More money for big data analytics — and a sign that, as the space matures, we will see more segmentation of what kinds of big data is getting analysed. Semetric, the UK/LA-based company behind the music data tracking service Musicmetric, has today announced £3 million ($4.7 million) in new investment, which it says that it will use to further expand its music service, as well as other big data products specifically for the entertainment industry. New investor Imperial Innovations Group and existing backer Pentech Ventures both participated. Semetric has raised $7.4 million since being founded in 2008.
In the massive, global switch to digital media, the music industry has not exactly been one of the winners. A number of services came out of the gates early on giving consumers the ability to get free music, only then followed by legitimate services, many of which compete on commoditized pricing, with thin or no margins, sprouting out of the ground where the (some, but not all) illegal companies eventually get buried.
Musicmetric is a sign of how the music industry is trying to act smarter, by using all the data swimming around our cyberworld to the music industry’s advantage.
Musicmetric’s big thing is real-time data. It tracks some 600,000 artists and 10 million+ individual releases, and says that its dashboards are used by “thousands in the industry.” These include, yes, major labels like EMI and big media broadcasters like MTV, but also individual musicians, managers, smaller labels, promoters, music streaming sites like Last.fm, and so on.
Crucially, Musicmetric’s data pool is not just limited to legit sources. This is key for legit companies — these are the sources that are taking business away from them, after all. One of Musicmetric’s past projects was a web app, developed with the BBC, to let fans in the UK to find artists with the highest BitTorrent downloads by UK post codes. Above is what the download picture looks like near me.
Another feature is how it tracks social media signals like sentiment, as well as social media sources of music sharing.
“The value of aggregating BitTorrent data in such detail, alongside social media trends and sentiment, is that it allows for a far greater understanding of how and where music is being consumed,” Semetric said in a statement. “This enables marketers across media industries to evaluate more efficiently which markets are growing the fastest and which strategies are proving the most successful.”
Semetric says that the global market for media analytics is worth about $3 billion a year, and so part of this funding will be used to further develop entertainment analytics products. This could see it taking its tracking to other areas like TV and film consumption online.
The company and its investors appear to confirm this intention:
“The ability to analyse complex data in real time is becoming essential across business,” Gregory Mead, co-founder chief executive of Semetric, said in a statement. “As the entertainment sector continues its shift towards the digital sphere, understanding consumer trends, what drives revenues and being able to benchmark real time performance will become vital. This new investment will allow us to firmly establish Semetric across Europe and America.”
Marc Moens of Pentech, who sits on the board, said that Semetric’s already put itself into a strong position in music, and “We’re excited by what’s set to come and believe there is a real long term opportunity in offering this kind of analytics across the entertainment industry,” he said in a statement.
As part of the deal, Jon Edington of Imperial Innovations — a publicly-traded fund that mainly focuses on technologies that have come out of Imperial College London, Cambridge University, Oxford University and UCL — will become a non-executive director of Semetric, joining Gregory Mead, Pentech’s Marc Moens and exec chairman Jeremy Silver on the board.