Clay Aiken – The Ever-Evolving Music Industry

The Bandwidth Music and Technology Conference is an annual gathering of music, digital music and media leaders who gather to explore the ever-evolving music industry and how people discover, purchase, and interact with music.  The sixth annual Bandwidth conference took place in San Francisco on August 19th and 20th.

The aim of the conference is to bring together the brightest minds in music and technology.  This year, it was especially interesting because most of the major music labels attended the conference. Interscope, Geffen A&M Records, Universal Music Group, Warner Music Group, Hollywood Records, Sony Music and Warner Bros Records all participated in the conference. In addition, super tech savvy music distribution companies were there. The biggest names in the music tech field like Cisco, Wal-Mart, HP and Twitter also mixed it up with both old and new players in music.

Since the conference took place in my area, I thought I might like to attend the two-day event.  Then, I found out that the fee for the two-day event was almost $700.  Instead, I have been reading reports of the conference on the Internet…………FREE!!

During day one of the discussions, the following data points were shared. These really opened my eyes.

The latest on Twitter…

• # of tweets, daily: 70 million
• # of tweets, monthly: 2 billion
• # of registered users: 145 million
• # of account sign-ups, daily: 300,000
• @amazonmp3 followers: 1,489,543
• Michael Tilson Thomas followers (@mtilsonthomas): 1,754 (famous orchestral conductor.)

(Source: Matt Graves, Communications Director @ Twitter. AmazonMP3 and Thomas followers sourced directly. )

The latest on photos…

• # of photos uploaded onto Facebook, monthly: 2.5 billion
• # of photos uploaded to Facebook, annually: 30 billion
• # of approved photos typically needed by a band, 2000: 6-9
• # of approved photos typically needed by a band, 2010: 300-400

The latest on YouTube:

• #2 search engine in the world (of all engines, separated from Google)
• # of videos rotated by MTV, during its 80s prime: 30-40 per week
• # of views for Tyler Hilton’s cover of  “Use Somebody” by Kings of Leon: 748,099

The latest on apps:

• # of downloaded apps, App Store: > 5 billion (as of June) 
• # of artist apps typically downloaded: < 100,000

(Source on YouTube, photo and apps data: Jeremy Welt, SVP of New Media, Warner Bros. Records.  Total downloaded app statistic from Apple.)

In the new media space, an artist’s presence in Twitter is deemed more important than having a Myspace page.  About three years ago, a Myspace page was required for any self-respecting band or superstar. Today it’s about how many Twitter followers and Facebook friends a band can get. This change from Myspace speaks to the speed of change in both the music and technology world.

The discussion that followed the presentation of all this data was, according to those in attendance, lively and full of heated discussions.  The different ideas and concepts of what the data means were pretty much dictated by old and new “players” in the music business field.

Another topic discussed during the conference was the decision by Universal Music to pull its music videos from MTV.   Instead of putting it’s videos on MTV.com, Universal will show its music videos exclusively online at vevo.com. The change will happen after the Video Music Awards on Sept 21. Vevo.com is the No. 3 video site on the web with 43.7 million viewers in June.

It was only a few years ago that in order to launch and promote their artists labels, managers and agents had to negotiate and sometimes beg MTV for slots. It certainly isn’t that way anymore. It seems the labels don’t even care about it anymore. For Universal and its artists, being exclusively on-line is just fine.

According to reports from the conference, the music industry seems to be excited and looking forward to the positive changes in the field.  Despite the uncontrolled decline of CD sales and the rise of online and offline counterfeiting, legitimate sales of digital music is continuing to grow.  According to Yobie Benjamin at the San Francisco Chronicle:

Artists, managers and agents are no longer under the thumb of radio or music TV program directors. They don’t have to pay payola for airtime. Today it’s about your Twitter feed, your social networking creds and your relationship to the music bloggers. SPIN Magazine and Rolling Stone used to be the holy grail of music stardom… Not anymore…

Agents do not waste their time trying to get the programming director of some rock and roll radio station to return their calls any more.

