Behind The Campaign :: Andrew McMahon In The Wilderness

Andrew McMahon signed with Nettwerk Music Group in March 2023. The team explain how they lined things up for his new album. The post Behind The Campaign :: Andrew McMahon In The Wilderness appeared first on Music Ally. Source: Music ally

Behind The Single: How to connect an emotional track with global audiences

The post Behind The Single: How to connect an emotional track with global audiences appeared first on Music Ally. Source: Music ally

Campaigns :: 3 May 2023 – Pink Floyd, Sigur Rós, J Dilla, Squid

Pink Floyd in Australia, digital goodies from Sigur Rós, Stem Player works with J Dilla’s estate, and Squid’s interactive game. The post Campaigns :: 3 May 2023 – Pink Floyd, Sigur Rós, J Dilla, Squid appeared first on Music Ally. Source: Music ally

Behind The Campaign :: CKay

Nigerian Afrobeats singer CKay put out his first EP in 2017 through Chocolate City and the label then entered into a partnership with Warner Music Africa in 2019 where he was identified as an act with international potential. The post Behind The Campaign :: CKay appeared first on Music Ally. Source: Music ally

Tools :: Immensity

It’s crucial for artists to have a strong online presence – however, with so many platforms available, it can be challenging to know which ones are impactful and where to focus your marketing efforts. This is the problem Immensity hopes to solve. Immensity is a tool that takes all the data from online platforms – as well […]

Behind The Campaign :: Louis Tomlinson

Lisa Wilkinson, director of UK marketing (new recordings) at BMG, explains how they looked to reposition him in the market, what learnings were coming from his live success as well as his own festival, and more. The post Behind The Campaign :: Louis Tomlinson appeared first on Music Ally. Source: Music ally

Behind the Single: PinkPantheress, Ice Spice – ‘Boy’s a liar Pt. 2’

The post Behind the Single: PinkPantheress, Ice Spice – ‘Boy’s a liar Pt. 2’ appeared first on Music Ally. Source: Music ally

Campaigns :: 6 April 2023 – Pink Floyd, Apoki, Dice, Cari Lekebusch

New and noteworthy campaigns from Pink Floyd, Apoki, Dice and Cari Lekebusch. The post Campaigns :: 6 April 2023 – Pink Floyd, Apoki, Dice, Cari Lekebusch appeared first on Music Ally. Source: Music ally

Behind The Campaign :: SZA

US R&B singer SZA released SOS, her second album, in December 2022. Sej Jheeta (marketing manager and A&R at RCA in the UK) and Luke Smith (digital marketing manager at RCA in the UK) explain the campaign. The post Behind The Campaign :: SZA appeared first on Music Ally. Source: Music ally

The Sandbox Guide to… Spotify’s new marketing tools

Spotify’s recent “Stream On” event generated headlines for the unveiling of its mobile app’s new homepage, but it included a number of other product announcements that, for music marketers, are just as significant – this Guide looks into those tools, and how labels, artists, and their teams can use them to creatively connect with new […]

Behind The Campaign :: Jagwar Twin

Josh Hubberman, CTHDRL co-founder and Jagwar Twin’s manager, explains how the campaign for the album 33 took shape. The post Behind The Campaign :: Jagwar Twin appeared first on Music Ally. Source: Music ally

Tools :: Laylo

Imagine you have a new artist release coming up. Or perhaps you’d like to announce a new show or a new merchandise addition to an artist’s shop. How are you going to promote it? The simple approach is to create a post on social media – which involves an element of hope that the algorithm […]

Tools :: Offstage

Offstage is an invite-only data and analytics tool. It brings together data from different platforms (ticketing, streaming, social media etc) and provides teams with an insights tool powered by AI. The post Tools :: Offstage appeared first on Music Ally. Source: Music ally

