Polydor’s head of digital Paul Smernicki says the label is pleased with the success of its Snow Patrol iPhone application, which was launched last month to promote the band’s new album.“We’re relatively pleased with the results,” says Smernicki. “We gave away more than 30,000 of them in the first week. The next step is to figure out what it’s added to the campaign, but the initial download numbers would suggest that it’s added quite a lot, as well as the buzz around it ahead of the album release. Of course, we won’t get that buzz every time.”One thing the app ISN’T is an interactive album, as reported online earlier this year when details first leaked out. In fact, the blogosphere was buzzing with claims that Snow Patrol had signed some kind of deal with Apple to become the first artist to release an album through the App Store rather than iTunes.“We were quite surprised by the level of interest,” says Smernicki. “The product manager mentioned it in an interview quite vaguely as one of about ten points of the album campaign, and those quotes turned into huge online buzz and speculation about it being an interactive album. We never said that, although we were pleased to be getting that kind of online buzz.”He’s hugely enthusiastic about the potential of iPhone applications, while stressing that it’s early days to figure out whether they deliver a decent return on investment for labels. He’s been combing the App Store for interesting examples.“There’s a lot that we can learn from non-music applications,” says Smernicki. “There are some really clever things going on with stuff like GPS. You could follow bands on tour, map their tour around the world, and make live video or audio from gigs available. You might have interaction from the artist too, creating video diaries and reviewing the shows. There’s potential to create something that has a real function.”Smernicki was talking to Music Ally for a feature in this week’s Music Ally Report, which is published today. For more details on our premium service, click here.

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