Bands Take Pay What You Want To Merch… And It Works Great
from the business-models-that-work dept
While at the Leadership Music Digital Summit last week, I got into a fantastic conversation with Dave Allen, perhaps most well known for being in the hugely influential band Gang of Four. In fact, the reason I missed the panel discussion about ISPs teaming up with the RIAA was because the conversation with Dave was so fascinating. I hope to talk to him some more in the future as well, but he’s a musician (who now helps other musicians) who really seems to understand the new business models that are out there.
Part of what we talked about concerned an experiment, where he convinced a few bands to stop offering set pricing on all of their merch, and instead, told them to ask each buyer what they wanted to pay. The bands that have tried this found that this made fans much happier. Many fans paid more than list price (even when told the “recommended price”) because they really wanted to support the band. Other fans, who wouldn’t have been able to afford the merch at the list price, came away much happier because they were able to afford stuff. Those fans become committed lifelong fans who are much more willing to spend more money in the future as well.
A few more bands have been taking Dave up on the challenge to try this model, and Ben Taylor (son of James Taylor and Carly Simon) recently tested it out and found that he made a lot more money doing things that way.
We took in well over $1000 in CD sales, double what we would on an average night. We normally sell 3 Full Lengths at $15 each and an EP at $5.
We sold a total of 84 CD?s averaging almost $12 per CD!
Last night we were in Jackson Hole, the trend continued, proving another good night. Where we sold 48 CD?s and averaged almost $11 a CD.
We are moving more product than we normally would and in average making more than what our CD were to sell on iTunes or a record store.