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Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) in the music industry
February 4, 2020

Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) in the music industry

Yes, you’ve heard a lot about Software as a Service (SaaS). It might even be one of those terms that everyone throws at you without even being so sure of what it means. Because it is the core element of Reprtoir, we thought we’d clear the air and talk about how SaaS changed the music industry.

SaaS is everywhere

SaaS, or Software as a Service, literally means that you can dispose of a software, as a service. This technology allows users to access a platform to be able to collaborate. This industry has been rising during the last decade. Gartner is predicting extremely high numbers for the years to come, and more than $80 billion of revenue for SaaS technology.

Having access to softwares online means easily getting any solutions to help teams collaborate. With this kind of platform, your team is never far from you and always reachable. But it also means you get to try the solution without any kind of upfront payment in most cases. You usually have a trial offer, to make up your mind, and it can be all you need before involving your team on the long term. On our end, at Reprtoir, we opted for a free use for catalogs under 100 songs uploaded on our SaaS solution.

More than the practical aspect of software, and I know I am preaching to the converters here, in publishing in the music industry, a lot of variables have to be taken in account. And with them, a lot of actors. Collaborating in the music industry is a structural need; even if all data is held by majors, labels, streaming services and others, every actor is becoming a digital actor. Meaning we need to communicate better to ease the processes. Managing catalogs has to become an easy and optimized task for music producers and publishers.

All in all, everything being online might raise some issues about data protection. We don’t blame you, if you have some sensitive informations and your full catalog online, you need to be ensured security is at its top-level. To overcome the problem, Reprtoir decided to host the platform on Amazon Web Services, to insure a full data privacy. Everything is made for your business to run as smoothly as possible.

But if SaaS is usually thought of in BtoB contexts, let’s not forget that it actually managed to shake the whole music industry by changing users habits.

Spotify on a desktop computer

How SaaS changed the music industry

I’ll give you that: we rarely think of SaaS for consumers when the term is being thrown. But Spotify had actually a lot to do with the way we listen to music today, by creating the possibility to legally listen to music for free online. We won’t go through the music streaming evolution here, we already talked about this in a previous article: The State of Music Streaming: a back-catalog label’s point of view.

From the moment we started talking about music as a service, methods changed for music industry professionals. Of course it raised well-known questions such as copyrights and adaptation to digital distribution, making digital tools indispensable for music publishers and producers to be able to manage their catalogs and royalty splits. But it also opened up a new way to look at music distribution and new opportunities.

The problem is: now that releases and publishing all happen online, with more and more contributors, following up is difficult for anyone. That’s a lot of data to keep track of. That’s why we decided to make Reprtoir a SaaS available and specialized for the music industry. Because following on a chain of rights, royalty splits and production / publishing contracts on spreadsheets can’t be a solution anymore. The music industry needs a tool to manage this huge load of data.

This is why we can’t overlook Tech implication within the music industry, especially when it comes to managing and distributing tracks.

Google Play on a mobile phone

Music Tech is here for a long time

Emerging technologies have everything to do with the music industry. We strongly believe that there needs to be a real dialog. For our topic at hand today, SaaS is inevitable, and it can make you gain some precious time managing (meta)data. For now, you can for example track your song on radio, or synchronize easily… And you can optimize your catalog and contracts with Reprtoir.

We need these new tools to keep up with the evolution of the music industry. All changes are getting here so fast, we need to optimize our time and make processes easier to focus on the core actions of our jobs. And to do so, we need easier access to data between actors.

Because streaming is of course not the endgame, professionals will need to be equipped. Today, we can see trends towards high resolution formats, snackable content, or even the use of samples in electronic music or Hip Hop (music styles that are getting more and more attention). Music producers and publishers need to be alert and have the best tools to stay ahead of the curve. The music industry definitely needs trustworthy business applications to rely on. And we are working hard to provide this magic tool that will make life a bit easier.

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