We teased another DSP announcement coming for Ed Sheeran’s new album ‘=’ yesterday in our story about his partnerships with Apple Music and Amazon. YouTube is the DSP in question: it has stolen a march on TikTok by bagging clips of all 14 tracks on the album for its YouTube Shorts service.
Sheeran hopped into an ice bath; played a mini ukulele and had a solo dance party (in separate clips, not all at once sadly) as part of the campaign, with the clips being showcased on his YouTube channel. The audio is also available for fans to use in their own YouTube Shorts videos.
It’s the second major global artist partnership for Shorts, following its BTS ‘Permission to Dance’ challenge earlier this year.
“Moving from BTS to Ed, two of the biggest acts on the planet, first and foremost shows the scale and the opportunity of the product,” YouTube’s head of music, EMEA, Dan Chalmers told Music Ally ahead of the launch.
The idea of a full album being debuted as clips on a short-video service isn’t restricted to YouTube however: TikTok did it in July with the new album from British artist Anne-Marie. The two platforms (and Instagram Reels, no doubt) will be competing for more of these kinds of exclusives in the months ahead.