Barely a day goes by right now where TikTok doesn’t find itself mentioned in national (and international) headlines regarding wider geo-political machinations.
But, back in the music industry, the short-form video platform’s busy doing important business.
Today (July 22), MBW can reveal that TikTok has signed a multi-year distribution and marketing agreement with Believe – the Paris-headquartered company that works with some of the most successful independent artists and labels across the world.
The news comes after TikTok announced a global licensing deal with independent digital music agency Merlin in January.
Believe, which generated around $700m in digital revenues last year, employs over 1,200 people in more than 45 countries. The owner of DIY upload service TuneCore, Believe estimates that it distributes more than a third of the globe’s digital music in volume terms.
“Bringing Believe’s family of labels and musicians to TikTok will help our global and diverse audience discover new music while also delivering creative ways for artists and fans to come together on our platform.”
Ole Obermann, TikTok
Believe says the TikTok deal will provide it with in-depth analysis of market trends, as well as enabling Believe’s artists and labels to “benefit from more marketing coverage and optimise revenue opportunities” on the platform.
Effective immediately, the agreement also ensures that Believe’s entire music repertoire will continue to be licensed for use on TikTok globally. The partnership also covers TuneCore and its artists’ music on TikTok.
Believe-affiliated artists who have seen success on TikTok to date include The Limba, from Russia, who has seen 2.5m TikTok videos created featuring his song Smoothie, generating over a billion views.
Meanwhile, French electro star Petit Biscuit has seen his hit Sunset Lover also go viral on TikTok. More recently, Petit Biscuit performed another popular track, You, live on TikTok, which helped increase his followers on the platform from 16,000 in March to 100,000 in June.
Another Believe artist, Inder Chahal from India, has built an audience of 1.2 million followers on TikTok.
Meanwhile, since TuneCore launched distribution to TikTok in October 2019, over 200,000 of its artists have distributed approximately 300,000 releases on the Bytedance-owned platform.
Last year, Chinese New Year, a song distributed by TuneCore artist Sales (US) went viral; there are now 2.2m TikTok videos using the track.
“We are thrilled to strengthen our distribution deal with TikTok, adding an innovative dimension to it.”
Denis Ladegaillerie, Believe
Ole Obermann, Global Head of Music at TikTok, said: “We’re excited to be partnering with Believe and TuneCore, with their incredible track record of empowering the independent music community.
“Bringing their family of labels and musicians to TikTok will help our global and diverse audience discover new music while also delivering creative ways for artists and fans to come together on our platform. Supporting independent artists has always been hugely important to TikTok, and this partnership is the next big step in bringing a more diverse range of music to our community.”
Denis Ladegaillerie, Founder and CEO at Believe, said: “We are thrilled to strengthen our distribution deal with TikTok, adding an innovative dimension to it. I would like to thank both teams for their collaborative effort to further increase marketing coverage and revenues for our independent artists at all stages of their career.
“This is a fantastic opportunity for Believe’ s artists to engage deeper with their audiences.”
Through the new partnership, TuneCore’s TikTok team has put together an exclusive guide, called TikTok For Musicians: 101 Survival Guide to help its independent artist community get the most from the platform.
Believe has also invested in dedicated ‘TikTok audience development’ experts, and regularly offers its labels and artists training sessions and webinars in conjunction with TikTok.Music Business Worldwide