Marketing hookmusic

Published on May 7th, 2010 | by Hugh Hession

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Giving your fans more choices to increase music sales

As an artist, you know full well how difficult it is to make money from your songs, especially when the majority of revenue derived from new fans is from single downloads.

The Buzz Factor’s Bob Baker unravels a workable pricing/packaging model at hypebot.com showing how an artist can increase their revenue by targeting your fan base divided by new fans, casual fans, and core.  The premise behind this, is that by offering multiple options of the way your songs are packaged and made available, you will be able to tap into the different segments of your fan base who will in turn, purchase your recordings that fits within their preferences.

For instance, Scott Cohen; manager of the band The Raveonettes, found that the majority of their music sales were from single track downloads. Like most bands, they offered their fans the option to download their entire album, or each track individually. Ultimately, they weren’t maximizing sales.

To counteract this problem, they decided to change it up and do a little experimenting. Instead of continuing their same distribution strategy, Cohen decided to add a third option: Three, EP formats split up into 5 songs each.

Here was their breakdown regarding formats:

1. Full length digital album- $7.99

2. Single digital download- .99

3. EP format (5 songs ea.) – $3.99

True, the third option is actually making less money “per unit” then each song individually, however as a whole, they have increased their sales.

So now, they impact all segments of their fan base as follows:

1) Core Fans: Have the option of downloading the full album

2) Casual Fans: Now have the new option of downloading EP’s at a lesser price than what they would pay individually.

3) New Fans: Single downloads

Packaging is everything, and often downplayed by many artists because they don’t fully understand the principles of marketing. Effective packaging means that the additional offering AND the price of that offering have to work collectively.

To tap into the additional “casual fan” segment as show above, you are pairing the offer of more songs with a price that serves to discourage purchasing single format downloads. The beauty of this, is that it’s a win-win. The consumer gets more bang for their buck, and the artist increases revenue.

Remember, everyone’s situation is different and understanding your fan base and how it relates to your genre is paramount to know what type of pricing strategies and offers to use. Still, this is a great example of how to use marketing effectively to create positive results and ultimately increase your music sales!

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About the Author

owns and operates Emerging Artists Entertainment Marketing & Consulting, LLC - a company devoted to cultivating aspiring music artists, He is also the head of Hession Entertainment Group, LLC (artist management) and the Music Industry Liaison for the artist discovery site, TalentWatch (www.talentwatch.net). He has over 25 years experience in the music business as a performer, composer, producer and artist manager. Hugh holds a BA in Marketing and is a professional member of NARIP and a voting member of The Recording Academy. He often speaks at seminars and workshops on artist development.



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