Monday, August 22, 2005

The Chumbawamba Factor

Pitchfork has a great feature on BigChampagne and how the music industry tracks file sharing to create marketing strategy.
BigChampange didn't promise to save the industry, but they offered to help the labels look past what they lost in sales and see what they had gained in raw information. By watching what millions of people were sharing, trading, and actively searching for, they collected reams of data that in turn fed artist development and marketing plans.
Also of note is their theory on the decline of music industry profits... today's title:
"Chumbawamba sold a lot of records, and every single one of them ended up in a milkcrate at a yard sale, six months after it was purchased. And what we told [the record labels] is, 'Look, you had a great long run of business essentially built on regrettable impulse buys,'" says Garland. "'That was a great business, make no mistake. You owed much of your success to that. But it engendered a lot of cumulative ill-will with the customer.'"
BigChampagne tracks traded files, artists listed in MYSpace, music libraries , and compiles them with demographic data, to look for possible ty-ins, such a first person shooter game for particular set of rap fans. It's great read to see how the music industry has been learning from the devil as much as fighting it.

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