…is a proprietary, “Full Stack,” Internet-Based, worldwide system for the discovery, cultivation, marketing, distribution, and monetization and administration of music artists, song and recording copyrights. SDM’s core focus is on procuring and bringing value to copyrights.
What differentiates Socially Driven Music from other music companies and startups, you ask? Well, we all know that there are plentiful platforms offering analyses of the music industry’s current woes. But there are woefully few who generate and execute ideas to innovate change for the betterment of the artists, songwriters and their lifeblood — copyrights (a valuable asset equatable to real estate). SDM exists for positive, disruptive change. It’s an artist-centric company for all, with a particular interest in emerging artists and writers. With an emphasis on not only centralized social media monitoring and publishing, but also powerful messaging systems like Slack, and advanced analytics, fans can become fan/ambassadors (Musicpreneurs) and work with our music industry mentors to constantly identify and support up and coming artists in an array of largely untapped ways.
In a previous essay, I spoke about fungibility in the context of needing to invent new systems of distribution that can, to a large extent, be substituted for each other. Think about it as analagous to water taking the shape of any vessel it’s in. This effectively levels the playing field for developing artists to emerge due to the potential of wider-ranging exposure.
SDM begins with the company’s long-tail model of an army of fans and local but interconnected advocates of hometown or regional talent, motivated by purpose in addition to traditional passive listening. It’s a reawakening of the recognition that music is ubiquitous and can inspire social good as the underscore of one’s life. Through multi-channel distribution, music and its impact are not mutually exclusive, but are more inextricably entwined and far-reaching than ever.
Caring about social causes is baked into SDM’s DNA. We rally fans, artists and songwriters to interact around mutually shared passions for helping others. From anti-bullying, clean water, Alzheimers, Cancer, American Lung Association, patient and senior advocacy, racial, gender and ethnic equality, homelessness, animal rights, substance abuse, veterans, hunger, anti-terrorism, eradicating sexual abuse, and more (see the Socially Driven Music landing page ), communities of caring people can utilize music to empower solutions. While the music industry has a wonderful history of organizing for charity and other important events, we extend this good work to a daily chorus by encouraging fan and artist collaboration for mutually shared social impact passions.
But there’s more to realize and accomplish. I’ve also previously suggested that there’s a transition underway from the usual celebrity hierarchy to a fan-based egalitarianism. Check this out:
Ultimately, it’s all about stories. Some of the ideas and topics that inspire artists can be derived by “Following” or “Liking” fans’ interests on social media. Clearly, artists can more easily resonate with fans with material influenced by what’s trending among them and their special interest groups. And all of the special interest groups can mobilize their communities around an artist who is championing its cause. This is in contrast to entirely relying on the historical model of depending upon fans to react to subject matter pushed out by artists. Brands understand this bilateral appeal of not only speaking to the self-image of their customers, but also motivating those same people to identify with a particular group. Artists must embrace these proven concepts and proactively grow their audiences rather than only passively depending upon listeners to find them. The force-fed radio playlists that once drove audience segmentation and corresponding marketing have yielded to diverse, multicultural, streamed playlists around heterogenous topics. The subjects of diversified playlists can literally be anything and are most seductive when curated to tell a story to an already receptive audience. People love stories.
Imagine playlists about any social cause that’s important to you, and which songs and in what order you’d create your story. You might want to also construct a companion video compilation. Artists will want to offer their content to popular lists of fans that represent the same brand appeal that they strive to attain or sustain.
Now envision playlists about other subjects…any subjects. Let’s visualize your house and your community, for example. What city is it in? What songs capture the amenities and spirit of your city? How would you relay the emotion you’ve experienced while living in the house? What about the ambience of the home and signifance of sharing it with your family or cohabitants? The gathering of friends and family at the Holidays? How do you paint an audio picture, a story about the warmth and safety you feel upon returning to your home base foundation each day?
