The music business model conundrum: how can you be profitable when users expect content to be free?
It’s one of the music industry’s harder truths: users expect content to be free. But what is the alternative? Do you choose subscription, or ad-supported? Do you offer a free service that you then charge for, or do you charge upright and hope users aren’t put off? Which comes first – the chicken, or the egg?
At this Music 4.5 seminar we are looking at building profitable and sustainable business models in the entertainment industry. We will be dissecting the evolving art of profiling, acquiring and engaging with users; new payment and verification technologies and their importance in either capturing users or pushing them to illegal alternatives; and the continually sticky issue of licensing across multiple platforms.
All of this is in the context of two major developments:
-The launch of Apple’s Beats 1 and its freemium-to-premium business model for streaming. Will its subscription-based platform trump all other services, especially with its curated playlists and opportunities for artists to provide exclusive content to fans?
-The European Commission’s Digital Single Market Strategy, which aims to ease content blocking restrictions for streaming music, video and sports content across European borders.
Our expert speakers from across different entertainment sectors will explore the following questions:
• What is the right price point for subscription? Should this vary based on channel? Should different models and technologies be applied to different entertainment content?
• What alternative payment models are suited to different audience segments? Are there clever alternative payment mechanisms that allow users to perhaps ‘snack,’ then pay as they go, or pay via micro-payments? How successful are they?
• Has the consumer audience for music been correctly segmented? Indeed, has it been segmented enough? How do you apply this data to your business plan?
• And, is any business model sustainable when there is a totally free alternative? What are the alternative business models that are not talked about due to the current obsession with freemium?
“Your objective is to grow your user base, to tell a story such that you can IPO or you can sell, and you can exit, and you can put money back in the pockets of your investors. You are not the ones who are investing in developing talent. You are not the ones who are signing artists. And our artists and investment – our creative community – is contracting daily, as a result of the free services that are out there and giving music away, with the objective of you achieving some sort of exit at the end.”
Lohan Presencer, Minstry of Sound
If you have questions about the agenda and speakers, please contact [email protected]
If you are interested in becoming a Music 4.5 sponsor or partner, please contact [email protected]