Recently Warner Music Group and social networking site imeem announced a partnership where Warner Music would allow imeem to stream full songs in exchange for a share of the revenue from ads that appear next to the song player.
Think of it as something like Google Adsense for music.
We’ll see a lot more of this as record companies try to respond to file sharing and the need to generate new revenue streams in light of decreasing profits.
Ad supported music is a good idea in theory. However, some things need to be ironed out before it is truly viable, here’s a few.
- How will ads be matched to music so that they reach the intended target market? The reason why Adsense is so successful is that it “senses” key words in the content and matches them to relevant advertising?Tagging of music files is one way to resolve this. Who will manage this?
The record company, the advertiser’s agencies, ad insertion companies…
- What control do advertisers have over deciding what music their products and brands will be associated with? How do these associations integrate with and support their broader marketing strategy and campaigns?
- What happens if an artist has an exclusive licensing deal with a brand and they are “accidently” played alongside a competitor’s ad? Who is responsible for monitoring this?
This La Times article (via Ad Supported Music Central) explains some of the issues with marrying “bands to brands”.
What do you think?