Sony Music Entertainment partners with SendMe for mobile commerce
Sony Music Entertainment has partnered with mobile media company SendMe Mobile to offer mobile phone users access to the music label’s roster of artists through SendMeMobile.com.
As part of the agreement, SendMe will offer users a comprehensive selection of Sony Music ringtones, videos and wallpaper images of artists such as Kelly Clarkson, Carrie Underwood, Franz Ferdinand, T-Pain, Wyclef Jean, the Foo Fighters, Pitbull, Pink, Shakira, Beyonce and Alicia Keys. In addition, SendMe will deliver additional ringtones, images and video content from Sony Music’s extensive catalog never available before to mobile consumers.
“On the one hand this fills out our partnerships with all of the major labels, and very few direct-to-consumer companies in the U.S. have deals will all of them, as well as many indie labels,” said Russell Klein, cofounder/CEO of SendMe, San Francisco. “This is about a whole lot more than just the top 100 ringtones.
“This is a long-term deal that spans not just SendMe Mobile, our brand that sells ringtones, but also includes SoLow, our sweepstakes and reverse auction site,” he said.
“Similar to what we’ve done with Warner and Universal Music, we provide high-margin incremental revenue for Sony by selling ringtones, generating hype and pizzazz from the sweepstakes site, which is a natural extension for these labels.”
Sony Music Entertainment is a global recorded music company that is home to record labels such as Epic, Columbia, Jive, RCA, Arista, American Recordings and Jive Records.
Included in the content available at SendMeMobile.com are wallpapers, mobile games and ringtones.
Subscribers can download media directly onto their mobile devices at SendMeMobile.com or through one of SendMe’s distribution channels, such as Eventful, Univision and imeem.
SendMe also has deals will all tier-one and tier-two carriers in the U.S. to sell a $9.99 monthly subscription service or a la carte mobile content that ranges from $0.99 to $2.99 per download.
With this partnership, SendMe now offers content from all four major U.S. music labels and also features content from emerging labels, game publishers, movie studios and other content providers.
“Sony in some ways is the ideal partner, because beyond taking precut ringtones they take to other companies, we’re going to take a much deeper cut of their catalog,” Mr. Klein said.
“Basically we’re taking tens of thousands of additional master tracks and based on technology already in-house serving up tens of thousands of ringtones that haven’t been available previously on s fully licensed basis without having to invest loads of time-intensive labor and energy to do it,” he said.
“This enables us to go more broadly and deeper into one of our brand partners than we’ve ever done before.”
SendMe’s core demographic is consumers ages 15-25, extending up to 30, basically first-time mobile-phone owners through recent college graduates.
“That’s the sweet spot for anyone who is conducting mobile commerce, because by the time you get to 40 or so, a smaller portion of the population is willing to subscribe or buy mobile content on a recurring basis,” Mr. Klein said.
“What we do effectively is create ongoing paid relationships with our end-users, who sign up on a double-opt-in basis,” he said.
In addition to the ringtones, videos and wallpapers, SendMe and Sony Music will unveil co-branded sweepstakes to promote Sony Music’s artists.
For example, Sony Music recently ran a mobile sweepstakes offering music fans a chance to win a weekend in Las Vegas with Grammy-nominated artist Mario.
Sony tapped mobile media company SendMe Mobile for the mobile promotion available exclusively through the company’s sweepstakes site SoLow.com.
The grand prize winner of the Viva Las Vegas with Mario sweepstakes was flown to Las Vegas with a guest and treated to a two-night stay at the Red Rock Hotel and $500 in cash (see story).
“We were very pleasantly surprised and impressed by the eagerness of Sony’s marketing groups to launch and get the word out about the Mario sweepstakes very quickly,” Mr. Klein said. “Look for more of those types of sweepstakes from established and up-and-coming Sony artists.”