In an era where streaming services have unprecedented power to steer an artist to success, SoundCloud is planting its flag deeper as a "creator forward" platform. Today, it announces an expansion of its SoundCloud Premier program, a direct monetization platform aimed at making it easier for fans to support artists and empower its musician users.
"The diversity of SoundCloud is one of the great strengths of the platform. We see content from all genres, across gender, across geography. A big part of our mission is to be as inclusive and as open as possible, so likewise for SoundCloud Premier," said SoundCloud CEO Kerry Trainor. "In fact, we think one of the most exciting things about this expansion step is that we now have the opportunity to open it up even further and allow the artists to really select which tools to utilize."
After initially testing SoundCloud Premier with a select pool of artists, the service will now be more broadly available. To start, artists will need to have at least 5,000 plays in the past month, and the program will be limited to countries where both advertising and SoundCloud's subscription branch, SoundCloud Pro, are available. The intention, per Trainor, is to scale the Premier service so it will be available to the site's full musical community, so long as artists can prove that they own the full rights to the work they're monetizing, and to take advantage of the massive user base it has built up since launching in 2008.