Understanding Byta’s Short Message

May 11, 2016 Byta Features
Byta's short message

 

“any chance we could get an extension on the 140 character limit in the message or is that kept minimal for a reason?”

– Byta’s first piece of user feedback

 

Yes, Byta messages are short for a reason.

Recipients repeat the same frustrations to us and it’s never a lack of words in emails.

In fact the opposite is true, they want a short message with a clear link to stream or download.

Notifications vs Conversations
Byta’s announcement emails are notifications the sender has shared audio with you. Same as Facebook, Soundcloud, WeTransfer or any other service highlighting an event and prompting you to take action.

As recipients sign up to receive to their own Free Byta Account they’ll be seeing your messages not only on email but also in their browser. Our upcoming iOS app makes listening even easier though messages will be displayed across even smaller screens. Plus, as users opt for push notifications reliance on email notifications decreases even further.

In short, too much text in an announcement email means information could be overlooked.

Notifications, no matter how long or short the message, are not the best place for detailed information. Conversations via personal email, message, phone or face to face, will always be more effective.

Mailchimp = Total Control
Mailing list emails are equally as important as notifications and conversations which is why Byta integrates directly with Mailchimp. We are the only service offering senders complete control over the style and length of their mailouts across whole campagins, instead of announcements via one service and shared audio via another.

Artist Account Pricing & Launch

April 20, 2016 Byta Announcements
artist_launch


We announced our Artist Account Beta quickly after launch and highlighted some artist feedback soon after. Since then we’ve released features for PRs and larger groups of users.

We’re back focusing on artists and those who work closely with them, studio people, managers, a&r, etc.

Part of the magic is all different types of users think Byta was built especially for their own needs. In fact around our Team Account announcement most users signing up were not labels or larger companies but artists and studio people, desparate for an alternative to dropbox, wetransfer or private soundcloud links.

That wasn’t an anomaly, our user base has been like that all along. The largest and most respected labels in the world share upcoming releases alongside artists and studio people swapping mixes of their unfinished work.

Byta is for everyone working with music today but until now our pricing focused on the heaviest users. Our Artist Account pricing will make Byta even more inclusive:

$15 USD
£10 GBP
€15 EUR

Check our Pricing and Features pages for more details.

In the meantime there’s still about 6 weeks to go until launch so get your first month free by joining the beta.

Team Accounts: Share, Forward, Collaborate

January 13, 2016 Byta Announcements
Team Account

 

Team Accounts are launching in March, compare pricing.

In our post announcing Teams we explained why current sharing options for groups (of any size) are woefully inadequate, for everyone from A&R departments, to small labels and promotion companies.

Pricing and features are important though Byta’s Team Accounts are about saving everyone time. Specifically time wasted deciding who’s responsible for sharing an album or track with the intended recipient(s). Then all the back and forth on which service is right for sharing in the correct format and required security settings.

Teams Benefit Everyone

Groups of users, of any size and configuration, can access and Share audio from across their whole team, direct from their own personal accounts. Byta’s unique Forward (FWD) feature enables Team members to Forward audio to others outside their team with Share settings they control.

Projects involve a web of interconnected people all over the world making their own unique contribution. Teams offer a uniquely fast, efficient and flexible way to collaborate while allowing all users complete control over their own work.

This ensures each and every recipient can listen in the cleanest and simplest way, the beginning of any successful record.

Artist Beta Feedback: Byta’s 3 Key Features

November 12, 2015 Byta Features
Artist Beta Feedback

 

Our Artist Account beta is a great opportunity to learn why more and more artists are using Byta to send & receive their digital audio.

Clearly there is growing disillusionment with private sharing via “social” audio platforms such as Soundcloud or Bandcamp. More surprising are those who, until recently, still shared tracks as email attachments or used generic ‘file sharing’ services lacking streaming support.

Everyone from Free Account users to those who’ve joined our Artist Beta, repeatedly highlight three ways Byta improves their experience of exchanging audio.

Audio Quality

This is frustration number one for obvious reasons. Artists are stuck in the middle when privately sharing their audio online. Generic file sharing services don’t offer streaming while social audio platforms offer only poor quality streams.

Byta streams audio at 320kbps (compared to Soundcloud and Bandcamp at 128kbps) which Spotify somewhat oddly refers to as “high quality” streaming.

We have been exploring lossless streaming though at this time 320k is the best balance of quality vs user experience.

WAV Support

Byta supports multiple file formats including the reading and writing of WAV metadata, ensuring the information you see on your screen is exactly what is embedded in your files.

