Growth in US Music Industry Revenue

Music industry revenues in the U.S. were up $1B in 2018 according to the  2018 Year-End Music Industry Revenue Report released last week by the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA). Streaming continued to be the dominant channel, reaching 50M subscribers and representing 75% of industry revenues. All other channels have been declining, especially digital downloads which have posted a -21% CAGR since 2014.

Music Industry Revenue in a Stacked Bar Chart and Change Cascade

I created the stacked bar chart to show both the overall growth of 41% over the 5 years but also to highlight the mix shift toward streaming. The CAGR column makes it easy to compare the trends by channel and the data row helps reinforce how important streaming has become. I added the cascade chart to show the drivers of the $1B revenue increase in 2018. All 3 streaming categories (paid subscriptions, digital radio and ad-supported on demand) increased, but paid subscriptions were, by far, the biggest winner in 2018. Vinyl (LP/EP) posted a small gain but the other physical and digital channels were in decline.

Stacked Bar and Cascade Charts of US Music Industry Revenue Growth

How I Made The Stacked Bar and Cascade Chart

  • First, I used Insert Multiple Charts from the Mekko Graphics ribbon in PowerPoint to add Two Charts Top/Bottom.
  • For the stacked bar chart, I pulled the revenue data for 2017 and 2018 from the current RIAA report and the data for the 3 previous years from past reports.
  • I added the CAGR calculation in the data sheet and set the column to show as a CAGR column.
  • To show the growth in streaming, I included the number of streaming subscribers in the data row and formatted it with a unit of M.
  • I added a growth line (absolute) to show the change over the 5-year period.
  • Rather than series names as labels in each bar, I included them in the legend and chose to place it aligned to the CAGR column.
  • I hid the X and Y axis for a cleaner look.
  • For the cascade chart, I copied the data in from Excel where I calculated the difference between 2017 and 2018.
  • Under Bars and Series, I set the last bar (2018) to show as a total bar.
  • I added an axis break to make it easier to see the change bars on the chart.
  • To switch the data from millions to billions, I chose a data scale of 3 under Format Chart.
  • I manually colored the bars to match the segment colors (streaming, physical, digital and other) from the stacked bar chart.
  • To emphasize the change between 2017 and 2018, I added a bar comparison line and formatted it to show the $ and % change.
  • I hid the Y axis for a cleaner look.

Take These Charts and Make Them Your Own

Download these charts and edit them using Mekko Graphics. Here are some other charts about the music industry that may be of interest: