This week we welcome two newcomers to the Trendsetters Chart! Bazzi and Derez De’Shon both make their Trendsetters debut after seeing some major spikes in their social media engagement. Keep your eyes peeled for these two promising artists!

Bazzi Jan 29

Vine Star Bazzi is Back!

Detroit-native Andrew Bazzi has been quietly making a name for himself after his successful Vine career and he premieres at #7 on the Trendsetters chart this week. The R&B singer-songwriter grew a loyal following after posting covers of popular songs on Vine and has since been working hard releasing new original songs after signing with Warner Music. His third single “Mine” follows the successes of “Alone” and “Beautiful” and has helped him see a 365% increase in artist station adds month on month along with a 300% increase in Instagram followers.

Derez De'Shon Jan 29

Atlanta’s Derez De’Shon Debuts at #8!

Derez De’Shon already has the seal of approval from Cash Money CEO Birdman. The Rich Gang rapper signed with Cash Money Records and his single “Hardaway” has people taking notice, including Birdman himself who released “Heart Away,” a remix of the song featuring Toni Braxton, earlier this month. Derez De’Shon was also featured on Billboard’s Bubbling Under Hot 100 list this week and saw a 125% increase in Instagram followers and a 25% increase in artist station adds.

An Interview with Emily Blake, Data Journalist for Next Big Sound

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You would be hard-pressed to find an artist that Emily Blake hasn’t heard of yet. Emily is a data journalist for Next Big Sound, and each week she curates three exciting charts – Pandora Predictions, Pandora Trendsetters, and Pandora Top Spins. Emily is at the forefront of what’s up-and-coming in the music industry, so we asked her to share her insights on discovering trends, best practices for artists using data, and her favorite features of Next Big Sound!

AMP: What are some trends/themes that you notice in artists appearing on NBS Trendsetters/Pandora Predictions?

EB: First and foremost, Hip hop dominates the Trendsetters Chart. On any given week, I would not be surprised if over half of the artists on Trendsetters are rappers. And within that, a lot of these newer kids are going by Lil something or Young/Yung something. The Lil’s are back!

Predictions: Genre-wise, I’ve been seeing a lot of dancehall artists, Grime acts, and K-pop. All these genres, of course, have their roots overseas, but all of them seem to making serious impacts in the States.

On Top Spins: Collaborations are everywhere. Last week, for example, more than a third of the songs on the Top Spins charts were collaborations, which is a huge increase from say, five or 10 years ago. And these collaborations are happening across genres, with pop singers recruiting rappers to be featured on their song. American singers linking up with Latin acts, and more traditional artists like Coldplay teaming up with super streaming-friendly acts like The Chainsmokers.

AMP: What trends in the music industry are you expecting to see in 2018? (ex. 2017 was a big year for the Latin-pop revival)

EB: I expect to see more and more collaborations on the charts. And I expect these collaborations to get more and more “weird” with time. For example, Bebe Rexha and Florida Georgia Line come from wildly different musical worlds, but have a song in the top 10 on the Top Spins Chart. I think more and more unlikely collaborations like this will keep happening. And I wouldn’t be surprised if in a few years, this cross-pollination – country artists working with rappers and EDM acts – starts to change the genres themselves.

AMP: When artists make it onto Trendsetters/Predictions, how can they capitalize on their chart position to generate the most buzz for their career?

EB: I really think Pandora’s Artist Audio Messages and Featured Tracks tools are really great ways to give an artist an extra boost. What better way to connect with your audience than to actually talk to them? Charting on Trendsetters is a good indication that the iron’s hot – so strike away.

AMP: Some artists can feel intimidated when they start to work with data. What advice would you give artists as they start to incorporate data into making career decisions?

EB: I think it’d be more intimidating to make career decisions without data than with it! Artists should always follow their intuition, but data is the best way to validate it. Through Next Big Sound, every artist on Pandora gets access to their spins count, audience demography and a number of the tools that make sense of how their songs are listened to on the platform. By knowing where their audience is, and which song they are reacting to the most, artists can use these signals to push the right content, to the right audience. For artists who have never worked with data before, they shouldn’t be intimidated in using Next Big Sound. NBS is for everyone, from data novice to experts. For the novices, we have notification emails that will let you know when something exciting is happening – no math or analysis needed! And once you get more comfortable with using data, we have an array of tools that allow you to do some deeper analysis.

AMP: What common themes have you seen among artists who have moved through the charts, from Predictions to Top Spins, as they developed?

EB: Most of the time when an artist is moving from Predictions to Trendsetters to Top Spins, they are also moving up and up in artist stages. Next Big Sound divides artists among five stages based on social and streaming reach: Undiscovered, Promising, Established, Mainstream, and Epic. How does this look in real life? A good visual is the closer the artist gets to Epic, the bigger the font they get in a festival lineup. See here.

AMP: In your opinion, what is the most unique feature available for artists on NBS?

EB: I think our artist notification emails are awesome and something you can’t really find anywhere else. One email alerts you of any notable streaming and social spikes for you or any of the artists you follow on NBS, along with context as to why these spikes may be happening. It’s a great way for artist who are too busy or too unfamiliar with data to get meaningful insights into what’s working for them.

Look out for these future Trendsetters! Each week we’ll be sharing a few highlights from the Pandora Trendsetters Chart. Using data obtained from Next Big Sound, this chart shows the top 20 artists listeners have been using to create the highest number of stations from over the past week, and reflects which up-and-coming artists are currently trending on the platform. Be sure to check back each week for the latest release of our Pandora Trendsetters!

Anderson East Jan 22

Anderson East is Ready for His Encore!

