In February 2016, YouTube acquired BandPage, a service that more than 500,000 musicians were using at the time to control how their profiles displayed on different music services like Shazam, Vevo, Napster and Deezer. BandPage provided a central space where bios and photos could be saved and updated across these platforms.
Since this acquisition, YouTube has been working to incorporate BandPage’s functionality into it’s platform. This has taken the form of the YouTube Artist Center. This feature, located within YouTube’s Creator Studio, is currently only available to previous BandPage members, but YouTube is working on bringing it to all artists across their platform.
As of March 8th, 2017, BandPage discontinued some of their previous services and invited users to transfer profiles, bios and photos to the new YouTube Artist Center. Some of the services and hosting will remain available to previous users, but as BandPage winds down their previous operations, they will work with YouTube to move all services over and create new ones within a new space on the YouTube platform.
All that is required of BandPage users to move to YouTube is a profile photo or biography on their BandPage profile and administrative acces to the account they would like to transfer. Moving a profile, however, will remove it from BandPage, so BandPage has provided an option for users to backup their accounts.
The new YouTube Artist Center will also work in tandem with previous features, like Official Artist Channels, that share a similar function.
While YouTube Artist Center is currently only available to previous BandPage users, Official Artist Channels can be set up for anyone that has a YouTube channel that is owned and operated by an artist, their manager, or their label, and has at least three music videos on YouTube. YouTube then informs the user when the channel has been upgraded to an Official Artist Channel.
Official Artist Channels can be used to organize an artist’s content across the YouTube platform, spotlight promotional content, and boost their discoverability in search by linking fans to their channel from a watch card on the right side of the screen. Additionally, having an Official Artist Channel enables artists to use the YouTube Creator Studio app to see analytics across all of the channels where their music is uploaded, including the artist owned & operated channel, topic, and VEVO.
Together, the YouTube Artist Center, Official Artist Channels, and analytics from YouTube Creator Studio present some very powerful tools to display and track artists’ content and overall presence across the YouTube platform.