Mike McGuire

A member of the Gartner Blog Network

Mike McGuire
Research VP
11 years at Gartner
21 years IT industry

Mike McGuire guides digital marketers on best practices for developing strategies. He specializes in how context, community, location and time — combined with a consumer’s purchase history and purchase intent — are changing the relationship between consumers and brands …Read Full Bio

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Soundtrckr Tries to Marry Location, Music: Marriage Made in Heaven or Shotgun Wedding?

by Mike McGuire  |  February 19, 2010  |  1 Comment

Just when you thought there weren’t any more ways one could use “social” as a modifier for music, along comes Soundtrckr (www.soundtrckr.com). What Soundtrackr has done is marry streaming music, shared playlists and geo-tagging. The result: what the company calls a “geosocial music service.”

What users can do is seed a “station” based on a song or artist on their device. Soundtrckr then the system starts driving related songs from Soundtrckr’s seven-million-track catalog (licensed from the labels so they’re not paying a webcasting royalty), based on the usual elements: genre, artist, band, album etc., etc.  The added twist is that the playlists can be tagged to a location and the iPhone app can help users find fellow Soundtrckr’s and their playlists by location.

I started with a live track from a Los Lobos concert in 2005 in my hometown. What followed were some interesting, and by my ear and preferences, appropriate matches. (Like so many recommendation systems, some of the songs linked to the Los Lobos seed were just so obviously based on the highest-level, and therefore loosest relationship between artists. For example, there isn’t really a direct musical relationship between Los Lobos and Santana. We can chat offline about this if anybody would like to discuss.

Founder and CEO Daniele Calabrese said recently that the company looks to drive revenue from advertising, affiliate fees from driving sales to stores and services.

It all sounds interesting. The dynamic Calabrese’s team is trying to tap into – music’s power as social currency – has potential as a revenue driver. What remains to be seen is whether it develops into a standalone business or if it becomes an ingredient in a larger service offering from a content store or service, perhaps even a carrier.

Definitely one to watch in the intersection of social, mobile and music.

1 Comment »

Category: media business models Mobile music Online Music Search/Discovery/Recommendation Systems     Tags:

1 response so far ↓

  • 1 Brian Prows   May 4, 2010 at 11:17 am

    Interesting comments, Mike.

    Other issues are on the table as location-based mobile services evolve. How engaged do users want to be with others? How much of our time is available to connect?

    Discovering friend’s locations through geotagging was first. Now social media services are searching for new ways to connect mobile people.

    Another issue is privacy. Are our lives becoming open books to “friends” and others who want to “follow us”?

    A podcast interview with Daniele appears on MobileBeyond later today (5/4/10). I’ll be asking some of the hard questions.

    Brian Prows
    MobileBeyond