Could you use this playlist as a marketing tool on social media and in conjunction with a real estate company like Opendoor to more efficaciously sell the house when it’s time to move? Absolutely! Or a home buyer could create a playlist to describe their desired home. Or that playlist could greet a potential buyer at the house streamed from an illustrative wall painting of the city or house through an innovative technology from Soundwall. Perhaps you’ll access a narrated guided tour with an app like Detour around your existing or prospective neighborhood, with a representative music playlist collated by you or the person in the new community, respectively. Maybe you’ll want to link to Lowe’s Innovation Labs’ Holoroom for a Virtual Reality redecorating experience complemented with your music list for a visceral experience of how your new home will look and feel with your personal things and sounds. But why else should a music artist care about your playlist?
a) What about connecting the dots of the four company examples mentioned above to exponentially parlay the artists’ reach?
b) Emerging and established artists become more engrained in the local landscape, whether they are actually from the town, or their music is being used to create an ambient impression.
c) Imagine buying a limited edition print of an album cover (or other art commissioned by SDM for its artists) through which, in conjunction with Soundwall, that artist’s music can be streamed throughout your home. Maybe that purchase also entitles you to a Meet & Greet or discounts on tickets and merch. Artists who are associated locally are recommended to other friends, family and social media contacts, locally and elsewhere.
d) Artist participation in the social issues playlists of local constituents in turn propels them into broader logistics and demographics. SDM’s local Musicpreneurs use special interest commonality to grow local fan bases for the artists they embrace to expose them to ever widening opportunities, including to a worldwide network of peer SDM ambassadors.
Want another illustration of the myriad untapped areas for music distribution of new and/or local talent? SDM’s regional Musicpreneurs around the world could create playlists to be included as a link in Dollar Shave Club’s content which would accompany and augment its monthly shipments of razors. The information about the playlists would offer discounts for shows and merch for a combination of discoverable artists and established acts.
So that brings us to licensing. Suffice it to say that Socially Driven Music is expert in the monetization and royalty administration of recording and song copyrights, with additional expertise about needed legislative change for equitable financial reward to music’s creators (HR 1733: Fair Play, Fair Pay; HR 1457: Allocation for Music Producers; HR: 1283: Songwriters Equity Act). Our early on predecessor company in 2000 was prescient with at least two major innovations that SDM will now parlay: It created a JV with mp3.com that is the same model later used in the Awesomeness TV agreements with Kobalt Music (and UMG before that) to cultivate and place new music talent to and from different mediums, and (2) it foresaw the need for, and was among the first to renegotiate, the sync licenses of music in film and television to allow for digital distribution not previously imagined. Today, we are faced with greater nuance and even more multimedia complexities, especially as concerns source music in Virtual Reality.
SDM’s creative and transparent administrative (with applied Blockchain technology as it evolves) functions are designed as complementary parts of a system, with equally artful music licensing strategies concurrently updated to accommodate a much more imaginative distribution paradigm. The company invites strategic partners and would-be competitors for various joint ventures that build upon its combined demonstrated foresight. Many of these partner companies will be attracted to a self-contained music business that is also able to transform music from an expense to a profit center for them through transformative, disruptive licensing strategies (this includes proprietary concepts that we believe will bring proper licensing to You Tube and render its Content ID takedown method obsolete, despite Section 512 of the archaic Digital Millennium Copyright Act).
We are eager to demonstrate these solutions to music creators and end users and increasingly engaged fans. Sign up for our Beta launch here. Fans selected as Musicpreneurs will participate in a revenue share of what they help develop under our program. Music business luminaries (executives, producers, managers, songwriters, etc) who are interested in joining our revenue-sharing Mentor program, please email us at Info@sociallydrivenmusic.com, as should any social good program wishing to greatly expand their constituency.
Stephen Love, Chief Executive Officer (CEO) and President, Socially Driven Music, was one of the co-architects of the legendary ATV Music Group (publishers of the Lennon-McCartney catalogue), where he served as Executive Vice President, Worldwide. His career includes EVP Music, Worldwide, at Carolco Pictures, All American Television and Pearson Television (Fremantle). Long considered a big thinker and visionary, he has extensive experience in international music publishing creative, royalties and overall administration, Film and TV supervision, and negotiation of composer, artist and soundtrack agreements for dozens of productions, as well as being adept at negotiation of all synchronization and master use licenses. SDM is a labor of love (pun intended) to transform the music industry for the benefit of music creators, while motivating social good along the way.
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