1 VOICE WILL BECOME THE NEW WAY TO HIT PLAY AT HOME
Amazon just announced today that their number one selling product this holiday season were “millions” of the Echo Dot; a hands-free, voice-controlled device that uses far-field voice recognition, has a small built-in speaker, and can also connect to your speakers over Bluetooth or used with the included audio cable. What does this mean? Streaming will continue to dominate the way we listen to music and we will start to use our voice, even more, to get the tracks we want to hear in our homes played faster than ever.
2 CRYPTO CURRENCY WILL BECOME AN ACCEPTED FORM OF PAYMENT IN THE MUSIC INDUSTRY
With the rise of Bitcoin, Etherium, and Litecoin at the end of 2017, companies will start to accept cryptocurrency as a form of payment for festival tickets, merchandise sales and more. I believe if Amazon raises their hand and decides to start accepting Bitcoin in 2018, then everyone else will soon follow suit.
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3 ARTISTS WILL IMPLEMENT CREATIVE WAYS TO GET CLOSER TO THEIR MOST LOYAL FANS & MAKE MORE MONEY
Last month, Gramatik jump on the cryptocurrency bandwagon with the release of his own coin GRMTK. This allows his fans to share his success by owning the rights and royalties of his music. This also means they will own anything he creates and distributes on his upcoming channel.
Gareth Emery has plans to launch his own blockchain streaming service in 2018. He’s expected to give 80% of earnings to artists. I believe more artists will see the value in blockchain and cryptocurrency to use it to their advantage.
4 A SURGE OF ARTISTS WILL BECOME ANTI-RECORD LABELS
Labels take a cut of artists profits and claim ownership over their music to make money. I believe in 2018, even more artists will finally understand the importance of complete control and ownership of their music and creativity. They will document more of their journey with Vlogs and use already established fan bases (like YouTube stars) to get their music into the eyes and ears of new listeners. This method will empower independent artists to go at it alone without a record label.
5 STORYTELLING WILL BECOME A REQUIREMENT FOR BRAND BUILDING & FAN ENGAGEMENT
Artists will start to utilize social media even further to expand their brand to encompass who they are even more as a person outside of their music. We’ve already seen this new trend with the likes of cooking with Marshmello, comedy in ‘What Would Diplo Do?’ with Dillon Francis and Kung Fu With Laidback Luke.