Wednesday, February 22, 2012

More on Spotify, YouTube, etc

Some quick bulletpoints:
  • Spotify needs to figure out how to convert "listeners" to ticket buyers. One-click. That means all players have to be welcome: TicketMaster, Brown Paper, Eventbrite, etc. Is that even possible?
  • I've watched Spotify in the wild now, and I'm even less convinced of its actual utility to artists. I've so far seen two (anecdotal, yes) instances where the listener has the volume turned down so low as to be un-hearable, but the system still auto-posts the playlist to their Facebook wall. Bad data here.
  • Conversely, YouTube engagement is practically 100%. Sure, sometimes, people will have a song open in one tab and surf in another, but when they watch a YT vid, it's the only thing they're doing. THIS is where you convert people to ticket buyers.
  • Forget iTunes - the days of paying for mp3's is over. Yes, Apple may be writing big checks to certain licensors, but that's only possible with a legacy catalog and scaling to sell everything. 
  • I know there are still people with legacy devices, but don't worry about that: the price of connected devices is falling to practically zero. The cloud is free (except access), but you have to pay to get in the show and for a t-shirt.
  • Network congestion is going to make media-on-smartphones difficult to deliver, but ala-carte apps are the future. The day HBO severs themselves from the cable co's and goes directly to subscribers is coming. Netflix may remain a legacy clearinghouse, but the bulk of content owners will want their own subscribers. Look for Netflix to spin off a turn-key mgmt company that does exactly that.
  • He (or she!) that builds an all-ages venue that's clean and doesn't retail alcohol as its primary income source will be at a massive advantage. What are all those old Border's anchors doing empty? There's plenty of room for a chain of clean venues in the country. Why isn't someone building this?
  • Right now, the best venues are either in casinos or churches. What does that say about this country??
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