Reports Music

On Demand In Demand Meeting The Needs Of The On Demand Fan

Report by Mark Mulligan
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The 20,000 Foot View

2014 was undoubtedly streaming’s biggest year yet, growing by XXX and accounting for nearly a third of all digital revenues.  But the market is a long distance yet from being in a position where it can be considered established.  While free streaming, YouTube in particular, is booming, subscriptions remain confined to niche audiences. Meanwhile the fall in music sales that accompanied streaming growth ensures that opinion remains fiercely divided.  The next few years will be ones of transition and require a reassessment both of how streaming can be used to drive revenue in the interim and what the long term impact will be on how fans interact with music and their favourite artists.

Key Findings

  • Radio is still the dominant platform across the US, UK and France with XXX penetration but YouTube is making up ground with XXX penetration
  • YouTube’s role is even stronger among younger consumers– XXX of XXX year olds listen to music radio compared to XXX who watch music videos on YouTube 
  • Piracy is now usurped by free streaming – XXX of consumers stream audio for free compared to XXX who use XXX though mobile piracy is on the rise 
  • Streaming is catalyzing transformations in listening behaviour that will reshape the long term music industry with individual pieces of music getting listened to more widely but less frequently
  • Music subscribers are fickle listeners - XXX only listen to individual albums and tracks a few times while XXX are doing this more than before because they are discovering so much new music 
  • Choice abundance thus leads to more casual fan relationships which means that fewer artists will have big fan bases in XXX years on which to build live music careers
  • Streaming combines elements of sales and radio but also competes directly with each
  • While radio might have the bigger total revenues, music sales deliver the biggest volume of revenue directly back to rights holders and creators so this is where the impact of streaming will be felt most 
  • There will be no hiding place for mediocrity with sub-standard and mediocre music no longer having the revenue safety cushion of dissatisfied purchases
  • Scale will be key to making streaming a success but the biggest stakeholders will benefit first
Companies mentioned in this report: Spotify, Deezer, Pandora, SoundCloud, YouTube, Apple, Vevo, Shazam, SiriusXM

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