TOPSPIN MEDIA By Lindsay Rawson

In 2007, Peter Gotcher and Shamal Ranasinghe co-founded the online promotion and distribution software platform, Topspin Media. Peter Gotcher is the co-founder of Digidesign and ProTools which has became the industry’s standard for audio recording and music production. However, CEO Ian Rogers has became the face of Topspin. Rogers was previously the GM of Yahoo Music, but left to purse his career at Topspin in April of 2008.

Topspin Media has developed the most comprehensive global technology platform for: creating and managing your own retail channel, effectively promoting anywhere music is discovered, consumed and shared and engaing directly with existing and new fans. Topspin thrives on being artist focused and data driven which has became their motto.

Topspin started out in stealth mode. They wanted to work with a few artist that “lend well to what they do” says Ian Rogers.  Rogers stated, “We pick artists we know that can really add a lot of value, and who are going to really grow the business, and want to have a professional solution.” (Social Tech) Artist such as Paul McCartney, the Beastie Boys and David Byrne were the ones who tested the Topspin platform. In June of 2009, Topspin announced to public their efforts. They became publicly speaking about what Topspin offers, and why data is the future of music.

So what exactly does Topspin do? They provide artist a set of tools/software to connect directly with their fans.  One tool that is offered to artist is the option to sell their merchadise and music directly to their fans. Topspin makes it possible for fans to buy products directly from the artist’s home page, and it also gives the artist the option to make bundle packages with their merch and music to sell to th public. Another tool is Topspin’s email for media widget. This widget offers the fans some type of media, be it a free MP3 download, CD or t-shirt, in exchange for the fan’s email address. This tool can build up the artist’s fanbase while building their mailing list as well. Topspin also gives artist the tools to sell their own tickets for shows. They have the software for the artist to go in and create as many tickets as they wish and they can sell them directly to their fans. Topspin also makes it easy for artist to stream all their music live on their page giving fans access to listen freely.  From the back end of the platform Topspin makes it possible for artist to located their fan base. The artist can log on to their Topspin account and view all their members geographically and through social media. The artist can see which fans have Facebook, Twitter, MySpace and so on. They can see how many friend/followers each member has. By having this knowledge, the artist can try to appeal to the members with the most friends/followers so that member can help the artist through word of mouth. The artist can also track their sales, shares, subscribers and plays. Here are a few screen shoots of Topspin to better explain the layout.

Their are several artist using Topspin now and are recieving positive feed back. Trent Reznor of Nine Inch Nails has always been looked at as an innovator with cuting edge ideas. Reznor is a member of the Topspin community. His home page for NIN is a Topspin platform. Reznor tweeted on Twitter  that Topspin “got it right” reguarding how to market and sell music in this day and time. Reznor takes advantage of many of Topspin’s services. One in particular is the remixing application. Fans can go onto the official NIN website and remix their music and repost it on the NIN page.

Topspin is changing the way artist market themselves and connect with their fans. They are making it possible for artist to leave out the middle man and deal directly with their fans. This is just another way labels are becoming obsolete. With the Topspin platform artist can do the main functions of a label on their own. Most of the technology that Topspin is using is not new; however, they are the first to put it all together as one package as a marketing device. Topspin has already generated a lot of buzz about their platform and it seems to only be growing for the better. Topspin has a huge future in media awaiting them.


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