by Mike Masnick
Mon, Dec 28th 2009 12:51pm
Dear major record labels: when we suggested you learn how to embrace "free" in your marketing and promotions, this isn't quite what we meant. Consumerist points out that Interscope (part of Universal Music) has put together a promotion with Best Buy, whereby if you buy a CD from certain Interscope artists, you get a free copy of the software Tweetdeck. Well, that's nice... other than the fact that Tweetdeck is already free. Great deal! Now, to be fair, the copy of Tweetdeck you get is a special "customized" version that automatically has you following 16 Interscope artists (even if you only bought a CD from one of them). Of course, you could also just follow any of those artists yourself (again, for free), so it's not quite clear what the promotion is. But, they sure seem to suggest it's a big deal in the Best Buy newspaper ad:
Now, I guess, to some extent, we should note that it's a good thing that a major record label is admitting publicly that "free" can act as a good promotion -- so kudos to Interscope for taking that big step. It's also nice to see Interscope recognize that an infinite good (software) can potentially help sell more scarce goods (CDs). But, on the whole, it definitely seems like this promotion could have been handled a lot better. Pumping up the "free" aspect of something that's already free just doesn't seem that compelling.
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