Wavo Grows Revenue Over 1,000%

By Bruce Harpham Wednesday, December 9, 2020

Wavo, a marketing automation product for the music industry, has grown its revenue by more than 1,000% from 2016 to 2019. Based in Montreal, Canada, startup Wavo helps agencies and sophisticated markets use online advertising more effectively. Specifically, effectively leveraging AI and machine learning is a big reason why Wavo has grown and been successful at securing funding.

How Wavo Uses AI to Market Music

Marketing music, perhaps more than other products, has historically been challenging. Some music groups, like the Grateful Dead, marketed their music by leveraging grassroots engagement with fans over many years. Other musicians enjoyed support from entertainment companies to launch international concert campaigns.

Wavo came to the scene to help musicians, songwriters, and others in the music industry use online advertising more effectively. The platform starts by combining marketing data from multiple online platforms into one place. That gathering process saves time in terms of performing marketing optimization. Once the data is organized, Wavo helps marketers to create interactive marketing reports.

Wavo Optimizes Results for a Concert Tour

“We worked with a client to maximize return on ad spend for a North American concert tour. The challenge was to forecast marketing results for [ten] different territories, each running [three] different pre-sale, on-sale, maintenance and close-out campaigns. Wavo marketing forecasts allowed the artist’s team to see the impact of COVID-19 on ticket purchase [behavior] in real-time. As the marketing began to underpace the team shut down the tour early saving time and money,” explains Conor Clarke, Wavo CEO and Co-Founder.

Wavo Offers More Than Software

Selling advanced marketing software is getting more difficult today. According to Chiefmartec.com, there are more than eight thousand marketing automation software products as of 2020, up from less than four thousand in 2017. Wavo has already cut through some of the noise by specializing in the music industry. That's not all, though.

Wavo has also set itself apart from other marketing automation companies by offering services. The company's services offering, called managed services, helps musicians and agencies handle the entire analytics process for them. That's valuable for the buyer because it reduces the need to invest time and energy in learning Wavo and Big Data analytics.

If your startup is focused on selling software, consider taking a page from companies like Wavo. Selling professional services such as training, managed services, and consulting is an excellent way to generate immediate revenue and help customers achieve success faster.

Who is Funding Wavo?

Wavo has received funding from FounderFuel (a startup accelerator) and Real Ventures. The investment amount has not been disclosed. However, the company’s annual revenue is estimated at $13 million. Additionally, their customers include giants in the music industry like Warner Music Group and Universal Music Group.

How Wavo Delivers Marketing Results on Spotify

More than any other platform, Spotify has become a critical music streaming platform. The music platform has more than 144 million premium users. That means it is an attractive place for musicians to market their art. There's just one problem — standing out! There are dozens of channels on the platform.

Using Spotify advertising can help to solve this problem. Unfortunately, it is challenging to measure results effectively on the platform. "We recently ran a campaign for Rich The Kid. It was incredible to see almost 20% of the audience we reach take deeper action like adding a song to their playlist," says Conor Clarke, Wavo CEO & Founder.

Wavo's Approach to Industry Networking

As a relatively young company, Wavo has made good publicity and content marketing to build its profile. In 2020, the company earned attention through Deloitte's Technology Fast 50™ award. This award, given annually by the consulting firm, recognizes fast-growing technology companies that have achieved a minimum of $5 million in revenue.

Wavo has also used content marketing strategies to build connections in the music industry. Wavo's interview with Jesse Coolbroth, Vice President of Fan Engagement and Digital Marketing at Warner Records, explored the challenge of always-on content creation for artists. Wavo also looks at the industry's talent management part in its interview with Sam Alpert from the Paradigm Talent Agency.

Regularly publishing interviews with accomplished leaders in the music industry makes Wavo's website into a destination. If you are looking to grow your company's profile, take note of Wavo's approach. Becoming well connected with a dozen industry experts through interviews can help you to grow your network quickly, even as a startup.

Three Ways Music Marketers Use Wavo

Depending on your marketing expertise, there are different ways to use Wavo.

  • Media Planning. Many musicians have limited budgets for their online advertising. Using Wavo can help you to create realistic goals with your current marketing budget.
  • Media Buying. Ever wondered if you should put more money in Facebook ads or explore a new platform? You don't have to guess anymore. Wavo gives you ad operations and analytics capabilities together so you can reach your key audiences.
  • Media Measurement. Music groups and marketers need to make every dollar count. That's where Wavo's measurement capability comes in. You get fast measurement data across several platforms fast. That means you can prepare for your next campaign more quickly.

About the Author


Headshot for author Bruce Harpham

Bruce Harpham is an author and marketing consultant based in Canada. His first book "Project Managers At Work" shared real-world success lessons from NASA, Google, and other organizations. His articles have been published in CIO.com, InfoWorld, Canadian Business, and other organizations. Visit BruceHarpham.com for articles, interviews with tech leaders, and updates on future books.

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