The New Music Business: Enabling Musicians To Take Advantage Of New Business Models

from the nice-to-see dept

It seems that whenever we write about various bands embracing new business models, one of the criticisms raised is this idea that we're somehow expecting musicians to also become businessmen to embrace these new models. Nothing could be further from the truth. In fact, we've pointed out that this is exactly the space on which record labels should be focused: helping musicians embrace these new business models, helping to handle the business and the technology, while the musicians focus on the music. Unfortunately, most major record labels still haven't figured this out, due to either legacy issues and contracts, an unwillingness to let go of old business models, or simple cluelessness.

Of course, the longer the major labels take to realize that this is where the market is headed, the bigger the opportunities there are for others to come in and fill that "enablement" gap. There are going to be more and more interesting startups entering the space. One that's starting to get some buzz is TopSpin, which just revealed its business late last week. TopSpin got some press a few months back by getting Yahoo Music boss Ian Rogers to join as CEO. We've written about some of Rogers' cogent writings on the music business before.

TopSpin isn't a record label, but it wants to basically enable all sorts of internet-based business models to work for musicians so that they can focus on making music. From the sound of it, that involves plenty of backend infrastructure, as well as front-end components, so that musicians can easily pick and choose custom, scaleable business models for their website with little effort. The company already has a nice headstart (and even some high profile customers). What may be most interesting, however, is to see how the business model opportunities evolve over time, as TopSpin may grow to have the best understanding of what business models really work, depending on what the circumstances are for the band. That could be incredibly powerful data by itself.
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Filed Under: business models, enabling, marketing, music
Companies: topspin


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  1. icon
    Matt (profile), 24 Jun 2008 @ 9:59am

    like I said the other day

    Like I said, marketing firms will end up helping with server hosting and things of that nature - something that not only is a legitimate business venture but also long-term.

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