Surprises

by Mike Masnick


Filed Under:
business models, music

Companies:
radiohead



Radiohead Tells Fans To Name Their Own Price For Latest Album Downloads; Gives Them A Reason To Pay

from the new-business-models dept

The band Radiohead is apparently coming out with a new album; the first after its original record deal was completed. It appears that, like many other musicians, they're realizing that the traditional recording industry business model doesn't quite make sense for them. While there was some buzz about an apparent hoax website about the band's new album, it turns out the real thing is a bit more interesting. That's because Radiohead is doing two smart things. It's telling fans they can name their own price for digital downloads. You just pay the band however much you think the downloads are worth and they'll be happy. But that's not all (though, that's what most folks are focused on). Rather than just offering up the content, they're also trying to give people a reason to actually buy something else. In this case, it's a "discbox," which will include the new album on both CD and vinyl, as well as an additional CD of seven extra songs and photos, artwork and lyrics. The whole thing will be packaged in a nice container. In other words, the band is following in the footsteps of folks like Trent Reznor, in realizing that the music is promotional for other stuff -- and you can still sell stuff if you make it worthwhile. In this case, Radiohead isn't really selling the "music." After all, you can get that for free. They're selling the full collection of stuff that comes with the music. Funny how it's the musicians, and not the record labels, who seem to realize that adding value and getting people to pay for it is a business model that beats suing fans.

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  1. identicon
    maths, 1 Oct 2007 @ 4:39am

    Labels facing A-list artist defections

    With Trent Reznor also recently announcing that once Nine Inch Nails fulfill their Universal commitments, they will be selling their albums direct to fans from their websites, this signifies a sea-change in distribution methods by A-list artists. Of course this is not an option for every band, but if all the superstar-bands that actually benefited from the old system to get to where they are, are now subsequently deciding to go totally indie where are the major labels going to find the mega-revenues that used to subsidize the rest of the money-losing acts in their stable? More details here: http://www.music2dot0.com/archives/47

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