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HITTING THE RIGHT NOTE

BY BY BERYL MENEZES & CHRISTOPHER CHAVES (With inputs from RAHUL KAMAT)

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Where words fail, music speaks.” These words immortalised by Danish author Hans Christian Andersen pay tribute to the power of music that unites people across the world and has come to be an integral part of advertising over time too.

Currently, World Cup anthems by a plethora of brands including Uber, Ola, Oppo, American Tourister, TikTok, Syska, Bingo and more have become the order of the day, as have branded music videos using artistes who are hot on the music scene, like the recent Axe hip-hop video featuring Ayushmann Khurrana, Naezy, Sunil Chhetri, Dharmesh Yelande and Shashank Arora.
Indeed, the role of music in ad films has moved away from being used solely by alcohol brands which cannot advertise in mainstream media, to being a central part of every brand film today. In fact, a music promo before a film launch has become par for the course now.

The underlying factor giving a boost to the Indian music ecosystem is Digital, even as more Indians consume content online through mobiles or OTT platforms on the go, or on multiple screens. This presents a vital opportunity for advertisers to go beyond jingles to building consumer engagement using music as a marketing tool on various music platforms.

Audio and video streaming making waves: So what is driving the flourishing growth of music streaming platforms in India? Faster and cheaper 4G data bandwidth, especially on the back of Jio’s disruption, a proliferation of smartphones, more people consuming content on the go, especially during commute time, as well as the plethora of differentiated content available today across genres and artistes, which was not the case until a few years ago. Music streaming apps and OTT platforms, as well as voice-enabled services like Alexa, Siri and Google Now Assistant, are driving the growth of digital music consumption in India.

According to the International Federation of the Phonographic Industry (IFPI), 96% of smartphone users in India are using their devices to listen to music, the highest rate in the world. Again, according to IMI’s Digital Music Study 2018 report, streaming revenue accounted for 66.8% of the overall market and digital sales contributed to 78.5% of all sales revenues in India. Income from subscription audio streams tripled to Rs 220 crore while video stream revenues contributed Rs 170 crore or 29.8% of total streaming.
Gaana gave users an opportunity to browse and listen to trending music from more than 50 countries, by tapping on the ‘Music Day’ option on the home screen and selecting the country within the interactive map to enjoy popular native music from the region. Rich media cards featuring trivia about the origin of indigenous music in each of these places, as well as popular genres and artistes, also popped up as part of the selection

Vh1 India and MTV Beats organised a 24-hour Facebook Live music festival #LongLiveMusic, featuring over 40 top artistes across genres performing live on Facebook

BookASmile, the charity initiative of BookMyShow organized a drum circle in partnership with NGOs BOSCO and Dream A Dream, wherein 100-plus underprivileged children in Bengaluru got a chance to play their favourite tunes

Tinder unveiled India’s top 10 Spotify anthems on user profiles, allowing all its Indian user profiles linked to Spotify accounts to play previews of potential matches’ top songs via Spotify, view artistes in common and pick a personality-defining Spotify anthem for one’s profile

KFC India unveiled an Instagram-led digital innovation conceptualised by digital agency Blink Digital in which KFC’s iconic red and white stripes were turned into piano keys on Instagram, giving viewers a chance to record their signature tunes simply by pressing and holding all notes, each of which had a word synonymous with KFC attached to it

9X Media created a unique Smashup of Indian and global music, with the songs aired across all its five music television channels and promoted across its 24 million-plus digital communities

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