Snap today announced a multi-year deal with Universal Music Group, the world’s largest music company. From Queen to Justin Bieber, users can clip songs from the extensive UMG catalog to use in their snaps and in the app’s tick-tack competitor spotlight. The announcement comes after the addition of Snapchat’s sound feature in October, which allows users to enhance their snaps with Snap’s licensed music. Snap says it has since produced more than 521 million videos using sound, with more than 31 billion views.
Of course, Snapchat’s investment in music is a direct response to TickTock’s music growth. Last year, a song from Fleetwood Mac’s 1977 album “Rumors” recorded “Dreams” re-entered the Billboard charts, the ticket went viral. Dance trends often go viral on tickets, which could boost sales of an artist featuring his songs.
So, the more music is licensed by apps like TikTok and Snapchat, the more opportunities there are for other Nathan Apodach moments which means free promotion for the platform. Meanwhile, Zen Z artists like Olivia Rodrigo have taken to these social platforms to promote their new music. At Snap, more than 10 million videos were created using his song “Driver’s License” Sn Rodrigo was the first artist to use AR lenses on Snapchat to promote his record-breaking debut “The End”, but to be fair, he also shared AR’s effects on Instagram.
Olivia Rodrigo sings about “Deja Vu” on her new album and you can also get Deja Vu from Snap’s announcement. Tiktok also signed a deal with UMG in February. And before that, in November, Tiktok announced a new licensing agreement with Sony. Meanwhile, Snap’s portfolio of music partners includes Warner Music Group, Sony Music Publishing and more. These deals are not exclusive – you can create a video with “Deja Vu” on Snapchat, Tiktok and Instagram alike. When it comes to deals like this, it’s a constant battle of the reactive one-mindset. If Tiktok makes a deal with UMG, Snapchat needs to make a deal with UMG to stay competitive, which is what we’re seeing today. As our friend Olivia would say, it’s ruthless here.