This morning saw the start of the Ad:Tech Breakfast Briefing series (#adtechbb) for 2010. Today’s speaker was Scott Dinsdale, EVP, Global Digital Operations & New Technology from Sony Music. ”Stories From The Front Line: Digital Transformation In Real Time”
Scott offered some great insights into how the digital world has transformed the music industry for Sony. Here are a few key points:
- Music as a feature: To the music industry, music is a product. To PC makers and broadband providers, it’s not a product, it’s a feature.
- Fast business development cycle: Sony Music develops new technologies that changes how business is done every 3 or 4 months, this cycle used to be years.
- Mobile and online merging: The notion of online and mobile being different is fading away.
- Digital transformation : The effect of digital media has transformed music, movies, financial services, advertising and will change all industries in the future.
- Social Media is scary: The idea of losing control is scary for marketers, however as soon as you try to control social media you fail.
- Brand advocates: Brands need to use their evangelist consumers for further promotion. Confide in them, don’t sell to them.
- Listen to your fans: Artists listen to their most ardent fans and brands should do the same.
From a community management point of view, the last two points were of most interest. Scott talked about the synergy that exists between a group of music fans and a group of brand advocates. It is important to understand that the digital space offers a continuum from mass retailing (mildly interested fans) to “direct to consumer” (high value fans), it is important to learn how to manage this scale.
Artists listen to their most “hard core” fans as they, more often than not, represent the opinion of the wider fan base. Brands need to do the same, they must listen to their advocates to understand their market better. Scott talked about “brand calculus” which is the difference between what you think the market is saying about you, compared to what consumers are actually saying. To achieve the closest alignment between these two factors involves listening carefully to your audience and fans and then responding to your findings.
It is also important to engage your most loyal and enthusiastic fans by confiding in them. Giving them inside knowledge encourages them to act as your brand ambassador and in turn spread your message.
Do you agree with Scott’s points?
A huge thanks to the Ad:Tech team for the Breakfast Briefing. Nice work guys.