Anderson East makes his debut on the Trendsetters chart at #13 after seeing over 3,400 artist station adds in this past week. The Nashville-based singer-songwriter has a sound that is hard to define, spanning a spectrum of genres ranging from country to blues to Southern Rock, but it’s a winning combination that has garnered him major buzz and fans both in and out of the industry. Following the success of his major-record label debut album Delilah, Anderson East is back with his recently released album Encore, which features collaborations with Ed Sheeran, Chris Stapleton, and Ryan Adams. We hope he’s ready for many more encores!

LilSkies Jan 22

The Sky’s the Limit for Lil Skies!

After steadily climbing his way up the Trendsetters chart for the past five weeks, Lil Skies has secured his highest ranked position yet coming in at #2 this week. This follows his Billboard Hot 100 debut with his viral hits “Red Roses” and “Nowadays.” The 19-year-old rapper from Pennsylvania caught the attention of many last year when he released the Cole Bennett directed music video for his song “Red Roses,” which has since racked up over 30 million views on YouTube. 2018 is shaping up to be an even bigger year for the rookie rapper as he is fresh off Lil Uzi Vert’s “Very Uzi Christmas” tour and has already teased a collaboration with Gucci Mane. If you haven’t already heard of Lil Skies, you will soon.

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Today, Pandora is happy to announce our newest innovation: the ability for our ad-supported listeners to unlock Pandora Premium by watching a 15-second video ad. As Premium Access rolls out, all Pandora listeners will be able to access our full catalog, on-demand, anytime they want.

This is a huge moment for artists, too. For the first time, artists can use Artist Audio Messages and social media to point their fans to a specific track on Pandora, and fans will not only be able to listen to that track, but also search and play songs, albums, and playlists during their unlocked session of Pandora Premium. 

To begin promoting your music:

  1. Log into Pandora.com on your desktop
  2. Search for your artist name and click into your Artist Page
  3. In the ‘Discography’ section of your Artist Page, click into the release you would like to promote
  4. On the release page, click on the title of the track you’d like to drive traffic to
  5. On the track page, click on the ‘Share’ icon in the header
    • Select ‘Copy Link’
  6. Log into AMP and create an Artist Audio Message with the copied share link to your track as the Call To Action
    • Use the button label ‘Listen Now’

NOTE: If you are using AMPcast, follow similar steps to find the share link on the mobile Pandora app. You can also follow steps 1-5 to create a social post to promote your track. 

Using this feature is a phenomenal way to promote new music, boost spins on tracks you wish to Feature, and generate more lucrative on-demand plays for your music. We’re so excited to share this feature with you, and look forward to seeing how you use it.

As always, if you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to reach out via AMP-Support@pandora.com or the Intercom chat feature in AMP.

PS – Now is a great time to do one last promotional push on your holiday music – finish the year strong!

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First of all – thank you so much to everyone who joined our second AMP Webinar, AMPcamp: Holiday Edition!

During the webinar, we discussed how you can use the AMP marketing tools to accomplish all your Holiday goals – from promoting Holiday catalog new and old, to selling merch, to giving back to your favorite charities. We also heard from special guest Kevin Breuner, VP of Marketing at CD Baby, who told us about his own experiences using AMP to promote Holiday music.

The recording of the webinar and the deck we presented can be found here. Recordings and materials from all our webinars can be found here

As always, please don’t hesitate to reach out to us via AMP-Support@pandora.com or the Intercom chat feature in AMP if you have any questions.

Thanks and Happy Holidays,

The Pandora AMP Team

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Over the summer, we announced huge updates to our targeting science for Artist Audio Messages and Featured Tracks. Now, a few months later, we’re thrilled with how those updates have improved the performance of our tools – so much so that we’ve made one more adjustment.

Effective immediately, we’re showing you more data on Featured Tracks Campaign Analytics. As always, we’re displaying Total Unique Listeners, Total Spins, and Featured Spins, but now we’re showing you both the Featured Thumb Up Ratio and the Lifetime Thumb Up Ratio.

As you probably know, a Featured Track will be de-Featured if the Thumb Up Ratio dips below 20% – this used to refer only to the Lifetime Thumb Up Ratio, which is the number we previously surfaced in Campaign Analytics. With this new update, we’ll independently look at the Lifetime Thumb Up Ratio and the Featured Thumb Up Ratio (the ratio for ONLY Featured Spins), and the higher of these two numbers must dip below 20% in order for the track to be de-featured. This change means fewer tracks will be prematurely de-Featured due to a low Thumb Up Ratio.

And just a reminder – all master rights holders are eligible to access Featured Tracks. If you own your masters, deliver your music to Pandora via one of our partner aggregators (i.e. Tunecore, CD Baby, or Distrokid), and you do not currently have access to Featured Tracks, please let us know, and we’ll add the tool to your account.

If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to reach out via AMP-Support@pandora.com or the Intercom chat feature in AMP.

 

Happy Featuring!

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It’s time to hit the road again!

The AMP team is heading down to Raleigh next week for the IBMA World of Bluegrass Conference & Festival. Join us at the Raleigh Convention Center on Wednesday, September 27 from 10:00 – 10:50am for our workshop, “Being Your Own Marketing Army with Pandora AMP.”

Come through to explore the free, self-serve marketing and analytics tools on AMP and Next Big Sound, where you can see your Pandora radio and streaming data alongside data from over 30 other sources tracked by NBS. Learn how you can support your catalog and new releases, promote upcoming tour dates, and drive fan engagement and get the latest on advancements in Pandora’s Promotional targeting science.

The team will be on the ground at the conference throughout the day on the 27th. Reach out via the help page or chat tool if you’d like to speak with us in person (meetings are limited and dependent on availability).

See you soon, World of Bluegrass!