Behind The Campaign :: Ayra Starr

Afrobeats singer Ayra Starr released her debut album, 19 & Dangerous, in 2021 and started to build a presence outside of her home country of Nigeria, working with Mavin Records and Platoon to achieve this. Krish Kudhail (senior artist marketing manager at Platoon) and Claudia Arach (streaming lead at Platoon) explain how TikTok was prioritised […]

Campaigns :: 8 March 2023 – U2, 50 years of hip-hop, Nina Simone, Yoko Ono

The post Campaigns :: 8 March 2023 – U2, 50 years of hip-hop, Nina Simone, Yoko Ono appeared first on Music Ally. Source: Music ally

The Sandbox Guide to… Creative AI

Music Ally kicked off the year by asking 30 of the music industry’s leading lights what – in the wide world of digital music marketing – they were looking forward to in 2023. The post The Sandbox Guide to… Creative AI appeared first on Music Ally. Source: Music ally

Behind The Single: Sleaford Mods – “UK GRIM”

The post Behind The Single: Sleaford Mods – “UK GRIM” appeared first on Music Ally. Source: Music ally

Behind The Campaign: Interpol

US indie rock band Interpol released The Other Side Of Make-Believe, their seventh studio album, on 15th July 2022. It was their first new album in four years and the campaign was focused on re-introducing the band and also reawakening lapsed listeners. The post Behind The Campaign: Interpol appeared first on Music Ally. Source: Music […]

Behind The Campaign :: Anumita Nadesan

Harshit Agarwal and Raghav Meattle of Big Bang Music explain how they worked with Anumita to capitalise on her social media growth. The post Behind The Campaign :: Anumita Nadesan appeared first on Music Ally. Source: Music ally

Campaigns :: 8 February 2023 – Rihanna & Apple Music, Warner & Roblox, Spinnin’ Records, Dr Dre

Interesting and inventive new campaigns from Rihanna & Apple Music, Warner & Roblox, Spinnin’ Records, and Dr Dre. The post Campaigns :: 8 February 2023 – Rihanna & Apple Music, Warner & Roblox, Spinnin’ Records, Dr Dre appeared first on Music Ally. Source: Music ally

Tools ::

Smartlinks now play a vital role in music marketing campaigns. And the marketplace of link providers has grown accordingly – and so has competition among them. Platforms are constantly evolving and adding new features and integrations to diversify themselves and offer a USP to customers. is a relative newcomer, launching in 2021 – eight […]

Behind The Campaign :: Shinedown

Shinedown released Planet Zero, their seventh studio album, in June 2022. To build their profile in the UK, Blackstar Agency were brought in to explore ways to connect them with new audiences. The post Behind The Campaign :: Shinedown appeared first on Music Ally. Source: Music ally

Tools :: Wavo – 2023 profile

What’s changed that warrants a Wavo Tools update? It now offers two discrete ways for music marketers to engage with the platform. The post Tools :: Wavo – 2023 profile appeared first on Music Ally. Source: Music ally

Sandbox Campaigns of the Year: 2022’s best music marketing campaigns

It’s back: and the 2022 issue of our utterly essential Campaigns of the Year report is as big as ever. With 60 highly-detailed case studies, it’s the most popular Sandbox publication for a reason: a huge, vital resource for anyone working in music marketing. It’s packed with case studies, data, KPIs, ideas and learnings – straight from the teams […]

The Sandbox Guide to… Marketing Latin music globally

For the last Sandbox Guide of 2022, we look at how you can successfully launch Latin music in your own territories. The post The Sandbox Guide to… Marketing Latin music globally appeared first on Music Ally. Source: Music ally

Behind The Campaign :: Hot Chip

The post Behind The Campaign :: Hot Chip appeared first on Music Ally. Source: Music ally

Tools :: Levellr

The original fan community concept – artist fan clubs – have shifted from physical mailing lists to email lists and now to online messaging platforms like Telegram and Discord. Fan communities are highly desirable at the moment, allowing direct communication between the artist and their most devoted fans. But building your online communities on messaging […]

