ad-supported streaming.”
Taylor Swift made big news last year with a top selling album and her high profile separation from Spotify. She made news again in 2015 with an open letter prior to the launch of Apple Music. The events were considered a public relations coup at the time even though it was a bad business deal for the company. The question today is whether Apple Music can turn around another public relations issue.
If you attended Advertising Week this year you couldn’t avoid sessions devoted to millennials, mobile and … audio. Yes, it’s true. Audio is back and hip enough to get attention at the advertising industry’s largest gathering.