Byta’s Free Account is the perfect solution to quickly swap tracks or review multiple edits and mixes. Stream audio from your own account and avoid the ‘click through/download/unzip/import to iTunes/play’ routine we have become accustomed to.

We support both WAVE and BWF, read more on the Gearslutz forum.

Security

Artists are very focused on security, just not in the same way a label might be. They are most concerned with ensuring their unfinished audio reaches the intended recipient only, in the format they intended, and preventing sharing on.

Byta’s Account Detect offers all users the flexability to decide the level of security that is right for them. Even our Free Account offers stream only sharing, with 7D expiry familiar to users of services such as WeTransfer.

Get in touch to join Byta’s Artist Account beta and lend your voice to how we improve Byta for artists.

Teams Preview – Forward (FWD)

October 21, 2015 Byta Announcements, Features
Teams Preview - Forward

 

So far we’ve focused on how Byta is improving the exchange of digital audio for individual users, PRs and Artists to name a few. Even our unique approach to pricing is user focused.

As we move towards launching our Team Accounts we’re shifting the discussion to how Byta improves collaboration for groups of individual users.

The status quo of audio sharing for organisations is archaic and unimaginative. Keeping audio “secure” usually involves anyone and everyone logging in to share from one central account or handing over contact lists for audio to be shared on their behalf. Both ridiculous and infuriating at the same time.

Who really wants to work like that? Time for change.

Byta’s Team Accounts link individuals together with shared storage. Users still send and receive from their own personal account yet have access to audio others on their team have uploaded.

So where does that leave those who collaborate and share audio from many different partners or teams?

Byta’s Forward (FWD) feature is the solution to your problems

Forward (FWD) enables Team Account users to forward audio to another user’s media while setting sharing restrictions in the process. That user will then be able to share the audio to their contacts, subject to the preset sharing restrictions, just as if they had uploaded the audio themselves.

The result is cleaner collaboration for all. Labels and other organisations can better control access to audio while partners such as PRs can keep autonomy over their own contacts and workflow.

Forward (FWD) is in beta. Get in touch to test. Team Accounts launching in the coming months.

Join Our Artist Account Beta

September 15, 2015 Byta Announcements
Artist Account

 

Since launching in July, I always seem to be reminding people we’re not a “promo service” or “only for label people” or, or, or….

We want you all to know Byta is one service built for everyone working in music, so today we’re announcing our Artist Account beta.

Somehow we’ve been trained to accept audio sharing as a chaotic mix of services and tools, loosely chosen by job, format and security requirements. In fact we are all connected, sharing the same basic need – to send & receive digital audio in clean and simple way, no matter what role we play.

We feel artists and everyone working alongside them – producers, engineers, managers, and A&Rs have been neglected. Stuck with free tools which weren’t designed for their needs, or forced to consider over-priced services with features they’d never use.

Yeah Yeah, Got It. How Do I Join The Beta?!

All you need to do is sign up for the Free Account then email us to request an upgrade to the Artist beta. Assuming you fit the profile “creators and those working alongside them” we’ll upgrade you right away.

The Artist Account is a lighter weight version of our Freelancer Account, so no contacts tagging, Forward (FWD), watermarking or Mailchimp Integration which most won’t need day to day anyway. Compare Accounts in more detail on our Features page.

Doing studio based work? We’re REALLY interested in hearing from you, especially your experience working with WAVEs and BWFs.

Read more about Byta’s Unique Approach to File Formats & Metadata.

Keep in touch and tell us what you think. Is there a feature you need we’re missing? Think we can reduce your number of clicks somewhere? Let us know

We are excited about taking this next step towards Byta truly being one service built for everyone working in music today.

Marc Brown
@viznomics

Announcing Byta’s Mailchimp Integration

September 2, 2015 Byta Announcements, Features
Mailchimp Integration

 

When we talk to Byta’s different user groups, themes start to develop.

For example, PRs all over the world express the same frustration. They feel it’s impossible to get music and information out to their contacts in a simple, efficient and consistent way, for each and every campaign.

Generally, this is because they need to jump between multiple services to share music, depending on the level of security each label (or release) is working with. Worse still, some are forced to submit their contact lists to labels for direct delivery to media. We are specifically addressing this issue with our Forward (FWD) feature.

Still, it’s easy to forget all this chaos impacts recipients most.

Those in the media receive so much music from so many different sources, clicking through to multiple services is confusing, if not infuriating. So much so we’ve been told over and over it has a direct impact on recipients’ listening habits.

We are committed to helping PRs win back control over how they work while giving recipients the same control over how they receive. Now it’s time to take that further.