Behind The Campaign :: Tears For Fears

The post Behind The Campaign :: Tears For Fears appeared first on Music Ally. Source: Music ally

Campaigns :: 16 November 2022 – Taylor Swift, Amazon Christmas exclusives, Shygirl, UK Charts

A look at four innovative campaigns from Taylor Swift, Amazon, Shygirl and the UK Charts. The post Campaigns :: 16 November 2022 – Taylor Swift, Amazon Christmas exclusives, Shygirl, UK Charts appeared first on Music Ally. Source: Music ally

Behind The Single

The post Behind The Single appeared first on Music Ally. Source: Music ally

Tools :: Trendpop

Trendpop is a SaaS platform and a data-driven tool designed to help users strategise their TikTok presence and navigate the app’s ecosystem. The post Tools :: Trendpop appeared first on Music Ally. Source: Music ally

Behind The Campaign :: Joakim Berg

Swedish singer and songwriter Joakim Berg first came to prominence as lead singer of pop/rock band Kent. They split in 2016 and thereafter Berg worked behind the scenes. His solo debut, Jag Fortsätter Glömma was released in early 2022 and came as a surprise to many. The post Behind The Campaign :: Joakim Berg appeared […]

The Sandbox guide to… Catalogue Sync

Catalogue music is having a moment: a full third of Spotify’s weekly Top Songs are now catalogue tracks, and catalogue syncs – Kate Bush, we’re looking at you – have been big news this year. Catalogue music brings with it mood, authenticity, pedigree – and money… but only if you get it right.  So how can you […]

Call for entries :: Music Ally Sandbox Marketing Campaigns of the Year 2022

Every December, our final Sandbox report of the year highlights the best, most original and most impactful music marketing campaigns from around the world. The post Call for entries :: Music Ally Sandbox Marketing Campaigns of the Year 2022 appeared first on Music Ally. Source: Music ally

Behind The Single – 19th October 2022

The post Behind The Single – 19th October 2022 appeared first on Music Ally. Source: Music ally

Behind The Campaign :: Nova Twins

Melissa Fernie (head of audience engagement at FUGA), Peter Capstick (label manager of Marshall Records) and Rupert King (Blue Raincoat Artists, the artist management arm of Blue Raincoat Music) explain why the band signed to Marshall Records for their new album, how their campaigning around Black identity and gender identity gave them new impetus, where […]

Campaigns :: 19 October 2022 – Ed Sheeran, The Kinks, Erland Cooper, The Spice Girls

Campaigns :: 19 October 2022 – Ed Sheeran, The Kinks, Erland Cooper, Spice Girls. The post Campaigns :: 19 October 2022 – Ed Sheeran, The Kinks, Erland Cooper, The Spice Girls appeared first on Music Ally. Source: Music ally

Tools :: TikTok tools round-up

As the recent debate around the pressure on artists to go viral on TikTok shows, the short-form video platform remains one of the most important tools in artist marketing. However, as always, strategy is key and music marketers have a growing number of tools available to refine their artist’s TikTok strategy.  This week, we’re walking […]

Behind The Campaign :: Anitta

The post Behind The Campaign :: Anitta appeared first on Music Ally. Source: Music ally

The Sandbox Guide to… online launch events

Using online events to publicise a new release – or other major announcement – is what counts in 2022. But it’s also easy for one to fizzle out on the launchpad. So whether you want to sneak out snippets on TikTok, or build a virtual showcase in Roblox, this Sandbox Guide explains how to create […]

Tools :: Cirkay

Cirkay co-founder Simon Scott has a lot of thoughts about web3 technology and how it connects with fans. “No one is going to become a fan unless they buy something” is one. “The most important thing that web3 has got to do for an artist is to make fans buy again” is another, as is, “In […]

Behind The Campaign: Rêve

Canadian singer Rêve broke through in her home country with her third single, ‘CTRL + ALT + DEL’ in September 2021, and it has since been certified gold there. The team at Universal Music Canada talk through the campaign and their plans for the future. The post Behind The Campaign: Rêve appeared first on Music […]

