While artists signed with major labels seem to have access to inexhaustible resources for distribution, promotion, and marketing, the opportunities available to indie artists aren’t as robust. Viberate is attempting to bridge this gap by bundling data analytics, artist websites, playlist pitching, booking pages, unlimited distribution, and more — all in one consolidated plan.
Viberate is now expanding their focus on analytics to include broader services designed to uplift musicians. The company’s just-launched ‘Viberate for Artists’ includes unlimited distribution alongside playlist pitching, festival pitching, artist websites, and an entire booking page for a single annual payment of $39.
Vasja Veber, cofounder of Viberate, recently sat down with Digital Music News to discuss the consolidated offering for up-and-coming artists. Veber pointed out that DIY distribution services generally charge $40 per year for unlimited distribution, whereas Viberate is doing more with the same price.
“We wanted to match whatever artists are already paying for distribution. With Viberate for Artists, artists can distribute to all streaming services that matter, retain 100% of ownership, make bookings, and access their data across all relevant social and streaming channels. Everything an artist needs is for $39 per year,” Veber explained. Viberate recently partnered with DMN to expand awareness of its consolidated platform.
Viberate’s artist website builder includes live performances, recorded music, and stats. Veber says the resulting website has “everything an artist needs for a promoter to say ‘I want to book this guy for my festival.’”
Viberate for Artists also allows artists to solicit booking requests directly via Viberate. Decision-makers can choose venues from a database, select preferred dates for performances, and make offers to the artist via the website. Veber explains how Viberate pulls every detail from a vast database, adding, “The whole music ecosystem is in one place. Artists, tracks, playlists, festivals, labels. Viberate is a big platform.”
Other players in the competitive music distribution and analytics services arena appear to be offering specific services — but not everything in one package. That’s potentially a market void that Viberate wants to fill.
For instance, CD Baby charges up to $50 for a single album release and retains 9% of artists’ digital distribution revenue. The platform adds a price bump for additional services such as artist website bookings and analytics.
Veber clarified that while the consolidated package allows artists access to their own analytics for free, stats for other artist profiles are limited. “But that access is definitely enough for what artists need,” Veber assured.
One problem Veber noticed is that decision-makers in the business have to platform-hop for clarity and artist insights. Viberate aims to create a credible hub of analytics where metrics update automatically, allowing informed decision-making for anyone wanting to invest in an artist.
Veber further described the issue, “When artists are pitched to promoters, they have to ensure that their latest videos are embedded, and their latest tracks are Spotify linked.”
“We streamline the process. With so many channels to update, we fold the trending stuff and put it all on an automatically-updated website. You can’t manually edit anything. The website will grab stats and highlight trending content as soon as anything pops up on any platform,” Veber explained.
According to Veber, basic stats update every 24 hours. These include previews and stats from Spotify, YouTube, Shazam, radio stations, chart appearances, all major DSPs, and top playlists. Moreover, decision-makers in the business can also analyze details about artists’ followers, even artists’ professional connections.
At its core, Viberate offers analytics to music industry professionals, labels, festivals, and artists. The company claims it has ‘more insights than anyone else.’
Veber says, “Every service we create is based on, and backed by, our data.”
Viberate prides itself on housing 850,000 verified artist profiles with complete analytics dashboards. Veber explains how other major analytics platforms boast counts of over 8 million profiles, but they come with a catch. “These platforms have up to 15 different profiles for the same artist. Anyone who works in the data space knows how important it is to have a clean data set,” Veber relays, adding, “Viberate is a more robust database. We have one profile, and all the data for that artist is in one profile.”
Moreover, artists’ stats can be compared side-by-side, including audience information, listener information, fanbase growth and engagement charts.
According to Veber, analyzing fanbase growth and fanbase engagement sheds light on the credibility of artists’ follower count. “These two metrics must be correlated to ensure followers didn’t come from click farms. If you see growth of the fanbase but no growth of engagement, this could signal a problem.”
Veber says, “Viberate is revolutionizing the music business with the power of data and offering more insights than anyone else.”
Veber also offered a tempered tone on AI. “Despite the world leaning onto AI, we are combining machine processing and human curation,” he noted.
Even though Viberate’s algorithms run the majority of data points, Veber believes AI is limited in its abilities, adding, “Sometimes, there are going to be two artists with the same name in different genres, and the computer will think they’re the same artist. You have to listen to them to distinguish that they’re different. So I don’t believe in machines completely replacing human curation. Not just yet.”
The company boasts 120 human curators who go through data every day. Veber is adamant that despite the world diving into the midst of an AI hype, machines still have a long way to go. “People think of ChatGPT and other language models like some Skynet that will take over the world. Although the tech is fascinating, it can only summarize our existing knowledge.”
Veber admitted that AI turned out to be an irreplaceable tool for generating artists’ bios, but the technology’s capabilities were disappointing when it came to analytics. “We tried to train AI to draw conclusions from our statistical features, but the tech failed spectacularly. Sarah Conner can still chill for a bit,” he added.
With offices in Beverly Hills, London, and Ljubljana (Slovenia), Veber reveals that the US generates more than half of the traffic. “Everything else is divided between Europe, the UK, and some Asian countries.”
Speaking about the future of Viberate, Veber reveals that the company will soon allow fan-funded advances to artists. “Those are going to be based on NFTs. So we’ll have fans funding advances to certain artists.”