Given the love of Asians for music, it would be hara-kiri for any music platform to ignore the region. To strengthen its reach in the market, and increase its user-base, web-based music streaming service, Deezer, is ramping up its activities in Southeast Asia. As it looks to continuously add more music from the market, it is doing activations locally and partnering with local mobile players.
The evolving digital infrastructure and mobile uptake in Asia offer a huge “exciting growth potential” for Deezer and make the region an “important market” for the online music platform. Dona Inthaxoum, Head of Label Relations, Asia and Oceania, Deezer, feels that Asians are big music fans. “The number of music festivals in this region has multiplied four times over in the past two years, which is a clear indication of how passionate Asians are of music, and we’re here to offer Asians all the music that they can consume,” Inthaxoum says.
Tie-ups with local mobile service providers – DiGi in Malaysia and dtac in Thailand – is just one example how Deezer is tapping into the local market. DiGi and dtac users can subscribe to Deezer’s music streaming service and choose from over 25 million tracks. DiGi also offers subscribers to make pop tracks from Deezer’s catalogue as their dial tone.
Besides, regular paid subscribers, local tie-ups offer Deezer an opportunity to explore more avenues to monetize its service. Inthaxoum says, “Right now, there are 4 million (of the 10 million monthly active users) paying subscribers, so revenue is mainly contributed through them. We also generate revenue through advertisements that are played to users that are on the discovery (free) service.”
Partnerships, according to the Head of Label Relations, are part Deezer’s strategic approach to grow the service’s subscriber base. “Deezer’s partnerships are designed to sustain engagement with consumers, ultimately adding value to their everyday lives and positioning Deezer as the can’t-live-without music application within every smartphone,” she says.
One such example, she gives is of Deezer’s partnership with Johnnie Wallker Singapore last month. The partnership involved the creation of a customised radio station, designed to allow users “to step inside and experience the thrill of the award winning F1 party, Circuit Lounge, in the lead up to the event.”
Through this partnership, Deezer was able to tap into Johnnie Walker’s extensive list of high profile celebrity influencers and their extensive social networks.
Recently, Deezer, in association with Deutsche Grammophon (a Universal Music company), Decca, and Accord launched an app, that offers a catalogue of western classical music from renowned artists and composers such as Andrea Bocelli, Luciano Pavarotti, Chopin, Bach, Beethoven and more. Besides the app, entire classical catalogues of Deutsche Grammophon, Decca, Philips, L’Oiseau Lyre and Accord are now available on Deezer.
The classical catalogue, as of now, is limited to Western artists and composers. “While not offered through the app, classical music from other geographies such as Indian classical music is also available on Deezer. For example, users can listen to Bhimsen Joshi on Deezer. Another example of an Asian classical musician on Deezer is 26-year-old pianist Yuja Wang from China,” says Inthaxoum.
The rising chart
Deezer claims to be present, today, in more than 180 countries and in every continent and aims to represent five percent of the global music market by 2016. To achieve that it has four priorities for investment:
“We will continue our global expansion, opening offices in both new and existing markets around the world and striking deals with the right partners,” says Inthaxoum, adding, “We’ve now reached the stage where the priority is getting as many people as possible to hear about our service and to sign-up in the markets that we’re in.”
To make itself heard louder in the region, Deezer recently roped in Gina Daryanani, as its PR Manager for Singapore and Malaysia.