Behind The Campaign :: Lucy Dacus

The post Behind The Campaign :: Lucy Dacus appeared first on Music Ally. Source: Music ally

Campaigns :: 4 May 2022 – Slipknot, Marvin Gaye, Beardyman, Get It Right (From A Genuine Site)

The post Campaigns :: 4 May 2022 – Slipknot, Marvin Gaye, Beardyman, Get It Right (From A Genuine Site) appeared first on Music Ally. Source: Music ally

Tools :: Subtext

While being active on the big social media platforms is part of virtually any artist’s job, it’s often other places we think of when it comes to truly nurturing fanbases. If artists want to ensure their messages reach their audiences, SMS marketing can be an effective solution and Subtext has a pretty strong offer for […]

The Sandbox Guide to… Marketing in 2022

Our first Guide of 2022 is designed to help map out your year ahead. We asked 25 thought-leaders in the modern music industry – including Aaron Bogucki, global head of audience development at AWAL, Beth Appleton, chief marketing officer at Jaxsta, Devraj Sanyal, MD & CEO of Universal Music India and South Asia, and Molly […]

The Sandbox Guide to.. The future of sync, and what it means for you

Today, hundreds of thousands of artists release music and an equally huge number of content creators require music for their output. Sync has become a more nuanced instrument for all involved – and one that’s still a moneymaker and a powerful marketing tool. We’re taking a look at how sync has changed, what the real needs […]

Behind The Campaign :: Illenium

US electronic DJ and producer Illenium released Fallen Embers, his fourth studio album, in July 2021. To build excitement ahead of the album reveal, a real-world scavenger hunt in Denver was set up to let fans hear a chunk of a new track early. Ali Schlueter (who runs digital marketing for Illenium), Billy Zarro (marketing […]

Sandbox Issue 272: DSP’s Emerging Talent Programmes – how do you get on one, what happens if you do, and is there a catch?

Lead: Each DSP has a programme dedicated to supporting new artists: weaponising the platform by endorsing them to a large audience, and hopefully accelerating their careers. Places on these programmes are, of course, keenly sought after – so what is experienced by that lucky few? Is it really the win-win it seems? What do artists need […]

Sandbox Issue 271: Finding a marketing balance and seeking success on Twitch

Lead: Which Twitch Mix Fits? – Music is essential to the Twitch experience, but Twitch’s formal relationship with music is still a little murky – albeit with the launch of the licensed Soundtrack by Twitch feature offering welcome progress. The power of Twitch as a marketing, communication, and community-building tool is also still open to debate […]

Sandbox Issue 270: Always-on my mind: how do artists avoid social media burn-out?

Lead: Always-on my mind: Artists have long accepted – sometimes reluctantly – that their role includes intimate direct-to-fan digital connectivity, usually via Social Media. Grinding out content on multiple platforms, each with unique creative, time, and emotional pressures, was a stressful enough existence before Coronavirus made the need to be always-online seem all the more urgent. […]

Sandbox Issue 269: Indie-Visible: balancing Indie rock marketing on streaming and IRL

Lead: Indie-Visible – Marketing indie rock bands on streaming platforms can be tricky for a number of reasons: their traditionally album-based release cycle goes counter to the current approach of endless singles; their aesthetic, ethos and fandom require patience and context; and while their fanbase wants their favourite artists on streaming services, they also demand special physical products […]

Sandbox Issue 268: YouTube Premiere Playbook

Lead: YouTube Premiere Playbook – Youtube offers dizzying depth of content (500 hours of video uploaded each minute) and breadth of fan access (over half of music fans regularly watch music videos on the platform). It also means that uploading a great music video is not enough – artists must reach the fans that care and […]

