With music business decisions becoming increasingly about innovative insights and being the first to discover new trends, artists, and opportunities to engage audiences, music creators benefit most from both a passionate network of supporters and also a diverse analytical toolkit.
Apple has been a pioneering force in digital music consumption for almost two decades, so artist success on Apple Music is vital to understanding artist success across other streaming and social platforms and music industry verticals.
While Spotify might have been the first mover in the streaming space, Apple really pioneered digital downloads at scale with the launch of iTunes in 2001.
The precursor to iTunes was an early mp3 player called SoundJam MP, which was originally released by Macintosh software publisher Casady & Greene in 1998. Apple acquired the company in 2000, relaunching SoundJam as iTunes a year later.
With its CD burning, playlist building, digital retail, and multi-format audio capabilities, iTunes would dominate the digital music space for the next decade. During the early 2000s, after all, the sale of mp3s was the best means the industry had to monetize digital music in an effort to combat piracy.
Importantly, Apple revolutionized digital music not just through software innovation but through hardware innovation, making digital music consumption possible on the go, thanks to handheld devices like the iPod and the iPhone.
But the company was still banking on an ownership model rather than a leasing model, leaving the door open for a software application like Spotify to pilot the latter model through streaming. In 2015, however, Apple followed suit with the roll-out of the Apple Music streaming platform, which grew from 10 million subscribers to almost 60 million subscribers in just five years.
In 2018, Apple acquired music recognition startup Shazam for $400 million, adding a new data and discovery source to their already robust catalog of digital audio-related verticals. Just a year later, Apple Music launched its own analytics back-end, Apple Music for Artists, which includes play counts, geographic data, purchases, and Shazams, making Apple Music analytics one of the essential tools for artists and their teams to have at their disposal.
Part of what makes Apple Music for Artists so valuable for an artist and their team is unique insights like absolute play count, average daily listeners, song purchases, and Shazam counts. Those are things you can’t really get anywhere else.
Apple Music for Artists also provides you with percentage changes for plays, listeners, Shazams, Apple radio spins, song purchases, album purchases, and video views across various dimensions from geography to gender and age over days, weeks, months, and years.
If you want to zoom in on geographic-specific data in particular (absolute play counts, average Monthly Listeners, and Shazams), Apple Music for Artists also breaks that down with both maps and also tables. So, if you want to see how your Shazams are correlating with your total plays and average monthly listeners in South Africa, for example, Apple Music for Artists makes it easy and intuitive.
For artists and their teams, having these detailed insights into streaming metrics makes Apple Music for Artists an absolutely essential tool in today’s increasingly data-driven industry.
Because tracks rule the day on streaming platforms, that’s what we try to bring to the fore, letting you filter not just your artist’s — but any artist’s — tracks across a number of dimensions. You’ll also be able to see instantly how many Apple Music playlists each track has landed.
Speaking of playlists, you can use Chartmetric to break down all of the Apple Music playlists an artist has ever been added to, filtering by editorial, non-editorial, and chart-based playlists. Then, you can follow the growth of an artist’s Playlist Count over time.
Our streaming charts provide an even more comprehensive view of music data at the market level with both current and also historical data for Apple Music’s unique Daily Top 100 chart, which you can’t get anywhere else (as far as we know). We also track this data for Apple’s Top Tracks by Genre, Albums by Genre, Trending on Playlists, Music Videos, and Shazam Discovery charts — in addition to Shazam’s country and city level Top 200.
While having a No. 1 track on an Apple Music chart is great, it’s also important if you’ve got 10 unique tracks on one of those charts. Arguably, the latter scenario is preferable to the former, and with our chart summaries, you can see exactly how many tracks each artist has charting, in addition to which record labels and genres are dominating over time.
With Artist Pages for the 2M+ artists in our database, compare and contrast individual performance on Apple Music and various other platforms across the digital music landscape.
We are a small, highly skilled team with members from diverse backgrounds, and that diversity is celebrated just as much as our work is. We’re talented solo artists, but we’re a much better band. We are as much music data rockstars as we are music superfans, and we thrive as a bridge between music and technology, data and creativity.
Sign up for a free account at chartmetric.com, dive deeper into our features at blog.chartmetric.com, and check them out for yourself. We can’t wait to see what you create.