MyMusic.com closed a $1-million round of funding in May from undisclosed angels in Ottawa and Toronto, and used the funds to launch the company out of beta mode on Oct. 9.
The online platform serves as a music content aggregator, compiling news, tweets, videos, concert dates, e-commerce links and more for musical artists. But it also allows users to generate their own content.
“There’s this human nature desire for people to express themselves,” said MyMusic’s chief content officer and co-founder Stephen Bleeker. “People wear t-shirts with band names on it, and this is sort of the new digital way to do so, to leave your stamp.”
Mr. Bleeker is the co-owner of CD Warehouse and local clothing retailer iStyle Originals. In 1996, he bought the domain names for both MyMusic.com and MyMusic.ca.
The latter was used right away, as an e-commerce website that sold CDs and that still exists today. The former, however, was saved for a rainy day even after Mr. Bleeker received many significant offers from companies wanting to purchase the URL. Today, the two domain names remain different entities run by some of the same people.
MyMusic.com is run by three partners including Mr. Bleeker, Rob Lane – former CEO of Overlay.TV, a local television technology company – and David Nicholson who lives in the United Kingdom.
While in beta mode without any marketing or search engine optimization, the website attracted more than half a million page views with about 35,000 people visiting the site on a monthly basis.
The site will remain free to register for and use, with revenues coming from four different streams.
Although the site was launched without advertisements, MyMusic will eventually monetize page views through ads that it feels won’t affect the flow of the website. Partnerships with large companies including iTunes, Amazon and online concert ticket providers will provide MyMusic with revenues every time its users make a purchase through one of the partner’s sites. Third-party brands will also be called upon to sponsor artists and be featured on the website.
Finally, MyMusic will gather and analyse data from users then sell it to the music industry, marketing firms and ecommerce providers.
“Other companies are doing analytics, but it’s very much so a snapshot in time such as numbers of followers,” Mr. Bleeker said. “But this is 3D, it’s understanding the whole journey. What actions and pathways end up triggering a transaction, or maybe more importantly, what actions cause people to drop off and not finish that transaction?”
The presidents of both Universal Music and Warner Music Group are on the company’s advisory board, and will benefit from that sort of information, Mr. Bleeker said.
Industry contacts also are coming in handy for promotions such as contests – later this month, Justin Bieber (who records with Universal Music) will sign a limited edition guitar as a prize for a fan who can create the best music magazine.
That magazine can include content generated on MyMusic, from anywhere on the Internet, or content uploaded by the user such as images of ticket stubs.
When users enter in a search term, musical data is aggregated and presented in the style of Pinterest, with boxes of information listed in an infinite scroll.
Mr. Bleeker envisions that many independent artists will also be able to use the site to gain an online presence and share content with listeners.
MyMusic was founded in 2011. It currently has about 11 employees in Ottawa and in various countries overseas including the United Kingdom where it has office space in Metropolis Studios, a famous recording studio that has hosted many big names from Michael Jackson to Adele. The owner of the studio is also on MyMusic’s advisory board.