Mailchimp For Mailouts / Byta For Music

Now with Byta’s Mailchimp Integration senders only need Mailchimp for mailing lists and Byta for audio.

The benefits are clear:

  • one contact list to manage
  • uniformity of design across all mailouts
  • share audio in any format and with any security settings

The result is a consistently clean & simple user experience for recipients.

Best part is the integration takes seconds to set up. Adding audio to your mailout is as simple as pasting a little code, as you would a Soundcloud embed or social links.

Read more on Mailchimp’s Byta Integration page or Byta – Mailchimp.

For full instructions read our Mailchimp Integration article in Byta’s Knowledge Base.

Already a user? Log in and add your Mailchimp API Key on your settings page to get started.

Account Detect – Smarter, More Secure Audio Sharing

August 17, 2015 Byta Features
Detect Account

 

Until now we’ve been forced to use different tools and services to share digital audio based on each different need. WeTransfer & Dropbox for quick file sharing to collaborators, Soundcloud for streams or watermarked promotion and other secure media services for higher security.

Byta offers Senders the flexibility to decide the level of security on a per share basis, eliminating the need for multiple tools and services.

For most, sharing security isn’t a priority. You know and trust the recipient and/or you have zero concerns about your audio ending up with anyone else. Those users don’t need to think about watermarking, limiting the number of downloads or setting expiry.

Secure audio sharing isn’t solely about watermarking. Being practical about how you share is equally important, no matter who the recipient is. Combining Byta’s flexible Share settings with the ability to detect if a Recipient has an Account offers a new and unique range of security options.

Sharing your audio as streaming only, be it watermarked or not, is still the most effective way of ensuring files don’t end up with someone else by mistake. Additionally, setting expiry ensures Senders don’t need to continue monitoring stream counts for suspicious behaviour.

Byta’s Alternative To Forced Sign Up

There’s no question a stream behind a login offers the highest level of security possible when sharing audio online. Meanwhile, everyone knows demanding Recipients sign up en masse is the best way to discourage anyone from listening.

So where’s the middle ground? Now whenever you add Recipients to your share users with a Byta Account will show as blue (image above). This way you know you are sharing your audio as securely as possible.

Someone not a user? Ask them to sign up, then check before sharing. Who could refuse a personal request? You are merely being conscientious when letting certain people listen before anyone else… and they are one of those first few!

Launched! Announcing Byta’s Referral Program

July 14, 2015 Byta Announcements
Byta's Referral Program

 

Word of mouth, the personal recommendation, has always held an outweighed role in music. We’ve all learnt about new artists, records, labels, met new people and found new jobs via our friends and Byta should be no different.

People talk, and the talk about Byta has been good great though of course everyone should try something new for themselves.

Byta’s referral program is our way of giving each and every person the chance to fully experience Byta, one service built for everyone working in music today.

OK, so how does it work?!

Everyone with a Freelancer Account has their own unique referral code, accessible from the ‘REFER A FRIEND’ button under Contacts.

Anyone signing up or upgrading using a referral code will receive their first month free. The referrer will also receive one month’s discount of 50% for every person who signs up with their code (max 6 months).

Need a code? Tweet us and we’ll sort you out.

@BytaLtd

Announcing Our Clear And Simple Pricing

June 10, 2015 Byta Announcements
Clearer Pricing

 

We are very happy to have finally announced our pricing.

As we’re stepping out with our own approach I wanted to personally take this opportunity to give everyone insight into our thinking.

Settling on a pricing structure (and price!) is notoriously difficult though we were clear in knowing what we didn’t want to do.

Byta is a service built for everyone working in music today. In order to be that service we are opposed to the following for obvious reasons:

  • opaque or unpublished pricing
  • signup fees / no self signup
  • forced group pricing (single user pays same price as X users)
  • bandwidth caps
  • watermarking as a required feature

In addition, our free tier is integral to Byta.

For some users it’s the key to an improved receiving experience. Others will also use Byta for quickly sharing their audio when Byta’s additional features aren’t yet required. We welcome all free users, no matter how they choose to use our service.

Lastly, much has been made of the new VAT MOSS legistation introduced earlier this year. Read a good overview from Digital Arts. VAT MOSS is frustrating for anyone dealing directly with UK & European customers online, but as of January 01, 2015 it’s the law.

VAT MOSS can be messy to say the least so we’d like to thank Will Bond for his VAT MOSS Implementation Approach which formed the basis of our solution.

Want to talk pricing or anything else? Get in touch.

Marc Brown
@viznomics