Well i’m not going to beat about the bush. Muzu TV is excellent in both concept and design. It uses the ad sponsored monetisation strategy that Spotify has so successfully adopted and shares revenues with artists and labels (depending on who owns the music/video).
Look and Feel
Design wise it’s very pleasing to the eye with a green and black theme and (I hate the use the phrase) a Web 2.0 layout. Site usability is fairly intuitive and no streaming problems with the videos. Joining up asked me to enter the captcha code ‘hendryx’. Coincidence? I’d like to think not.
The great thing content wise, is that you don’t just get access to official music videos, you can also view live videos or behind the scenes footage. What ever the artist or management decide to upload or provide. In the ‘Fan TV section users can upload live videos, cover versions or comments to artist channels.
Social media wise there are some nice touches. Users can create their own profiles and see what videos their friends are watching. You can create your own playlists and even opt to be notified when your favourite or niche artists are added to the catalogue. Users can share videos and embed a ‘MUZU player’ on social networking sites like Facebook, Bebo and Myspace.
Its the extras though that caught my eye. They offer a free recording facility for bands/artists to use. I’m not sure though if this is to record music or a music video though? Maybe its both? Muzo also advertise a free digitisation service to convert your analogue videos to digital.
Well so far record companies that have signed up include:
There may be more but this is good for starters.
Why Use It?
MUZU TV could be big. There is obvious demand for listening to music and so this is slightly niche. What this provides is a hub for labels and bands to distribute videos to affiliate sites through use of the embed function. However Myspace already has Myspace Music providing music videos. Muzu TV need to find their USP. Find what really sets them apart from Myspace and even Youtube as a music video provider. Yes from a content perspective they offer revenue sharing but from a users view, why use it? Differentiation and marginal utility are key.
Videos play using a Flash version which is not supported by most smartphones so a mobile app is a must.
If Muzu can push their RFB (Reason For Being) to users then they should be successful. What they have over Myspace and other music video providers is the backing of the big labels. This almost makes them the ‘Official’ music video site. Rather than working AGAINST brands like MTV (not that they are BTW!) they should work with them to encorage links and embeded videos for official music videos. Also, much of their conent is rare and unique. ITV artist interviews and live footage are great things to watch.