“Labels have come back to us and
said we’ve really sparked the first wave of sales.”
——Dave Goldberg


Yahoo! Music Division Scores with Plentiful
Audio, Video Offerings
You say Internet music can’t help your bottom line? Don’t tell that to LAUNCH, Your Yahoo! Music Experience.

The folks behind the online music destination—which hooked up with Web powerhouse Yahoo! last year—believe that their offerings not only serve as an effective way of building audience awareness but actually drive sales as well.

The site has managed to spike users sharply of late, thanks to Yahoo’s reach and its own programming savvy. Nielsen Netratings dubbed LAUNCH the #1 music site and #1 in time spent per session for the month of August. LAUNCH claims to have provided 41 million video streams that month and believes Nielsen’s estimate of a 6 million-strong LAUNCH user base is conservative. Most of those users are streaming with a broadband connection—and are thus the most voracious consumers of online content.

LAUNCH’s world premieres of music videos at first invite comparison to AOL Music, but GM Dave Goldberg and Head of Label Relations Jay Frank say they offer much more. “They’ll premiere it, it’ll get people for a day or a week and then it goes away,” Goldberg explains. “We can deliver those numbers at first, but we continue promoting the video for the life of the track. Our exclusive Disturbed premiere in early August was streamed a million times in 48 hours and 2.5 million to date.”

But video’s only part of the picture. The LAUNCHcast player and other audio offerings, Frank points out, help generate several hundred thousand impressions per song per week. LAUNCH utilizes a combination of “pull” (such as exclusive content, including interviews and performances) and “push” (like its e-mail newsletter and continuous audio and video play) to lure users. Upcoming video and audio premieres include music from artists as diverse as Creed, Red Hot Chili Peppers and Faith Hill.

“Labels have come back to us and said we’ve really sparked the first wave of sales,” Goldberg insists.

But don’t just take Dave’s word for it. Check the testimony of Wind-up VP New Media John Hammond. “LAUNCH provides a direct channel to the most active music buyer, and they’ve played a key role in our success with Seether to date,” Hammond gushes. “The band’s debut album, Disclaimer, came out strong at retail and has sold consistently well over the past four weeks, even in markets where it’s not yet on the radio. The exposure Seether has received as LAUNCH’s Emerging Artist for September has been crucial in ‘launching’ this great new band.”

LAUNCH has also developed established-artist retail programs with Target and Best Buy, with online coupons and other incentives driving traffic to featured titles.

What’s more, while radio enforces serious time lags for research, LAUNCH touts instantaneous user feedback. “Someday we’ll be better for research than callout is,” adds Goldberg. “Why not deal with us first? We can get 10,000 people to tell us instantly what tracks they like best, and we’ll know their listening history. We know who they are. We know where they live.”

They know where we live too, which is why you can find LAUNCHcast info and LAUNCH top video plays by hitting the “media” tab right here on hitsdailydouble.com, your “oh, crap” music experience.