SoundCloud, a favourite destination for musicians and music lovers, is making two major changes that, at the insistence of music labels, will begin generating revenue for both the startup and the content owners.
On SoundCloud is a combination of free and paid tiers, divided into Partner, Pro and Premier. The free tier, Partner, will be limited to three hours of
monthly total uploaded content, and basic features like the ability to play, like and comment on tracks.
The Pro tier is divided into two branches, Pro and Unlimited which, for $6/mo and $16/mo provide six and unlimited hours of uploads respectively, along with comprehensive stats and access to Quiet and Spotlight features. Quiet Mode allows creators to block or edit comments, while Spotlight lets them pin a certain track to the top of one’s profile.
Finally, Premier customers, currently available to certain brands as invite-only, allows content creators to advertise throughout the SoundCloud network. “The introduction of advertising is an important step for creators. Every time you see or hear an ad, an artist gets paid. If you’re in the US, you’ll start to experience occasional ads from our brand partners. We’re bringing ads on gradually. In addition to supporting creators, ads will keep the service free and open for people to listen to SoundCloud. Audio ads will only be served on the content of Premier Partners with their explicit consent. If you have a Free, Pro or Pro Unlimited account, you will not have any audio ads placed on your tracks.”
The distinction is that ads will only be placed before tracks of Premier partners, which means that Partner and Pro users will not be forced to have listeners hear an ad before they play a track.
SoundCloud, founded in 2007 by Alexander Ljung and Eric Wahlforss, has raised $123.3 million and is based in Berlin, Germany.
Source: On SoundCloud