Much has been said about the amazing power of the “new” internet platforms that allow the world of artists, bands, songwriters and music producers to get directly in touch with the world of fans, potential fans, music lovers and any other interested in the consumption of music. With these new tools, the traditional business model of the music industry has been challenged to death. Even when many of the old players have managed to stay in the game by adapting to the new ever-changing scenario, some of them grabbing themselves from the tip of their nails, it’s true that the need for many of the past-model intermediaries, like the distributers, publishers or even the record labels have decreased substantially in the past years. The new policies that some of these are taking, like the so-called “360 deals”, reflect the fear that these intermediaries have entering this new era. And they have many reasons to be afraid, because the revolution seems to be unstoppable.
With all these changes, some of the newly empowered musicians are taking their careers to the next level by using the different Internet tools in smart and strategic ways. However, the great majority of the Internet users (musicians and non-musicians) that are trying to benefit from it to promote their projects, are using the different available tools in a very disorganized and sporadic way, finding it difficult to generate a substantial impact in an immense digital universe that is full of disorganized and distracting content. It’s perhaps because of the fact that dealing with the Internet in a successful way requires a good amount of dedication and craft that the previously mentioned intermediaries are still an important support when an artist is seeking a long and sustainable career. But if we look at the recent cases of success by independent or semi-independent artists or bands, we will notice how their use of the Internet was not only helpful to their career development but absolutely crucial.
We can certainly say that the Internet is the new crucial music Intermediary, but it’s not an easy-to-get-along-with one. Its enormous conglomerate of content makes it very tricky to be noticed and followed in a large scale. However, it’s definitely possible; we just have to take the time to patiently learn how to establish a healthy and productive relationship with the platforms we decide to use, and develop the right skills that allow us to be friends and benefit from this new intermediary that is every time more difficult to ignore.