“It is an important and dynamic time for music in China,” said Cussion Pang, CEO of TME. “Technology advances are enabling more personalized and social music experiences. The market is developing quickly and we are on the cusp of a dramatic transformation. The opportunities for artists and publishers have never been greater.”
TME partnered with Music Matters to develop and enhance the “China Music Forum,” a half-day event, curating interviews, presentations and panels among industry leaders. In addition to Pang’s keynote, the forum featured a discussion with Andy Ng, Group Vice President, TME, on the future for music publishing in China.
China is projected to be the major market of worldwide streaming music revenues. To meet this opportunity, TME is helping the world’s leading artists and publishers to bring compelling new experiences to music lovers across its services. It is also enabling new business models, such as tiered subscription systems and digital album concepts that transform the way music is promoted, distributed and sold.
TME’s music services comprise a range of offerings under five major brands aimed at different sectors of China’s large and fast evolving music market. QQ Music is a fan-oriented music platform that appeals to young people. Kugou is a one-stop pan-entertainment flagship for the mass market, and Kuwo focuses on specific music genres and deep personalization.
At the same time, TME is broadening its offerings beyond streaming recorded to address all the ways consumers in China enjoy music. WeSing, for example, is a singing-centric social music platform, while Kugou Live is devoted to live streaming of unique artist performances.
Pang identified four key trends driving the development of music in China:
- Content diversification: user preferences have become a more long-tail phenomenon, while variety shows have emerged as an important source of content
- Social interactions: which create new ways to consume music, and new ways for artists and fans to interact, enjoy live broadcasts and share experiences among friends
- O2O (Online to Offline): using online platforms to enhance the offline experience, including concerts, ticket sales and ticket sales
- Technology driven innovation: reinventing the music experience by making it accessible across multiple use cases and environments, as well as improving it with video, audio and virtual reality (VR) enhancements
“In China, unlike other markets, music streaming emerged at the same time as social networking and mainstream ecommerce, which means that consumers expect convenience and they expect integration. Anyone selling music, or using music to market their products in China should explore the possibilities of this deeply integrated landscape,” said Pang.
TME is now one of the world’s largest platforms and social networks for music (offering more 17 million songs to 700 million of monthly active users in China) and a key part of a vibrant music ecosystem based on strong protection for intellectual property.
“More than 200 record labels, including Universal Music Group, Sony Music, Warner Music and Huayi Brothers and YG Entertainment have joined us to set a new standard for the way music is created, distributed and enjoyed,” said Pang. “Many subscribers now are paying for music on TME’s platform, providing a strong foundation for the industry’s development and growth.”