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Archive for Music Marketing

Below you’ll find posts that deal with how musicians be better at marketing their art. Whether it’s shows, merch, music, etc. It can all be found in Music Marketing.

How Am I Doing?

Everyday a different news source reports that the Compact Disc is a dying medium. We get it already. Life moves on…doen’t it? In fact, I’ve never been a big fan of the CD anyway. When I pop a shiniy silver disc into my clunky old sound system, and the music skips, I’m instantly transported back to the early 1980’s (and not the good parts either).

The Angel ft Jhelisa – “Ultra Light” Giveaway

Its been a few months since I’ve run a giveaway here on my blog, but I couldn’t turn down an opportunity to support this amazing single. 5 winners will receive a free download of, the single “Ultra Light” including two versions by The Angel, plus a Jahta style remix by DJ Drez. Winners […]

Experiment: Everyone must have a CD, even if free.

If you are a performing musician that sells CDs at your shows, please consider this:

Terry McBride of Nettwerk told this story at a recent conference:

A band he was managing was doing the usual thing of selling CDs for $15. They’d mention it once or twice from the stage, and sell about $300 per night on average.

He asked them to try a completely different approach:

  1. Say to the audience, “It’s really important to us that you have our CD. We worked so hard on it and are so proud of it, that we want you to have it, no matter what. Pay what you want, but even if you have no money, please take one tonight.
  2. Mention this again before the end of the show, adding, “Please, nobody leave here tonight without getting a copy of our CD. We’ve shared this great show together so it would mean a lot to us if you’d take one.”

It changes the request from a commerical pitch to an emotional connection. (Replace market mindset with social mindset!) Allowing them to get a CD for no money just reinforces that.

Terry said that the band did this for a while, and soon they were selling about $1200 per night on average, even including those people who took it for free! I think the average selling price was about $10.

But the important part came next:

Because every person left each show with a CD, they were more likely to remember who they saw, tell friends about it, listen to it later, and become an even bigger fan afterwards.

Then, when the band came back to a town where they had insisted that everyone take a CD, attendance at those shows doubled! The people that took a CD became long-term fans and brought their friends to future shows.

Want to try it? Document specifics.

So far this is just rough word-of-mouth from Terry, but it seems like it’d work. Anyone want to try it? If so, I’d like to tell your tale here in a future article.

So please log some specifics, before and after.

BEFORE: How many CDs did you sell at your last 5-10 shows? Average the number and price to come up with an average per-night total and average per-CD price.

AFTER: What were those same numbers for the next 5-10 shows using this method?

Also, please note any specific things you did or said that worked exceptionally well, and perhaps any interesting responses you heard back from the audience.

If you’re able to note attendance at the same venue for a concert where you did this, then at that same venue afterwards, that’s a nice bonus.

Save these specific numbers, and either post them as a comment below, or email me at derek@sivers.org. Be able to give the venue info, too, because if this goes exceptionally well I’ll be contacting the venue for their verification and perspective.

http://www.flickr.com/photos/larskflem/113453239/

Peter Hadar + Clipse Show @ CMJ 09

On a cool, pre autumn night my wife and I fell into a lowkey sushi spot in Downtown Jersey City. More people crowded into the place than I had expected, but one individual had a special reservation. One that would reveal a lifelong love for sports, fashion and the arts. His name is Peter Hadar.
Born […]

Das Racist Remembers 9/11

I found myself chatting with Himanshui and Victor of the controversial new rap duo, Das Racist, today – the eigth anniversay of the World Trade Center bombings. Unlike most days in recent history, these bohemian Brooklyn’ites, recalled exactly what they were doing.
V: I was doing push-ups, listening to Big Pun’s Capital Punishment when my parents […]

You & The Post Album Music Fan

Last week, Forrester Research relased their report, “Music Release Windows: The Product Innovation That The Music Business Can’t Do Without” by Mark Mulligan. The report verifies the obvious, but makes some very valid points that are worth jotting down.
The good news is,”more people are listening to more music with more technology than ever before“. The bad […]

Unlearning

When I would speak on panels at music conferences, I’d always find it funny how all of the panelists’ opinions were completely tainted by their own self-interest.

Someone would always ask us, “What’s the future of the music business?

The guy whose company sells MP3s would say, “MP3s are the future. No DRM. Unencumbered. The public has spoken and they want MP3s.”

The guy whose company sells subscriptions would say, “Subscription services are the future. Anything, anytime, anywhere. No need to keep a huge music collection.”

The guy whose company sells CDs would say, “People still want something tangible they can hold in their hand. CDs are going to be around a long time.”

I would just say, “Nobody knows the future. Anyone who pretends to is full of shit and not to be trusted.” (Which would of course get a weird look from my fellow panelists, but oh well.)

I still get asked to talk about the future of the music industry, but I just can’t. My answer to everything is, “I don’t know.

For the last 11 years, I spent most waking hours thinking about how to sell and distribute music. I’m completely unobjective. I don’t have fresh eyes about it anymore. I know my opinion is not to be trusted.

You’d be better off to ask a young music fan or musician, unencumbered by too much knowledge of the past.

I love musicians. I love the creative process. I love the art and craft of learning, writing and playing music.

But the “industry” around it? Eh. No interest. Sorry. I’m burnt-out on that subject. I need to spend a couple years unlearning before I can think about it again.


“The illiterates of the 21st century will not be those who cannot read and write but those who cannot learn, unlearn, and relearn.”- Alvin Toffler

“I can’t understand why people are frightened of new ideas. I’m frightened of the old ones.” – John Cage

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