Selling Music on the Internet - Good or Bad?
is director of Berklee Music, in the United
States. He beleives that the music industry
and the recording industry will change
radically over the next few years. He
believes that the new media will eliminate
traditional companies of the recording
Even though I
agree that the way music will be sold and
distributed to the end user will suffer
changes, I think that musicians will become
more anonymous instead of becoming household
names and will suffer financially in the
who think recording companies are already
abusing on the cashing in on their talent,
they should wait for the internet to go into
companies will continue recording and
selling physical products (like CDs) and at
the same time will have these products in
digital format on the internet (like Apple)
with the same sound quality, MP3, Ogg Vorbis
and any other type of musical archive that
comes along. This way the companies will
capture both markets, physical and digital.
Of course the
companies will have to reduce the number of
workers employed in the distribution of the
companies today (CD Baby etc.), store
independent music on their servers ready to
be sold. Of course with a platform the size
of the internet and specialized programs,
raises the chance of anyone recording their
own compositions in their own home on their
computer and upload this music to the net.
So be quick! Because, while the number of "musicians"
is rising, the consumer market is stable, or,
at least is growing at a slower pace.
I beleive the
internet will reach a saturation point where
there will be more music (and a lot of it
bad) than the market can hold.
If the number
of musicians rises, the competition will
rise also, but not for the resale companies!
For each music they sell they receive a
percentage. If they sell my music, or your
music, for the company it's not important,
the companys' percentage is guaranteed.
musicians that will need to divide the cake
into thinner slices simply because of
volume. They will also become less important
for the companies because of the exaggerated
numbers. When the supply rises, the price
falls starting a good old vicious circle.
Imagine if every CD recorded throughout the
whole of time were put into one shop in your
towns' high street. Think of the pandemonium
of you searching for a good song in a
certain musical style, so many names, so
many songs and the majority low quality.
Would you listen to all of the CDs in the
shop? Would you really have time to do this?
An example that could show this well is when
you search on Google. How many pages result
from your search? Millions. How many pages
would you visit? I imagine two or three, or
until you find the specific information that
you were looking for. How many pages will
internet will facilitate access in delivery
terms of an online purchase, but songs will
have to compete with billions of others
within their niche, not to mention
I believe that
to maintain their market position, the major
recording companies need to offer nothing
more than excellent quality in the
production of digital music as their
differential and at the same time make their
artists more accessible physically to the
public to reinforce the brand (the name of
In the world
of physical CDs, an artist would conquer a
physical area of the market (Europe, United
States etc.) and after look for secondary
markets (those that pay less) using the
marketing of the recording company. The
recording companies need to act faster
because the market is in constant movement
and is changing conform technology tools
like the internet.
In the future
with even more movement of the internet, the
new artist will be distanced even more from
the consumer and will be more responsible
for their communication between their
product and the end user (the listener)
through blogs, websites, forums and
conference calls in a unique global market.
Will it be
that this new world will reduce the
personality of the artist? Will it be that
with this new media, instrumentalists will
become a thing of the past? Will it be that
the consumer will behave in a totally
different way than they do today?
Of course with
new systems there will be casualties.
History has shown who won (and who lost!)
when new concepts entered into the
commercial market. Remember the different
types of video tapes (VHS e Beta Max), 8
track cartridges, 12" DVDs? Companies like
Sinclair and Laker Airways are things of the
past after they were daring enough to bring
new concepts and ideas to the market.
would like to think that the listener still
likes to watch a good musical show with real
instruments and in the future the consumer
would still like to visit their favourite
shop in their town to buy a music product in
the form of a CD.
Steve Allen is consultant and music
Author of "Marketing Your Music – Success
Strategies", "Personal Management in the
Music Industry" and "Street Teams – Expand
your Fan Base"
You may copy this article
and post it in your site, without onus, as
long as you keep the due credits for the
author and source intact, with an active
visible link, below the text to the url: