MIDiA Research studies high-value streamers, proposes next generation of music products

In the latest study by MIDiA Research, released to its subscribers, new data define high-value music consumers in streaming services, leading to a proposal of future services that for fully monetize music’s best fans.

Authored by MIDiA Research founder Mark Mulligan, the report establishes the music “Aficionado,” the high-value music consumer. Music aficionados drive 61% of music revenue, and under the old models, they would spend hefty amounts on albums each month, and even on downloads at the start of the digital transition. But with streaming services offering all-you-can-listen at a flat rate, the amounts those people are putting into the industry have declined. In fact, 23% of this valuable demographic spends less on downloads than they used to and the same percentage no longer buys more than one album a month.

The thrust of this consumer construct is that Aficionados are under-monetized, even as they are more likely to subscribe to on-demand music services. From this premise, the report conceives of ” 360° music products” that build more complete artist/fan relationship and transactions. The concept mockup shows not just the currently playing track on screen, but also a social feed, photos, lyrics, and other editorial content.

Midia 360 music product concept

Especially among the superfans, Midia Research has found interest in this multimedia approach. The report shows that this group is more willing to pay more for an interactive experience, more willing to buy merchandise or show tickets from a streaming platform, and more willing to pay an artist subscription for exclusive content.

“The next generation of music products needs to be dictated by the objective of meeting consumer needs, not simply driving immediate revenue guarantees,” the report states. “It must be defined by consumer experiences not by business models.”

Mulligan pointed to YouTube as a current example of how artists can benefit from more fan interaction. Videos that connect performers, their personalities, and their stories to superfans have often generated great success; the top five YouTube channels for artists have a cumulative 70 million subscribers.

Launching such an involved music platform with this many moving parts would have challenges, and Mark Mulligan acknowledges that, but also lays out staggered release scenarios in which existing, under-utilized assets are brought to market in new ways.

A report summary and subscription information is here.

Anna Washenko