Sandbox Issue 267 :: The Optimism Issue. 2021

Lead: 2021 – The Optimism Issue:  Let’s not dwell any longer than necessary on the seemingly never-ending year of challenges that was 2020. In this issue we look forward with optimism and find many reasons to be cheerful in 2021. We asked our international panel of industry experts to explain what gave them hope in […]

Sandbox Issue 264: Lo-fi, hi-impact – how lo-fi hip hop brands are chilling out millions of devoted listeners

Lead: Lo-fi hip hop is no longer simply a crackly, jazzy sub-genre – it’s a huge business, with millions subscribing to multi-platform playlists and albums of atmospheric songs to relax, study, chill and sleep to. We explore how this unassuming background music has quietly grown into an enormous DIY empire, how mood music is resonating with […]

Sandbox Issue 263: A brand new experience: creating activations that connect in a non-live world

Lead: Experiential brand activations in a non-live world – Creating effective brand activations has never been easy – but there was one basic starting point: find an event with lots of people, and connect with them. With concerts and festivals curtailed for the next six months at least, brands are partnering with musicians online to create […]

Sandbox Issue 262: Key Lessons from Sandbox Summit Global

Lead: Sandbox Summit Global – Over five days at the end of September, we held our Sandbox Summit Global conference. For this Sandbox report, we’re digging into what we learned from the event and how it relates to the wider industry: from streaming innovation (or a lack of it) and Covid-disrupted release schedules to analytics overload, knock-on […]

Sandbox Issue 261: The return of the fanclub? Crowdfunding in 2020

Lead: Crowdfunding in 2020 – Crowdfunding is not a new idea – but following the nosedive of recorded music sales in the early noughts, crowdfunding became a tantalising concept: fanbases could be leveraged into recording costs. Despite some successes, it has remained a relatively niche concern. That is, until now. Covid-19 has led to a rise […]

Sandbox Issue 260: Twitch for Artists

Lead: Twitch for artists – Artists were drifting towards livestreaming platform Twitch before COVID-19 hit, and Twitch has been making overtures to musicians for a while. But since live performance was halted, interest in the platform has never been higher, and Twitch is welcoming artists – and their fans – with open arms. But Twitch demands […]

Sandbox Issue 259: Six Months On, What Next?

Lead: The effect of COVID-19, six months on. This Sandbox issue hosts the launch of a new Music Ally monthly feature: our Global Experts Panel. We’ve assembled a panel of industry leaders from around the world, from many sectors of the music business, and each month we’ll put a single question to them on a pressing issue. […]

More speakers for Sandbox Summit Global including mxmtoon, Spotify & Twitch

Music Ally is excited to announce more speakers and networking details for our forthcoming Sandbox Summit Global event.    New Speakers mxmtoon, Artist (US) The Future of Playlists Lizzy Szabo, Editor, North America, Spotify (US) Genreless Playlists, The Future of Playlists Tracy Patrick Chan, Head of Music Product & Engineering, Twitch (US) Focus on Twitch […]

Sandbox Issue 258: KIDS’ STUFF. Music’s youngest and most powerful consumers

Lead: we report back on our recent New Kids On The Block: Insight Into A New Generation online conference that we ran in conjunction with UK trade bodies the BPI and ERA, drawing out the 10 key lessons from the different panels and presentations. These include: children are much more active (and increasingly so) than previously presumed; […]

Sandbox Issue 257: Filter Tips. Making camera effects connect

Lead: Music-centric filters on social apps are designed to appeal not just to hardcore fans but also to get enough “shareability” to pull in potential new fans. They are also being used by labels themselves to create a form of augmented branding. We look at who is doing them well, if they are worth the investment and […]

Sandbox Issue 256: PRIMAL STREAM 📱🎧 Making lockdown concerts work

Lead: Livestreams have moved to try and fill the massive hole left by the total cancellation of tours and festivals around the world. As more acts do them, however, it becomes incrementally harder to stand out and draw in big enough audiences to make them worthwhile. We speak to those building a whole new gig economy here […]

