February has been the month for innovation conferences on music and publishing. Last week was O’Reilly’s Tools of Change Conference (in New York with amazing food). Yesterday was Brian Zisk’s SF Music Tech Conference, and today starts Ned Sherman’s Digital Media Wire Music conference in New York.
Recurring themes have been abundant start-ups facing creators to help them into continuing to shift distribution platforms, as well as various efforts in creating thoughtful fan data tools. Innovation on both coasts and with both industries is in the face of long-standing industry leaders, all embracing digital in workflow, marketing, distribution, and social media . . . to various degrees. We’ve been having a good time chatting with companies as they have been launching over the past year or so. One company eagerly approached us yesterday at SF Music Tech, eager to tell us that the company that they dreamed of last October is launching in April.
Revenue? Business models? The issue we find the most interesting is business development. How do you cost-effectively sell into these spaces, especially in working with traditional distribution and rights holders? We keep running into one frantically running biz dev person at many of these companies.
We’re seeing the issue with more startling contrast in the educational media and technology space, with biz dev people trying to sell one small product to many universities, and amazed they can’t get scale.