By Vanessa B
Pefoma is a newly launched free live streaming social media platform specially tailored to enabling up-and-coming artists to reach their audience and monetize their content. We chatted with Steven Arinze, founder of Pefoma about what makes this app stand out among the crowd and the multiple ways it can be utilized by artists trying to succeed at their craft, all whilst keeping 100% of the earnings.
Can you tell us a bit about you and your background in the industry?
My love for music has been a lifelong passion. Growing up I always wanted to contribute something to the music world. Knowing I haven’t the voice to even entertain an audience in pub karaoke night, in 2014 I began working on my first major business venture. In 2015, I launched my headphones and audio brand called Phonaudio. This exposed me to the music industry, working with the likes of the On-Blackheath festival and the Urban Music awards and in turn, Artists who we got to know along the way.
What sparked the development of Pefoma and why is it relevant now?
The idea of Pefoma first came to me just after I launched my headphone company in 2016. At the time I realised that there wasn’t any social media platform designed or created specifically for musicians or artists to showcase and monetise their work. There wasn’t any platform (even till now) where a fan could go to discover new artists, enjoy their audio visual content and interact with them in one place. Platforms such as Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube are saturated with other talent streams, as well as complex algorithms, making it difficult for artists to be discovered. I saw how hard Artists, especially independents, had to work to generate and build their audiences, and at the same time, work full time jobs, whilst still finding time to create music I believe Pefoma is relevant to give them a “one-stop” shop if you like, where they could share their content, put on performances, and monetise their work, all in one place.
COVID has changed the music industry enormously. This has fast-tracked the adoption of live steam technology in the music industry for streaming live music performances to audiences. Artists can now reach far more audiences than they would if they only performed at local venues. Live streaming on platforms like Instagram, Facebook and YouTube does help the Artists to build their fan-base on socials but does not always generate a revenue stream. The artists rely mainly on revenue from music streams provided by DSPs such as Spotify, Apple Music, etc.
How does Pefoma allow performers to reach their audience?
When users sign up to the app, they are asked to select which music genres most interest them. Whenever an Artist from those selected genres signs up to the app, their content will appear on the users’ home feed. This allows both users and artists to discover new content based on their preferred genres. Also Pefoma features artists on the discover section of the app.
Within the app, every piece of content and also the Artists profile, have shareable links. Also, if you follow a certain Artist, you will get a push notification every time they post content or schedule a live performance. We heavily promote new Artists on both our socials, and within the Pefoma app. Also through our “Pefoma Presents” live sessions show where we bring Artists into our studios for live music performances,
Why use Pefoma, rather than say, Patreon? Or could they work in tandem?
With Pefoma, it’s free to join. The Artist is in full control of what they charge, and they keep 100% of earnings. Unlike Patreon we don’t take a commission. If the Artist doesn’t want to charge for content they don’t have to. Similarly, there is no chance of users being unexpectedly billed, or any subscriptions so it’s totally transparent to both Artists and Fans. Again, Pefoma was built solely for Music Artists, and all functions are developed with them at the forefront of the design. Whereas Patreon encompasses lots of different creators, not just Music Artists.
What advantages does Pefoma offer musicians over Spotify, Youtube, and so on?
Earnings are completely transparent on Pefoma. We also have tried to make it very easy for Artists to see what they earn, and the money is in their wallet instantly. They are not sharing revenue with other Artists like Spotify. We wanted to make it very open and easy for the Artist. Our coin system was created where all coins are worth the same amount, and like for like, our rate paid to Artists is much higher than the other platforms out there.
In what ways can we see signing with a major label having an effect on an artists’ autonomy over their brand? How does something like Pefoma try to solve that problem?
A lot of Artists feel signing with a major label would be selling out, and they fear losing control over their identity and values. We have tried to provide a platform where they can keep control over their music career, monetise their work whilst keeping 100% of earnings, and be a space for them to grow and evolve.
Could the app be a good way for artists to advertise their merch or other platforms that help provide revenue?
Watch this space! We have some exciting work going on behind the scenes to truly make Pefoma an all-round platform for Artists to succeed. Selling merch, music, and more are all in the mix and we are excited to be able to add these features in the near future.
What are some top tips you would give to artists trying out Pefoma for the first time?
- Embrace change! Yes, we are new and not as established as other social platforms, BUT we are here solely for the Artist.
- Ensure you post content regularly to keep your profile engaging.
- Share on socials that you are on Pefoma and it’s the place you will be performing, uploading exclusive content, etc. to ensure your audience knows where to find you.
- Create exclusive content, such as BTS videos, documentary-style videos (around songwriting, creative processes, etc.), that your fans would be able to purchase.
- Hybrid performances are here to stay – Artists should invest some time in understanding live streaming tech and how to get the best out of it whilst giving their audience a stellar show – Pefoma is here to help and we have lots of useful information on our website (pefoma.com)