First speakers and agenda details for Sandbox Summit Global

Today we’re announcing the first confirmed speakers and outline agenda for our Sandbox Summit Global conference, which takes place online in September. The event will include Platoon’s Denzyl Feigelson in conversation with Q&A’s Troy Carter, as well as interviews with K Camp (the artist behind the viral hit ‘Lottery (Renegade)’ and business partner Genius. The […]

Sandbox Issue 255: K-Pop. What the Global Music Industry can learn from South Korea

Lead: K-pop is eating the world whole and is changing what marketing – especially superfan-centric marketing – can do. We speak to those working in and around the K-pop world to learn how the genre markets itself, where its acts engage with their fans to build incredible levels of loyalty, why trans-media marketing underscores everything they do […]

Sandbox Issue 254: The Rise of Music Podcasts

Lead: If you aren’t making or appearing on a podcast, do you actually exist? Even with DSPs and record labels investing in them heavily and building whole podcasting divisions, there is still the issue of licensing music for them that is holding back their creative potential. Yet beyond that knotty problem, the sector is still an […]

Sandbox Issue 253: Music Marketing in Lockdown

Lead: We are now several weeks into lockdown and have moved far, far beyond just “doing a livestream”. There was some wavering at the start as to whether albums should be delayed by several weeks or brought forward, but now everyone is having to roll their sleeves up and get on with it. The music […]

Sandbox Summit Global online event set for September

Music Ally is delighted to announce that we are taking our successful Sandbox Summit events online with a new global edition taking place from 21st September to 25th September across two hours each day. The event is supported by Linkfire and Chartmetric and is entirely free to access thanks to this support. The event will […]

Sandbox Issue 251: Streaming and Music’s new formats

Lead: The playlist hasn’t killed the album… yet. Instead, artists and labels are caught between both and are starting to experiment with the shapes that releases can now take. Justin Bieber has begun chopping up his album into a series of EPs, designed in part to find the sweet spot on streaming services that drive […]

Sandbox Issue 250: The power of smaller playlists

Lead: The likes of New Music Friday and Today’s Top Hits might theoretically get your music in front of the most people; but if they are not listening, then what’s the point? In a business that has long run on the assumption that “big is best”, the opposite is proving true when it comes to […]

Sandbox Issue 249: What music can learn from YouTube’s biggest channels

Lead: Music is critical to YouTube while the music industry (beyond the politics of the value gap debate) is hugely reliant on the platform. But so too are other content types. We look at the biggest channels on YouTube generally – including categories such as comedy, education, film, sports and gaming (as well as music […]

Sandbox Issue 248: PERSONALISATION. Music marketing makes it all about YOU

Lead: Personalisation is a powerful way to stand out in a noisy marketplace and to make fans feel involved with things. It all, however, has to be handled with care as one person’s “tailored messaging” is another person’s spam. We look at how the personal – from recommendations and mixtapes to merchandise and location – […]

Sandbox Issue 247: All Triller, No Filler: Music’s next big launchpad?

Lead: Triller is not a TikTok killer – but it is certainly proving to be a hearty contender. At the moment, it is strongest in the US and it skews heavily towards hip-hop as its in-built soundtrack. Its ambitions are, however, more global and the genres it covers will naturally expand as it grows internationally. […]

Sandbox Issue 246: BAD INFLUENCE. Social media’s new fault lines

Lead: Influencers are a growing part of music marketing but tighter rules on what they can do (and how explicit they must be in declaring their interests), as well as a series of scandals, are making working here increasingly complicated – if not increasingly risky. Some are arguing they still have power, but others are […]

Sandbox Issue 245: Catalogue Marketing Rejuvenated

Lead: With pretty much everything available at all times, the fundamentals of catalogue marketing have had to bend to the needs of the streaming market and the social media landscape. There is still a role for the deluxe anniversary boxset, but finding new ways to shake up the old and shine new light on both […]

