BANDS: Think Of Your CDs As Merchandise NOT Music

Music industry analyst Mark Mulligan has written an excellent blog recently about the Japanese music industry which discusses the fact that over 75% of Japan’s music sales are still physical (CD).  This is due to the fact that Japanese CDs contain free gifts and perks include votes for TV talent competitions and to the ability to shake the hand of the artist at a ‘meet and greet’.

japan shake

Buy a CD in Japan and you can get to shake the hand of the band…and more!

Buying multiple copies of a CD will allow you to upgrade to a hug, phonecall, dinner and such, much in the same manner as a Pledgemusic campaign which offers greater perks for larger donors.

What this serves to show is that as an independent artist you should look beyond the CD  as a physical ‘container’ for your music and instead treat it more as band ‘merchandise’.

If your music is available for streaming or on YouTube your fans can listen to all your music for free, so why should they buy a CD?  Well, if your fans buy a CD at a gig, it serves as a souvenir of a memorable night.  On the Merch table you can perhaps bundle a CD with a postcard signed by yourself with the venue name and date etc.  A CD purchase then becomes a ‘memento’.

Here are some other ways buying a CD can get your fans closer to you:

  • Create extensive liner notes.
  • Include a free ticket to an afterparty or a future meet and greet.
  • Include with the CD details of a secret ‘superfan only’ webpage.
  • Include an exclusive piece of killer merch which you can only get when you buy the CD.

Read Mark’s full post here

Got any questions about this post or how you can better market yourself?

Twitter:  @60secondmm