Earlier this week, Steve Jobs announced that Apple is launching a music-oriented social platform through iTunes – Ping. The social outlet may be a good way for marketers to engage the many consumers who use iTunes, but they'll have to get creative with their campaigns and brand promotions.
At the recent Apple conference in San Jose, California, Jobs explained that Ping is available to iTunes 10 users, reports the Washington Post. Marketers may be interested to know that this platform stands to reach a significant number of consumers – the Post quotes Jobs' claim that Apple's store currently boasts 160 million accounts and it makes billions of content sales.
At the same time, Ping will generate profits through iTunes sales, so it may not offer traditional advertising opportunities such as those on Facebook or Twitter.
Ping will be a place where music lovers can follow their friends and find new music based on their connections' interests. They'll have the option to get music recommendations from their favorite artists as well. The site will also inform users when artists they follow are performing near them, and it will show them which friends are attending different concerts.
If marketers want to use Ping to connect with consumers, they might consider creating accounts and sharing music befitting of their brands' personalities. Since revenue will be generated through iTunes – not ads – the site could serve as practice in producing content that engages prospective clients.
Apple's entry into the social scene speaks to the overall rise of the platform. Research firm eMarketer predicts that social network ad spend will rise 31 percent to $3.3 billion this year and hit up to $4.3 billion in 2011.