Sandbox Issue 244: How to Make a Big Artist Comeback

Lead: Don’t call it a comeback. Actually, DO call it a comeback. Fans today not only expect all the music in the world to be instantly available, they also expect every pop star to be available at all times. But musicians need to step away from the limelight and off the promotional treadmill every now […]

Sandbox Issue 243: The Last 10 Years and The Next 10 Years of Music Marketing

Welcome to the first Sandbox of 2020. Lead: It is now 10 years since we published the very first edition of Sandbox, so to start a new decade we speak to marketers from around the world about the tools and trends that shaped the past decade of music marketing as well as the ones they believe […]

Sandbox Issue 242: The Year’s Best Music Marketing Campaigns. 2019

It is that time again when we highlight the best music marketing campaigns of the year. We genuinely were flooded with entries this year and therefore had to increase the number that made the final cut to 50 simply because there were so many incredible campaigns to choose from. We list everything in alphabetical order (by […]

Sandbox Issue 241: Music Merchandising Moves On

A T-shirt or a flimsy tour programme was the bulk of merchandise in the “old days” – mass-produced items to shift quickly when an act was on tour. Fortunately, things have changed dramatically in recent years – with a clear drive to be as environmentally aware as possible. Print-on-demand technology is also allowing acts to […]

Sandbox Issue 240: Music Marketing’s Wellness and Fitness Drive

People are increasingly attuned to the need to look after their mental and their physical health – and music can and does play a big role here. The gym playlist is one thing, but acts crafting albums for meditation apps and artists working with a new generation of fitness brands is something else entirely. We […]

Sandbox Issue 239: Music and Advertising’s tense union

Lead: The old rules of advertising are long gone – as is a lot of the inherent guesswork around advertising’s effectiveness. In its place has come greater tracking of ad spend and ad impact, but the entire process itself has become much more convoluted. We speak to those working in this rapidly changing world to […]

Sandbox Issue 238: Remixes Hit Saturation Point

Lead: Lil Nas X might have broken on TikTok but it was his deft use of multiple remixes (and collaborations) that kept ‘Old Town Road’ in the air throughout most of 2019. He claims he has 25 remixes of follow-up track ‘Panini’ ready to go, although this might prove to be the most high-profile case […]

Sandbox Issue 237: VIEWTUBE. When Music Video Plays Get Juiced

Lead: Sony Music India artist Badshah claimed to have broken the 24-hour record on YouTube for 75m plays of his track ‘Paagal’ in July. Then people started asking questions. It eventually emerged that the track’s success had been boosted by TrueView ads before and during other YouTube videos, all of which counted toward the opening […]

Sandbox Issue 236: Power Plays. THE NEXT STEP FOR PLAYLISTS

Lead: Playlists are still enormously important for breaking acts and for building careers – but they are increasingly a moving target that gets harder and harder to hit. As they change what they are, how they work and what they do, those marketing through playlists could find themselves shunted back to square one. This is […]

Sandbox Issue 235: Talking TikTok Triumphs

Lead: TikTok is  an essential consideration for artist marketing in 2019, particularly for pop acts. But for all the strategies and careful coordination, the best things on the app are often those that blindside everyone. We spotlight the best recent uses of music (and surprise catalogue reappearances) on TikTok in recent months and also look […]

Sandbox Issue 234: The New Era Of Music Videos

Lead: In the 1970s, “pop promos” (as they were called) were the preserve of the mega-star act, but after the launch of MTV in 1981 they became standard practice across the industry. The arrival of YouTube in 2005 may have blown apart MTV’s dominance but the format of music videos did not change much; it […]

Sandbox Issue 233: Shopping Around: Making Online Stores Add Up

Lead: Working with D2C experts is one part of the business, but changes in how social media sites are structuring themselves can offer acts new ways to sell products to fans of all stripes. We look at where social platforms are being best used to sell merchandise, how casual fans (and not just superfans) can […]

