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An Indie Artist Pipeline to Internet Radio
Wednesday, June 12, 2013
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Everybody Doesn't Get a Trophy

The experience of an "ah-ha" moment enlightens me as it does you. I had one of them this morning while reading a comment to an AG article.

Deriding me for "...walking around criticizing...", the person's point was that I should provide solutions for "...small market internet radio stations. They are in desperate of support!"

I agree. Almost.


No. I don't!
"Internet radio has made its mark. Clear leaders and followers are defined. Evolution will introduce new players, but we'll not see much movement in names or rankings. If so, it will be glacial-like."

It would be great if all answers could be found online. Want a business? Search "success," and find out how to build a successful online radio station. It's that simple.

Many people have yet to learn that answers to creating a winner are not handed to anyone. Answers don't exist. Suggestions on what might work do.

As the person (above) wanted me to, providing "solutions" to internet radio owners is not possible; the sheer number of online stations is one obstacle. Here's the other: A majority of internet radio stations are here today and gone tomorrow. (It's not a literal "gone." They exist only to a handful of people. Possibly numbering, annually, in the low single-digit-hundreds. And that's O.K.) This is the Milky Way of internet radio's universe.

There are only a handful of internet radio success stories - a term that depends on your definition. Make money or build reputation. Which is it that matters most to you?

Few, very few online radio stations do either. At this early stage that's O.K. too.

The radio industry's online fight today includes broadcasters and pureplays - not against each other, and not about money. Today the objective is developing backend mechanics for radio stations online. The battle is in teaching the industry how to use them before it goes mainstream, which is still a few years away.

Having followed internet radio since its inception, here's my educated opinion: Over 98% of internet radio operators are enthusiastic amateurs. Nearly all have a serious commitment to listeners, and I bow in respect to their efforts. Just note, there should be no disappointment when under 10 people concurrently listen. It's the reality of radio online.

Where once a limited number of stations serving a small geographical area guaranteed working in radio was "cool," everybody doesn't get a trophy anymore.

You have maybe 15 top tiered players. Not all are "radio stations," but all chase the same audience. Pandora - which purchased its first broadcast station yesterday - Spotify, Rdio, Lastfm, Jango, and now iTunes Radio. We all know the names. But how many second tier stations or networks can you name? AccuRadio, Radio Paradise. Digitally Imported. Pirate Radio of the Treasure Coast. No Shoes Radio? Yes... go on? There are only a few more with audiences of note, or programming that's different.

And we have even fewer companies servicing the internet radio industry. As Clear Channel is to broadcast, Triton Digital is on top online. Continued Media Rating Council (MRC) accreditation helps give Triton an earned domination in this space.

Having the vision to bundle services to major groups, Triton is joined by Tunein, Abacast, Liquid Compass, Live 365, Shoutcast, and Radio Loyalty. There are 2nd tiered companies but, unlike the station and music service categories, not enough to matter.

Internet radio has made its mark. Clear leaders and followers are defined. Evolution will introduce new players, but we'll not see much movement in names or rankings. If so, it will be glacial-like.

I'll leave with this "ah-ha": Relative to the radio industry, the enthusiastic amateur station is tomorrow's mainstream audio experience. These station owners do it for fun, and that is the attraction.

Here's hoping this does not dampen resolve to create the best radio station with what there is to work with. Most important, have fun. The latter is really at the heart of why a vast majority try to build an internet radio station. It has to be because it's now common knowledge that not everybody gets a trophy.

Today's indie artist introduction to internet radio is...
Von shakes
sample song
The Routine

Download Song


We listen for songs that evoke emotion; fast, slow, female, male, group, it doesn't matter. When an artist has the power to please, they should be given a chance to be heard.

Give Von shakes's "The Routine" a listen.

Add it to your station playlist, free! Such is the new world of music distribution.

It's time internet radio programmers take a chance and reach into a huge pile of talent.
It is there that new hit songs will increasingly be found.

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