EMI Exploits “New World of Data”

Record company EMI Music wanted to integrate the large amount of information it usesincluding massive consumer surveys, demographic, and partner data from companies such as iTunesto gain a single global view for its artists. By deploying Microsoft SQL Server 2012 Fast Track Data Warehouse technology, EMI now has an accessible single source of country, consumer, and partner insight data to support decision making about the needs of consumers in 25 countries.

EMI Music is the world's fourth-largest record company in terms of market share. It manages artists and distributes CDs, digital music, ringtones, and merchandise. The firm operates in 25 countries through three regional divisions, including the United Kingdom and Ireland.

The music company has a wealth of complex information from both internal and external sources, but, until recently, decision makers were unable to exploit the value of this "Big Data" store. David Boyle, Senior Vice President of Insight, EMI, was determined to launch a suite of projects to derive value from the data and generate insight in three key areas:

Country data. Prior to the deployment of the country insight projects, EMI had outdated and incorrect internal and external demographic and geographic data. This made it difficult to support marketing business decisionsfor example, pitching and promoting artists in new countries.

Consumer data. EMI didn't have an effective method for processing the massive amounts of survey data collected by the business to better understand consumer music tastes and buying behaviour. It was difficult to perform analysis across countries and time zones.

Partner data. EMI distributes its music through around 200 external partner organisations, including iTunes and Spotify. But there wasn't a method for analysing or reporting on partner activities other than those related to financial transactions. The business required deeper insight to help with a range of strategic decisions and drive extra revenue from existing and proposed partners.

Boyle says: "The overall solution is split into the three key insight areas, but the primary objective was to unify all the information into one consistent subject area. We wanted it to be easily accessible to every EMI decision maker in 25 countries."

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