Mass media is being replaced by pin-point precise media. Music today is more focused on the audience of one rather than getting on some shock music jock’s playlist. And why not? A single person on Twitter can have 10,000 followers so the multiplier effect is astronomical. Hitting the right fan returns far more results than being on a Sirius satellite channel or a mention on Billboard magazine.

Besides being interesting, there is a reason for putting this information in a blog about Clay Aiken. It seems to me that we need to see these numbers and their meaning and realize that we can support Clay more by being a viable force on the Internet sites.  FaceBook and Twitter are now more important than ever.  If we truly want to support Clay, we all need to become familiar with these great sites instead of relying on our younger fans to do it all.  There isn’t one of us who cannot get a FaceBook account or be active on Twitter.  Yes, it will take a bit of time, but the rewards are worth every minute.

I did a quick look at the twitter numbers of some music stars…

*  Eminem has  1,416,455 followers

*  Lady Gaga has   5,754,535 followers

*  Adam Lambert has  613728 followers

*  Kelly Clarkson has  346,611 followers

*  Glee has   250,242 followers

*  CANN (that’s us) has   2,302 followers

Do you know how many followers Clay has?  Well, why not look it up?  I think you will be surprised!

What do you think?  Can we help each other and get more facebook and twitter support for Clay?

Clay Aiken News Network is an unofficial fansite. We are not affiliated in any way with Clay Aiken or his management. This website was made by fans for fans and makes no impression or impersonation of the official site, which can be found under the domain clayaiken.com.

Comments

  1. It looks to me like we need to push this. Clay needs our support and so I will sign up for twitter. I only hope I can get some help!!

    Thank you for all the information in this blog. I enjoy the information you give to us!!

  2. Fascinating!!! The industry is changing, and has been for a very long time. It's good to see that the labels are actually paying attention. UMG has been at the forefront of most of the major shifts – they are a forward looking label which only helps to serve their artists.

    I tweet and FB. I also have certain twitter updates feed to my phone so that I'm on top of what's going on. It's a great way to keep stay up on what's happening with very little outlay of time.

    Thanks for the great article!

  3. I hope the industry can capitalize on the technology that's out there. They fell behind and have a lot of catching up to do. I'm still waiting for the concerts that can also be accessed by internet feeds!

  4. Interesting!!!! We have all seen the music industry changing over the years….It's time to step up to the plate…. I will start on twitter. I have not followed Clay or anyone…but will do my part….We need the Claynation to be informed on this.

    Wonderful research Musicfan…Things are a changing!!!!!!

    Hugs,
    Judy

  5. Thanks musicfan…I had no idea of how staggering the numbers are!
    I am for anything that will help Clay Aiken. I am on facebook and twitter and following Clay, unfortunately I have very limited knowledge of to use these social medias.

  6. This is certainly an eye opening article for me. I do use Facebook but I am going to start twittering also. What an impact they could have for Clay.Times are certainly changing and I am glad to read all about it here. Thanks so much!

  7. Very interesting statistics. I'm quite sure I'm following/am a fan on twitter and facebook for Clay. That's such an easy way to support Clay.

  8. Great article, musicfan! I've shied away from FB and Twitter, but it certainly seems like I've got to be headed in that direction. Your article was very eye-opening and I can see Clay needs us on there supporting him. Thanks for keeping us up to date on the changes in the music industry.

    Val

  9. Musicfan, thanks so much for this article. Finally, payola is losing it's place in the music scene. Yes, the future of music is on the Internet and we can help Clay Aiken to keep up by supporting him on FB, Twitter and downloads of his music. I, for one, have been doing this for along time. Good to see that others are too.

  10. Very interesting article. I'm very happy to see the music industry taken out of the hands of a few powerful people and put back into the hands of the people who hear the music. It's about damn time!

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