See Things Differently
With most people’s attention firmly on MySpace and Facebook, it’s too easy for UK labels to overlook the development of social music networks (SMN’s). In reality, MySpace, Facebook, Bebo etc dating sites that happen to feature music. However, the following are music sites pure and simple. It’s suprising therefore how few UK labels use these sites to promote their music. I appreciate these are US based, but in today’s market, where geography doesn’t matter, then surely a fan is a fan, regardless of where they live?
PureVolume.comA stylish site managed by the same people who bought you Virb., even the ads look good. It provides space for Billboards, tours, photos and songs, divided in to playlists and albums. The most downloaded tracks are available in a radio stream.
Fuzz.comA hybrid social network & record label. Any artist can upload their music and photos to this good-looking, usable site. If votes and comments increase then an artist can choose to employ Fuzz.com’s more traditional expertise in marketing & promotion. An intriguing model for how labels can use social networks.
Buzznet.comThis site continues to push the boundaries of ‘social network’ in to new spaces by completely blurring the lines between what is community & magazine. Although it is not centered on music exclusively, it retains a high focus on bands and incorprates artist pages, member profiles and review comments onto the same page.
Haystack.comHaystack continues to push its music network in to completely fresh areas, combining artists together with fans in a compelling combination of playlists, tastemakers and reviews. Fans can create playlists and image banks of their favourite artists making it far more rewarding than MySpace.
Despite the continued dominance of MySpace and Facebook in terms of profile and hits, there are some extremely good networks focusing on music in vibrant and imaginative ways. TV, radio and magazine publishers could all benefit from taking a look at these networks and alter the way they interact with their own readers to take advantage of social network elements.