What should you be offering?

English: A very dusty/scratched vinyl record b...
English: A very dusty/scratched vinyl record being played. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Vinyl & cassettes look cool and can really pop out to people when they see them. I say be smart about using them.

Here's an example of how Rise Records label head Craig Ericson has fashioned himself as a shrewd music industry outsider, rethought what they thought at first was the "cheap" option.

When he noticed the digital download cards that the label sent out with its vinyl orders were costing a penny more to produce than CDs, Ericson nixed the cards and started adding CDs to the orders instead, usually charging just $15 for the bundle. "They know their market better than anyone in the world and they don't waste time or money,"

Two things there I like.

One, a digital option that comes with it, the download card.

This is smart because not only are you adding value to the record, not making them transfer it themselves but you can ask for their email when they get the download. Now you can connect with them later about new releases.

Amazon even started doing the Amazon digital Autorip option with a CD purchase.

And Bandcamp lets you enable this method with each CD or physical item.

And two, the bundled option.

If you want me to buy a vinyl record, why not make it more interesting?
Getting stickers, a poster, a CD with such a visually pretty thing makes it a far more cool thing to get.

YouTube streaming

Rise Records has also made its entire catalog available to stream for free with ads on YouTube.

says Ericson. "We've been aggressive about getting our music out there where it can be heard hassle-free."

You may wonder what good does that do me?

This is a way to adapt as an indie musician yourself. You're concerned about free downloads but will let listeners stream songs before they buy, why not get ad-revenue for each listen? Sign up for a contentID account on youTube.

Reference: Rise Records, Oregon's Indie Metal Giant, and Its Surprising Success | Billboard

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