Wall Street Journal

Music streaming services like Spotify generated 90% of Sweden's 2012 digital music revenue

Friday, January 18, 2013 - 12:25pm

Sweden "and its Nordic neighbors have long been seen as early adopters and innovators when it comes to tech trends," writes The Wall Street Journal today.

Today's specific tech trend: Music sales in Sweden are showing double digit growth, powered almost entirely by on-demand, subscription-based streaming services.

The Swedish Recording Industry Association says music sales were up 14% in that country last year. "Digital" music sales (that is, not CDs, vinyl, and cassettes) accounted for 60% of all Swedish music sales in 2012. And 90% of the digital music sales came from streaming.

Spotify, the world's largest streaming service, was founded by Swedes Daniel Ek and Martin Lorentzon in 2006 and first launched in Sweden in 2008.

Read more in The Wall Street Journal Tech Europe blog here and in RawStory.com here.

Political candidates spending more on web ads to better reach potential votes

Tuesday, March 27, 2012 - 11:25am

Political web ad spendingJust before the Iowa caucuses, ads for Texas governor Rick Perry could be heard on Pandora's Christmas-music stations. According to the Wall Street Journal, that's just the tip of the iceberg in terms of how presidential candidates are using the Internet to reach potential voters.

"Spending on online political advertising is expected to reach about $160 million this year, more than seven times what it was in 2008," WSJ writes. "The increased spending reflects the importance campaigns now put on Internet sites and social-media networks."

"It hasn't hurt that technology has gotten so much better since 2008," said Paul Winn of Republican ad-buying firm Smart Media Group. "If you look at smartphone adoption and Wi-Fi, they have really jumped. Time spent online is much higher."

The familar advantages of web advertising -- like the ability to specially target users -- appeal to candidates. For example, users who search for "Newt" on Google see ads from Mitt Romney attacking Newt Gingrich.

Meanwhile, Inside Radio reports that Katz360 "has formed a new strategic partnership to lasso a larger slice of the 2012 political pie."

"We already have a seat at the table... We’re already engaged with consultants, candidates and political agencies that handle the business," said Katz360 president Brian Benedik.

Benedik will discuss more about advertising and Internet radio at RAIN Summit West 2012, where he'll appear on our panel "Charting Digital Ad Dollars." Joining him will be Gordon Borrell of Borrell Associates, Steven Kriztman of Pandora, Jon Mitchell of Spotify, Alexis Van de Wyer of AdSwizz and moderator Robin Flynn of SNL Kagan.

You can find out more about RAIN Summit West 2012 here. Find the Wall Street Journal's article here and subscribe to Inside Radio's daily newsletters here.

TuneIn to offer content from WSJ Radio Network and Buckley

Friday, March 23, 2012 - 11:55am

WSJ Radio NetworkTuneIn's web radio directory will now include programs and podcasts from The Wall Street Journal Radio Network, as well as stations from Buckley Radio.

The WSJ Radio Network provides business news to more than 450 radio stations and also offers 23 podcast programs. TuneIn users will be able to listen to the WSJ podcasts, in addition to programs like "The Wall Street Journal this Morning" and "The Daily Wrap with Michael Castner."

TuneIn will also offer Buckley's flagship station NYC WOR Radio and 11 additional stations (more here).

TuneIn is an aggregator of online radio streams and other audio content, including more than 50,000 stations.


WSJ: More flights offer web access and more passengers paying for it

Friday, March 23, 2012 - 11:55am

WSJ stats on in-flight Wi-FiThough yet to reach mainstream adoption, in-car Internet radio is likely old news to industry professionals and RAIN readers. But have you listened to web radio at 30,000 feet yet? It seems in-flight Wi-Fi usage and availability is on the rise, the Wall Street Journal reports.

Currently 1,700 planes in the U.S. offer web access with about 8% of passengers using in-flight Wi-Fi. That's up from 4% in 2010 and research company In-Stat predicts it will reach 10% by the end of 2012. "People are beginning to expect you to have Wi-Fi everywhere," said In-Stat.

Virgin America says about 16% of passengers pay for in-flight Wi-Fi. And a Delta representative said, "We're seeing very, very rapid growth." Such experiences have prompted airlines to install in-flight Wi-Fi in more planes and come up with new ways to lower pricing.

Delta says the most popular website accessed during flights is (surprise) Facebook. But with WSJ pegging growth on the rising popularity of tablets, there's got to be some web radio streaming going on up in the clouds.

The Wall Street Journal has more coverage here.

Majority of young car-buyers want web connectivity, smartphone apps in their cars, reports WSJ

Wednesday, January 25, 2012 - 11:00am

In-car web radio"In the not-too-distant future, a car with a radio that receives only AM or FM will qualify as an antique." So writes the Wall Street Journal in a new column highlighting Internet radio's growing in-car appeal.

Already nearly 60% of car buyers age 19-31 think web connectivity is the most important aspect of a car's interior, according to a Deloitte LLP survey. And 72% want to use their smartphone apps in cars.

Twenty three automakers now have deals with Pandora, WSJ reports. Some manufacturers like Audi are even experimenting with connecting to web radio directly from the car dashboard -- no smartphone needed.

Car makers are also opening offices in Silicon Valley ("to get plugged in to the rapidly shifting online-services market"). Meanwhile, cellular providers "have struggled to expand their network data capacity fast enough to keep pace with demand."

You can find the Wall Street Journal's full article here.

Radio's denial of Pandora might end up costing them both when ad dollars "move on"

Thursday, December 22, 2011 - 1:25pm

Broadcast radio's squabbling over Pandora's attempts to assert itself as a major player for radio ad dollars has made it on to the pages of The Wall Street Journal. And one expert told the paper this split may end up costing both Pandora and traditional radio in the long run.

You'll recall (here) Arbitron this week issued a statement -- apparently at the behest of its broadcast radio customers -- critical of listening estimates for Internet radio services based on server log data, self-reported listener demographic info, and without a "detailed description of methodology" (like Arbitron's). Market research firm Edison Research has recently been issuing estimates of Pandora's listening with metrics identical to traditional broadcast radio studies (more here). Pandora founder Tim Westergren called Arbitron's statement part of a "concerted effort" to keep Pandora out of the radio ad market as the online radio medium grows into real competition for radio.

"The broadcast industry does not want the world to know about us, basically."

This week's Arbitron statement came as the company is trying to convince its broadcaster clients to support its upcoming Total Audience Measurement product (more here), designed to measure and consolidate on-air, online, and satellite listening.

Late yesterday came news that Clear Channel-owned online ad-sales firm Katz360 -- like Arbitron, a company the counts broadcast radio groups as its main clients -- dropped Pandora from their sales network (see today's top story). (Pandora is far-and-away the most-listened-to webcaster online, dwarfing the online audiences of broadcasters like Clear Channel, CBS Radio, and Cumulus.)

Marketers are making it clear, however, they want a more "all-in-one," cross-platform ratings system to better target their ad messages (see the second-half of this recent RAIN story). Matt Feinberg, a former radio ad-buyer, told the Journal, "There are so many media vehicles out there for consideration the harder you make it for an advertiser or agency to make a decision, the quicker they will move on."

Wall Street Journal subscribers can read their coverage here.

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