Sandbox issue 232: Music Marketing in Trigger Cities

Lead: This issue we have a special extended feature looking into the phenomenon of Trigger Cities. These are places outside of the obvious music markets that are now – due to streaming and how algorithms are fed – playing a key role in helping break artists and genres. This represents a whole new dynamic for […]

Sandbox issue 231: Conversions. Tracking Cause and Effect in fan marketing

Lead: “Half the money I spend on advertising is wasted; the trouble is I don’t know which half,” is a quote commonly attributed to Philadelphian retailer John Wanamaker in the 1800s and it has haunted the advertising and marketing worlds ever since. Spending money and hoping for a consumer reaction previously involved stacking up a […]

Sandbox issue 230: Why Email Marketing Is More Important Than Ever

Lead: Email marketing is far from dead. We look at why it is still relevant, how email tools and platforms are getting smarter and where they are allowing users greater ways to target audiences, segment audiences and personalise messaging. Yet there are still many pitfalls, so in this issue we outline how to use email […]

Sandbox Issue 227: TIK-ING BOXES. How TikTok can change music marketing.

Lead: TikTok is far more than a novelty app for people to whip up memes that have a shorter shelf life than a carton of milk. It is now breaking acts and songs in a way that other platforms cannot. We look at what the music industry is doing to capitalise on its phenomenal growth […]

The Dry Streams Paradox

Are you frustrated with the size of your fanbase? Tired of banging your head against a brick wall with ticket and merchandise sales? Unable to reconcile your streaming figures with the number of genuine fans? Then you might be suffering from The Dry Streams Paradox. What’s that? It’s the challenge that a growing number of […]

Sandbox Issue 226: What people just don’t “get” about digital marketing

Lead: what digital marketing trends are most underrated or simply misunderstood in 2019? That’s the question we put to the music marketing community and got them to hold forth on the subject. This resulted in a lot of ideas and a lot of new paths for marketing this year and beyond. Campaigns: TikTok goes all […]

Sandbox Issue 225: Retargeting in an Age of Privacy

Lead: Tighter regulations around retargeting have made the job of digital marketing much trickier to navigate. What this has meant is that marketers have to get smarter. We speak to those working around these rules about why – if they put the work in – this can be more blessing than curse. Campaigns: Billie Eilish […]

Sandbox Issue 224: Up Hit Creek. THE DRY STREAMS PARADOX

Lead: The Dry Streams Paradox is when there is a huge gap between the number of streams an act gets and the number of fans they have or can reach. Just because someone plays one of your songs, it does not follow that they even know what your name is. Does this all mean that […]

Sandbox Issue 222: SYNC IN. Music Synchronisation Gets Smarter

Lead: as synchronisation grows in importance, a new wave of tools is emerging to make that whole process work seamlessly and smarter, covering both micro-licensing and pitch management. We look at the key players here, what they do and where they are taking synch – plus consider how AI is set to shake things up […]

Sandbox Issue 221: Fake Views. Lies, damned lies and music statistics

Lead: Smoke and mirrors have always been part of music, but when it comes to data, truth is starting to play second fiddle to hype. The nefarious and ruthless are finding ways to “massage” social media and streaming numbers while offering the desperate and gullible a quick fix. But the platforms are getting wise to […]

Sandbox Issue 220: Vault-ing Ambitions

Lead: While Netflix viewers are currently obsessing over Marie Kondo and her rules on de-cluttering the home (instructing viewers to only hold onto the things that “spark joy”), a different approach needs to happen in digital marketing. Rather than binning everything but the essentials, archivists and markets should be retaining as much as they can […]

Sandbox Issue 219: The Tools and Trends That Will Shape 2019

Lead: A new year and a new slate. To kick off the year, we speak to marketers around the business and around the world about what tools they think will be indispensable and what trends they believe will shape 2019. From AR filters and scarcity to algorithmic personalisation of playlists, the continued rise of Latin […]

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