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Alt-J shows how originality can get you really far in your music career.










Go the whole article to read the rest of Alt-J’s story and listen and watch to their playlists


Alt-J didn’t get where they are today by being predictable. And the same goes for their marketing campaigns.

The Mercury-winning three-piece are modern proof that the great independent music dream can still come true; that you don’t have to make knowingly mainstream music to smash into the mainstream.

This clearly goes for the marketing of the British group as well as their music – especially when it comes to their second album, This Is All Yours, whose global sales are now fast approaching half a million.

“Alt-J are an act that do really well on Spotify on an albums basis,” he says. “Alt-J’s last album was relevant on Spotify for over 18 months and we fully expect TIAY to do the same thing.”

[PIAS] and Infectious pushed for an even more special relationship with Spotify in Germany, and it paid off: Alt-J headlined a special free event co-hosted by Spotify and Radio Eins in Berlin, with the resultant sessions now available as a special album on the service.

“The strong focus on Spotify has been quite unusual compared to our other releases,” says [PIAS] Germany General Manager Stefan Struever.



AltJ Spotify

The impact of the Spotify strategy is now paying off: in Germany, Struever says Alt-J’s sales are close to that of their Mercury Prize-winning debut LP, with 40% of consumption digital.

One aspect of the campaign, however, impressed Struever more than any other. “We were especially thrilled by the Alt J app and would like to see something along those lines on future releases too,” he says.

But the imagination from team Alt-J in Paris didn’t stop at digital: more than 30,000 units of TIAY have now been sold in the territory, with more than 80% of them physical – an indication of why CD and vinyl remained such a focus.

What were the most important innovations in the alt-j app and how did they come about?
Slick, invisible GPS tracking which delivered you music with a little bit of wonder and the ability to message those who were also listening to the album in the same location.

What experiments/innovations were most successful, and which might you be able to use/inspire future campaigns?
For us the most taxing element was trying to balance users battery life (particularly on Apple devices) with the most compelling user experience.

Do you think GPS tracking technology will play an increasing role in marketing artists in years to come?
It’s old technology – we’ve used it ourselves to track a piece of mobile music for a Thom Yorke campaign nearly 10 years ago and to fan hunt Dan Le Sac and Scroobius Pip through Bristol in 2010.

How do you see artist apps evolving in the next few years?
There was a period where everyone was producing an app as an addition to a website.


StreeXB extends special thanks to PIAS for this article. Click here to read the rest of it and watch their music videos. And a many thanks to MoreThanTheMelody for the image.

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