TechnologyThis is how the music industry uses augmented reality filters to make certain songs go viral on TikTok and Instagram

This is how the music industry uses augmented reality filters to make certain songs go viral on TikTok and Instagram

This is how the music industry uses augmented reality filters to make certain songs go viral on TikTok and Instagram

When Canadian country singer Drew Gregory wanted to promote his new single in January Stuckthe artist and his team opted to create a custom augmented reality effect for TikTok.

The filter, baptized What Farm Truck Are You in reference to a lyric in his song, he would hover over the heads of TikTok users and randomly generate a character-themed personality type. pick up (the popular trucks that dominate the roads of the United States) for each person. If the effect fell on Yellowstone Ram 3500 Super Cab (a well-known model of pick-up)for example, meant that the user “likes to be the boss” and “you can’t go against it.”

This effect potentiated the exposure of Stuck, because the song was set as the default sound every time a user added it to a video. Although Gregory only has about 3,000 followers on TikTok, his effect has been used in about 42,000 videos to date, according to the app’s counts. Stuck it has been added as a background song on nearly 16,000 TikTok posts.

“Maybe 95% of the users of this song in this filter didn’t know Drew”says Suzy Yoder, CEO of YO SUZY, a division of music marketing company Songfluencer who created the effect along with Gregory’s team. “For a budding artist with 2,800 followers, it’s very exciting. I can’t think of another way that would have happened without spending a ton of money.”.

More than ever, artists and record labels are turning to augmented reality as a novel tactic to promote songs, especially since the results of traditional campaigns of influencers they have become less predictable.

By creating custom effects through augmented reality tools like Snap’s Lens Studio, TikTok’s Effect House, or Meta’s Spark Studio, marketers can assign a song as the default for a visual effect, like a randomizer or beauty filter. .

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If the effect goes viral, thousands of users may end up posting a video with the song, which publicizes the artist and can generate views on platforms such as Spotify and Apple Music.

The use of augmented reality filters has skyrocketed on social networks in the last year. On Snapchat, more than 250 million users use augmented reality every day, with more than 6 billion views per day, the company has reported to Business Insider.

In April, when TikTok pulled its AR creation tool Effect House out of closed beta, it announced that AR effects had amassed more than 600 billion views across 1.5 billion videos on its app worldwide.

A viral effect can be tremendous in scope. A generative AI filter called “AI Manga,” which has taken off on TikTok in recent months, has appeared in 132 million videos. The song associated with the effect, “たぶん” by Yoasobi, has been used in 12 million videos to date.

Unlike campaigns influencers built around a dance challenge or meme, requiring users to learn a dance or comedic skit to participate, including augmented reality effects in videos is a low lift for users, several vendors point to Business Insider.

“The great thing about AR filters is that they are understood around the world,” explains Laurel Cass, head of music operations at marketing company Creed Media. “You can create a filter that transcends language and cultural barriers. They are also easily accessible.”

This augmented reality filter allows you to control and launch lightning with your fingers

Augmented reality filters are often deployed as a tactic within a broader marketing strategy for a song release, Cass explains. To promote StuckSongfluencer also hired influencers and created a challenge around the song through his video contest platform Preffy.

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“There’s not always a dance trend or story that makes sense to seed with a song,” says Johnny Cloherty, CEO of Songfluencer. “If you come up with a cool AR filter, it’s easier for the average user to create a TikTok with it than it is to create a dance.”

Music and tech companies are creating augmented reality experiences for festivals

As the music industry has embraced augmented reality, technology platforms are creating tools to help blend augmented reality into live performances like concerts and festivals.

Snap, which introduced augmented reality to social media through Lenses, announced in August a multi-year collaboration with Live Nation to create custom AR experiences for festivals like Electric Daisy Carnival and Lollapalooza. In February, the company introduced a new music recommendation system to encourage users to add songs to their augmented reality glasses.

“With the Lens Studio product, we’re constantly tracking and trying to optimize for label partners who see it as a new way to promote their song,” Manny Adler, Snap’s head of music strategy, said. Business Insider. “If I take a Snap and have a song on it with a Lens, you would be able to swipe up on your side, reuse the Lens, reuse the song. We also put a link whenever a licensed song is added that will take you to the Service streaming that you choose That attribution will give you an idea of ​​how it’s working at Snap.”

Meta Platforms, which allows creators to add augmented reality effects to Facebook and Instagram posts, is also looking for new ways to combine music with augmented reality. Last year, the company partnered with Coachella to create custom augmented reality experiences for Instagram around the festival. The company has also worked directly with artists and labels such as Doja Cat and RCA Records to create augmented reality filters linked to songs.

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“Artists hire augmented reality creators to create effects for specific pieces of music”explain to Business Insider Chris Barbour, Director of Augmented Reality Partnerships at Meta. “Often those effects interact with that particular song in a way that helps accentuate it, either by matching the beat or rhythm, or sometimes by displaying the lyrics of the song.”

Augmented reality music campaigns can end up being saturated

According to Cassie Petrey, co-founder of artist management and marketing company Crowd Surf, creating augmented reality effects around a song, album or its public image can be an effective way to engage fans. Petrey explains that her team worked with the Backstreet Boys to create a custom Instagram effect, “Which Backstreet Boy are you?” personalized for Instagram.

Other times, an AR effect with a tagged song may not have any contextual relationship to an artist or song, but can still give the artist’s music a boost.

“While the filter doesn’t always directly correlate to song lyrics or brand sentiment, using it can drive traffic from new niches that wouldn’t necessarily have found it naturally on your feed“explains Cass, from Creed, to Business Insider.

As with any social media trend, originality is important to help spread an AR effect, Yoder says.

“Like anything else, it will end up being supersaturated”, it states. “If it looks too much like something else, or if you have something that’s a little boring, you won’t get the results you want.”


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