CMU INSIGHTS RESEARCH HUB

IMPALA’s One Step Ahead

A digital intelligence facility for independent music companies across Europe




IMPALA – the pan-European organisation promoting and supporting the independent music sector – has teamed up with CMU Insights to create One Step Ahead, a new digital intelligence facility to enable independent music companies across Europe to navigate and identify trends, developments, challenges and opportunities in the digital music market.

Made possible by the kind support of Merlin, One Step Ahead provides reports, tools and training to help independent music businesses of all sizes to get the most out of today’s digital opportunities in Europe. The facility is led by IMPALA’s digital committee and informed by a pan-European network of leading experts from across the music and digital industries.

CMU Insights brings its expertise in streaming, copyright, digital distribution and marketing, music and media technologies, and entertainment law, alongside its existing research, reportage and training platforms. Utilising that expertise and infrastructure, CMU ensures all the latest topics are covered, and that the facility is presented in the most accessible way.



ONE STEP AHEAD REPORTS

The Practical Impact Of New Technologies: Part One
We are kicking off 2022 with a two part report exploring the impact of new technologies on the music industry, reviewing the latest trends and developments in relation to eight kinds of technology, and considering how they are impacting on the way music is made, performed, recorded, distributed, managed, marketed and consumed.

In Part One we consider voice control, music recognition technology, creation tools and data tools.

IMPALA members can download the report here



Understanding The Digital Music Debates
In this fourth report from One Step Ahead we investigate the key digital music debates in 2021. Expanding on IMPALA’s Ten Point Plan to reform streaming models – and revisiting some of the newer issues raised in past One Step Ahead reports – we put the spotlight on seven different digital music debates, providing the background to each topic, and outlining proposals that have been made to address different issues and challenges.

It’s important that the wider independent music community is able to take part in each of these debates. This report provides you with all the information you need to navigate and understand the different issues, solutions and discussions.

IMPALA members can download the report here



A Diversifying Digital Market: Capitalising On The New Opportunities
In this third report from One Step Ahead, we look at the diversifying digital music market, and the platforms and business models which are going to play a key role in the next phase of market growth. That includes social media and video-sharing platforms, as well as livestreaming, podcasting and direct-to-fan services.

How are these platforms utilising recorded music and providing new revenue streams? How can artists, labels and distributors all fully capitalise on these opportunities? And what impact does this have on the artist/label relationship?

IMPALA members can download the report here

Check the CMU article on the report here



Marketing Power Through Data And Networks
In this second report from One Step Ahead, we look at how music marketing – and the role of record labels as key marketeers in the music industry – has evolved over the last two decades. Labels remain crucial marketing partners for the artists they sign and work with, but the way a label delivers value has changed and is changing.

As a label, your data and your networks play an increasingly important role, maximising your marketing power and boosting the value of your campaigns. In this report we consider how to build, grow, manage and protect these crucial assets.

IMPALA members can download the report here

Check the CMU article on the report here



Playlists And Curation In The Streaming Music Market
In this first report from One Step Ahead, we review the role of playlists and curation on the main on-demand music streaming platforms in driving streams, plays, royalties, fanbase building and music discovery.

In Part One we discuss past, current and future trends in playlists and curation, identifying key developments and potential issues. In Part Two we review the current playlist ecosystem, categorising the different kinds of playlists and curation, and considering best practice playlist pitching.

IMPALA members can download the report here

Check the CMU article on the report here