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
    Hulser, 1 Oct 2007 @ 9:32am

    Re:

    schmengie said...
    "the music is the goal, not the money"
    "you don't make music to sell oven mitts. you sell oven mitts to make music."

    If this is your attitude, then there shouldn't be a problem with Radiohead's pay-what-you-think-it's-worth model. But if you want to be able to make music for a living instead of slaving away at Acme Oven Mitts all day, then maybe work something out to sell branded t-shirt, posters, and uh...oven mitts.

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