Next Big Sound, the music online analytics company that powers the Billboard Social 50 chart and more recently Spotify’s artist analytics platform, has released their "State of the Industry 2013" report. Akin to their State of Online Music report released in 2012, the 2013 report takes a look at the social web as it pertains to musicians while noting new findings and important areas of growth.
The report, entitled "2013: The Year in Rewind," quantifies many of this year’s major trends in music consumption. Most notable is the 223 billion global streams recorded throughout 2013, a 140% increase in streaming activity over the prior year. The dramatic change not only acknowledges that for the first time both physical and digital sales declined in the U.S. for the first time this year, it also reflects that Spotify listening data was added to the mix of data sources tracked by Next Big Sound this year.
The report ranks each social network tracked by Next Big Sound and which artists gained the most followers on those social networks in 2013. For the big social networks the rankings are as expected -- Justin Bieber (reigning Social 50 king for 2013), Miley Cyrus, Rihanna, Shakira and their ilk dominate across Facebook, Twitter and Instagram just as much as they were dominant on the Billboard charts throughout the year.
What stands out are the rankings by consumption across Soundcloud, VEVO and YouTube. While the VEVO rankings -- exclusive to major label signed artists under Universal and Sony -- are dominated by the same artists which populate the social networks above, the Soundcloud and YouTube rankings illustrate a cast of artists specific to the artists of their networks. On Soundcloud, where EDM and electronic music is popular, Skrillex. Major Lazer, Flume, Avicii populate top spots in the rankings. On the YouTube rankings, PSY, Boyce Avenue, Lindsey Stirling, Ylvis, and 11 year old rapper phenom Matty B hold top positions.
According to findings by Next Big Sound, 80% of the artists tracked see less than one Facebook page like per day while artists like Shakira saw an average of 50,000 Facebook page likes every day. By using benchmarks to classify artists' popularity (as measured by online following) as either undiscovered, developing, mid-sized, mainstream and mega, Next Big Sound maps the distribution of artists across the online social landscape. Remarkably, more than 90% of the artists tracked are ‘undiscovered,’ or represent the bottom tier of artists. Only 1% are mainstream or mega stars, representing the top-tier of popular artists. However, this top tier (the 1%) commands around 50% of Facebook fans and YouTube VEVO views, representing a major command of online market share.
To explore these findings and depth, head to the "2013: The Year in Rewind."