Here's how Vertigo works:
With a premium Spotify or iTunes account, a user can select any song using the new social media application, Vertigo, and upload a photo or short video, generally less than 30 seconds, to any part of the selected song and have their photo or clip become a part of the 'Song Story' that Vertigo provides for that track.
In essence, Vertigo takes the best of Snapchat and Instagram and uses your song choice as the soundtrack for your photo or video clip.
As this is a crowd-sourced living, breathing entity, the Song Story changes constantly. "Our Song Stories are a composite of the user-generated content," says Greg Leekley, founder of Vertigo. "So, in order for your uploaded photo or video clip to stay a part of the Song Story, ‘likes’ are required."
While users can preview their photo or clip before posting, it won't immediately become a part of the Song Story until it has enough ’likes’ to surpass someone else's clip or photo already in that section of the song.
So, how do you get ‘likes’? Well, this is where networking comes into play. Users can post their photos or video clips to third-party social media platforms (Facebook, Twitter, Snapchat, etc) and invite their friends to 'like' their upload to push the clip or photo up in the queue.
The challenging part is to keep your submission in the Song Story without someone else's clip for that part of the song knocking you out of the queue.
And, with the major discussion of the moment being the lack of royalties being paid to streaming artists Greg says, "It's a great way for artists - local and world-renowned - to interact with their fans and get paid because each time Vertigo is used the user is giving a click to the artist by using their already paid premium streaming service."
"Artists are the most followed in social media," said Greg, but apart from their music videos, there has been no direct way to leverage that social influence directly tied to their music. Even when they share a lean forward music video, there is a value gap in what the receive economically per listen compared to the higher payouts from premium streaming accounts even when a more lean back or passive listening experience."
But, Vertigo goes deeper than that by also offering the ability to hold live mixers, where users can collectively listen to music, add songs to the cue, and chat with each other all within the app. This allows users to enter a shared musical experience without being in the same location. So when a new song drops, you and your friends can listen to it together no matter the location - more friends listening and chatting while the record is playing on a virtual jukebox equals more clicks for the artist. It literally is a win-win.
"Vertigo has received a patent to do what we do legally because there is no broadcast, nor do we distribute or stream music," said Greg. "What we've done is flipped the responsibility from the broadcaster to the listener. Each time someone in Vertigo hears music, they're hearing it from their own premium stream account. You never hear music with someone, you just suggest, through Vertigo, what you should hear from your own premium Spotify or Apple account."
Vertigo has also landed a patent to add social content to this environment. Now, when a million people see a social post, that's a million clicks that the artist just received for their song - instantaneously.
While still in the early stages, Vertigo is already a hit for those that strive for that user-generated snackable content.
Vertigo is free and available now from the App Store.