The Slacker EQ Score is a new system that measures millions of data points on a weekly basis to show how users are engaging with the music they’re streaming. The weekly charts will list the 40 most engaging songs from across the service (also available as a station), plus rankings for six genres: Pop, Rock, Country, Hip Hop/R&B, Alternative/Indie and Electronic/Dance. The scores will be released every Thursday, with the first one released 6/6. The data is made available at blog.slacker.com/EQ. Slacker has also launched a station that counts down the 40 most engaging songs every week, available at: http://www.slacker.com/station/the-slacker-top-40
Slacker says Slacker EQ is the most accurate reflection of a song’s trending popularity and listener engagement in today’s world of streaming music. Do people choose to listen to the same songs dominating terrestrial radio airtime? Does an appearance on Saturday Night Live increase engagement with an artist? Does an artist’s exploits in the tabloids impact people’s affinity for a track? These are trends Slacker says Slacker EQ can help the industry decipher.
A number from one to 100, the score measures hundreds of millions of weekly data points to show how deeply users are engaging with a particular song, based on specific positive and negative actions, including:
–Starts – the number of times a song was started on the Slacker service
–Completes – the number of times a song was listened to in its entirety
–Hearts – the number of times a user “hearts” a track, requesting to hear it more frequently
–Shares – the number of times a user shares a track via Facebook, Twitter, Google+, Tumblr, Pinterest or email
–Skips – the number of times a song is skipped before reaching completion
–Changes – the number of times a user changes the station when a song plays
–Bans – the number of times a song or artist is banned from playing again
“The majority of people stream music and old charting methods capture sales or basic streams which only tell a fraction of the story,” said Jack Isquith, Slacker’s SVP/content programming and strategic development. “As access to music trumps ownership for consumers, engagement quickly becomes the most important metric for what’s hot and trending. Slacker EQ provides fans, artists and labels a real-time understanding of not only what consumers are listening to, but how they’re interacting with music, and how their actions change over time.”
Slacker is also the only digital music service that has billing and distribution deals with every major North American wireless provider, including Verizon, AT&T, Sprint, T-Mobile and U.S. Cellular. In addition, Slacker is available in vehicles including Ford, GM, Chrysler Group, Acura, Honda, Scion, Subaru and Tesla.
RBR-TVBR observation: This is great data for performing rights organizations, music publishers and artists. Merging social media behavior along with plays–and how listeners reacted to each song–is going to boost Slacker’s place in the industry and may even help with rights and rates deals down the road. Since it’s not patented, we can assume other music streaming providers will be working to produce similar real-time reports of this magnitude.