Musicians are looking for new ways to make their shows more interactive and to connect with fans. And Sonic Notify thinks it’s got just the technology to do so. With that in mind, the startup raised $4.25 million and has struck a partnership with Interscope Records, which will make its technology more widely available to musicians on that label.
Sonic Notify uses soundwaves which are inaudible to the human ear to transmit signals to mobile apps that have its technology embedded. Once those soundwaves are picked up, however, apps with the technology enabled can send push notifications and transmit other multimedia content to users. Sonic Notify isn’t the only tech company aiming let users to unlock new features and interactivity using sound — but unlike Shazam and others, users don’t actually have to explicitly open up an app or really do anything for the signal to work.
The company’s financing was led by Raptor Group, with additional participation from A-Grade Investments, DEV (Digital Entertainment Ventures), Advancit, Eniac Ventures, Cantora, AngelVision Investors, and new fund GSTech.
Sonic Notify did its initial beta test during the CMJ Music Festival in New York last year, and was the technology behind Twitter’s interactive #Feed house at SXSW this year. More recently, its tech was used at New York’s Fashion Week to sync up photos of different outfits on the event’s mobile app as models walked down the runway. It’s also partnered with Spotify and Turntable.fm to let DJs share setlists and mixes with users who attend their shows.
For obvious reasons, Sonic Notify sees musicians and promoters as a huge market, as its technology will help them to connect with fans through their mobile apps. To that end, it’s announcing a launch partnership with Interscope Records, whose artists will be free to use the technology in their apps during concerts. Sonic Notify has also teamed up with the Mobile Roadie platform, which is used by 3,000 apps which have been downloaded by more than 20 million end users. That partnership will enable developers and brands to easily add interactive features powered by Sonic Notify.
And it’s already being used by some: Over the weekend, boy band Mindless Behavior took advantage of Sonic Notify’s features during a concert at the Beacon Theatre in New York City. According to Sonic Notify CEO Jonathan Glanz, the group was planning multiple interactive notifications before, during, and after the concert, including using the technology to pick a member of the audience to come up onstage and also providing exclusive content to concert goers.
Glanz was one of the folks behind the SitOrSquat app, which was acquired by Proctor & Gamble. He also founded Densebrain, a digital agency in New York. He began work on Sonic Notify late last year, and started assembling the team after a successful test at CMJ. Sonic Notify now has a dozen employees, with its headquarters in New York City and a remote business development office in Los Angeles.