Oh, c’mon…admit it. You’ve Shazammed once or twice.
You’ve pulled out your smartphone, perhaps discreetly, and clicked on that Shazam app to find out what is that fantastic song (or movie or TV show, even ads and, now, objects) or which artist is behind that extraordinary voice or catchy tune.
Why, we know folks who’ve even been know to whip out the smartphone in the middle of spin class to catch a tune or two (not that we’ve ever done that ourselves, you understand).
If you think Shazam is just a novelty app which hasn’t become a full-fledged social network you would be wrong. You may also be missing out on some juicy jamz, mon.
Of course, there are now a bunch of apps available for smartphone users which can identify songs wafting across whatever space one happens to occupy. Android users can even do that with voice commands while driving (or any other time) through Google Now.
But Shazam, actually created last century (1999), has grown to 100 million monthly users with over 20 million “Shazams” each day. And while the name may have originated as an comic book exclamation (or by Gomer Pyle, not sure which) as a modern company it has masterfully negotiated the digital spaces into partnerships with Google, Apple, Pandora, Spotify and others to buy music through the Shazam app or stream it directly through the app.
And, of course, one can share music with friends – Shazammers or not – and just last week announced a whole new level in fan-to-artist networking by teaming up with a series of artists who will share what they are Shazamming – who they are listening to. (I mean, seriously, who wouldn’t want to know what Alicia Keys or Pitbull listens to.)
“The biggest artists in the world are also the biggest fans,” said Daniel Danker, chief product officer at Shazam. “They use Shazam every day to explore new music, and for the first time ever, their fans can share in those moments as they happen.”
My friends, that is social networking. It’s also making money and, one hopes, finding a way for artists to get paid for their work in these mixed up, jumbled days of musical digital spaces.
Money is key here (like always). According to the Global Web Index, Shazam users tend to be young and have plenty of money to spend – particularly on music.
“Over 7 in 10 users are under 35,” according to GWI. “What’s more, over a quarter come from the top income quartile and almost 3 in 4 describe themselves as being constantly connected online (putting them 30% ahead of the average internet user).
“Perhaps most significant of all are their behaviors in relation to digital content; some 35% say they paid for a music download last month, making them 80% more likely than others to have done this.”