So there’s been a pretty big problem in the music industry that has been largely ignored for a long time. Its a problem for big name musicians and small alike: Musicians don’t know if people like their songs before they put them out. Sure, you can ask friends, family, and co-workers, but the reality is that most people don’t tell the truth. Nobody wants to say they don’t like something someone has created to that person’s face. It just doesn’t feel right. Not only that, but even if you finally find someone who is honest with you, they are only just one person. Conclusion’s shouldn’t be drawn from a single data point. So essentially, musicians only find out about the appeal of their song after they release it. And still, even if they find that people don’t like it enough to download, buy, or stream it, they won’t find out what people don’t like about it. This fundamental problem with the creative industry on its way to being solved because of a new company called Audiokite.
Audiokite has just recently won the 2015 SF Music Tech Startup Innovators Challenge. The idea is simple – Audiokite gathers music fans from around the United States into their network, of which they have over 15,000 now. Musicians pay a small fee, about $35 per hundred listeners to have their music distributed across the Audiokite network. The fans then rate the song on a 1-10 scale on a variety of factors relating to the songs appeal. There is also subjective written feedback from listeners. The data is compiled and sent as a report to the musician.
Audiokite reports are very thorough and users rate the song on a variety of factors. These are a couple examples of the data that artists get.
The company is also able to further analyze the data by segmenting their users. They have demographic information such as age and gender, but they also segment by taste in genre. So if you only want to test your electro pop song on people who listen to electro-pop, you can.
This is an example of the written comment section:
“I really enjoyed the vocal performance, specifically the sound of the singer’s voice, and I liked the melody. However, the lyrics aren’t very meaningful or clever in my opinion. I think the song would be good if you kept it mostly the same but changed some of the lyrics. Also, I’m not a fan of the sound of the synth. I would prefer more guitar soloish stuff instead.”
Here is another:
“This track was alright. The producer needs to watch the levels of the bass and instrument track with the vocals on the lead in the track. What sounds like the snare drum makes it a bit hard to clearly hear his lyrics from time to time. Also, watch the feedback background singers sound blown out.”
As you can see, the feedback is honest and constructive, which is what makes the service a real benefit to artists. This means they can improve their songs and make them more commercially viable before release. This means that their tracks will be much more likely to succeed. Not only this, but through the reports, artists can figure out which tracks are the “singles” and which are the supporting tracks on the album. This simple decision can save loads of marketing dollars for labels and artists alike.
Lastly, Audiokite is using their data for additional artist benefits. Because they know what ratings the submitted songs receive, they can filter the better tracks to the top. They use this information to create opportunities for the artists. Top rated artists are offered the option from a number of partner companies to receive free promotion, distribution, and education. Further, the tracks get access to top industry influencers such as labels, radio stations, publishers, and music supervisors. This is very exciting because it promotes success based on pure merit, rather than any other factor.
This company definitely shows a lot of promise for artists and the music industry in general. It’s also just a ton of fun to use! Theres good reason in won the SF Music Tech Startup Challenge.