Since the Coronavirus outbreak, the music industry has taken a major economic hit. But despite the notable impact on the live music scene, demand for content is still high, and even likely to increase, as people spend more time indoors. A change in the environment places new demands on us, as people and businesses, to adapt in new ways. Music catalogue owners, for example, can improve their offering through AI innovation – and make it easy for users to find songs that match a specific emotion, mood or context.
Finding things is easier when there’s a way to recognise them. This rings true for every database, whether a physical building housing volumes of books or a digital library compiled of thousands of songs. Thankfully, human beings (resourceful as we are) created taxonomies; classification systems that help keep things organised. A taxonomy is the greatest asset your music catalogue can have (aside from great musical assets, of course).
Using a taxonomy for your content library is like having SEO keywords for your website. Your customers can only find you through Google if your website includes those words relevant to their needs. Similarly, the only way to retrieve a “happy” song from your library is if it’s correctly tagged to match that description.
Setting up an efficient taxonomy that uses the right tags will improve your customer’s search experience – and, ultimately, lead to your business performing better. To learn how to do this, check out our free guide: “How to ﬁnd the right taxonomy for your music catalogue”.
But where does artificial intelligence feature in this? Simply put, an algorithm reads your taxonomy and produces the search results your customer is looking for. This type of AI innovation is a reliable, long-term improvement to your catalogue that you can implement immediately.
Let’s explore three reasons music catalogues should tap into AI innovation – both now and post-quarantine.
AI innovation – an opportunity
Every crisis, no matter how severe, presents opportunities. The old ways of doing things are challenged, and quickly become outdated if they can’t cope with the pressure. Instead, new methods are introduced. We’ve seen this with the Coronavirus pandemic. Around the globe, businesses are banding together, turning to emerging technologies and forming new approaches that will serve towards establishing a brighter future. Startups are 3D-printing medical supplies and ventilators, while remote working tools become part of the daily work-life.
Some of mankind’s most useful contributions have come directly from history’s worst periods. The Black Plague decimated most of Europe. But it also led to better health and safety standards, a greater demand for knowledge and less labor-intensive work. During the First World War, Marie Curie invented the first mobile X-ray machines to help diagnose wounded soldiers – tools which are widely used today in emergency rooms and ICUs.
The time to explore new technologies is now. AI is already gaining widespread adoption across multiple industries, including music and entertainment. From technical adjustments on mixes to creative music generation, it’s gradually becoming an ever-present feature. This was the case pre-Coronavirus, but will likely continue moving forward.
AI innovation – resistance
Innovation is a natural response to change, no matter how disastrous or difficult. It’s how humans survived plagues, wars, famine, disease and any number of horrifying scenarios (Norman Borlaug genetically modified wheat to save the world from a food shortage in the 1970s). As we’re forced to overcome something, we strive to find a solution; we innovate, until things get better.
This innovation includes the technologies we choose. And desperate times call for reliable technologies. That’s because people have their hands full day-to-day, dealing with the crisis in front of them. It’s not just the threat of job safety and personal health, but also that of family members, friends and colleagues.
Where humans are overburdened, AI is always dependable. In fact, it’s currently being used to diagnose humans for illness and can potentially detect future epidemics before they strike.
AI can be added to your business to keep basic things running. This leaves more time for your staff to care for your customers, as (keeping a personal connection) personal contact becomes more important now than ever. Let’s say you have a large music library. AI can cover the repetitive groundwork of basic tagging, so supervisors have time to do the exciting high-level tagging. Turning to AI technology can reduce work pressure, and act as a form of resistance to uncertainty and – paradoxically – frees you up to appear more human to a potential client.
Learn on your downtime.
The Coronavirus crisis is keeping us physically isolated, but digitally connected. As a result, the way we do business appears to be changing. If remote work was already becoming more commonplace over the last years, it’s now a necessity. Tools like Slack, Teams and Zoom enable communication and collaboration from anywhere. The freedom to choose between home, your favourite neighbourhood café, co-working spaces or (if you insist) the office, might’ve been labeled a luxury. But living on lock-down means remote work becomes a critical infrastructure for the modern workforce in maintaining the global economy.
Being at home means you’ve got more time, and more control over how you spend it. By not commuting to work, attending social events or taking part in your usual outdoor activities, you’ve got the opportunity to research and try out new ideas. It’s tempting to watch funny YouTube videos or indulge in Netflix with all that extra time (and you should; that’s one thing the Internet has perfected). But choosing to get familiar with AI means you’ll be future-proofing your business, and better preparing yourself no matter how long it takes to return to normal.
Quarantine or not – AI is a technology that’s here to stay. And so are the world, and the people fighting to preserve it. Now is the time to embrace change. By getting your taxonomy right, you’ll permanently improve your music catalogue and your users’ search experience going forward.
If you’d like to supercharge your music catalogue with AI, schedule a free 15-minute call with Cyanite co-founder Jakob.