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Prince's Innovative Music Marketing

Prince just released his 473rd CD titled "Planet Earth." The way it was released is innovative. Prince attached a copy of his new album to every issue of London's "Mail on Sunday" on July 15, so that everyone who bought the paper also picked up a copy of "Planet Earth."

As can be expected, music retailers in the U.K. were not so pleased about this and in retaliation, they've decided not to sell the new album. I guess that would be bad if actual album sales revenue mattered. A few years ago Prince changed his name to a symbol in protest of his label, Warner Bros, which would not allow him to manage and distribute his music the way he wanted.

Prince went indie, deciding to manage his own development and distribution, and the results speak for themselves. Prince is able to get his music into hands and still make a living! He's launched a number of albums since then, including Musicology, which sparked a controversy because it ended up in the top 10 for a number of consecutive weeks due to the genius marketing idea that everyone who purchased a ticket to see Prince live also received a copy of the CD. The inevitable sales appeared to put Prince back into the mainstream!

In an industry that is continually complaining that they cannot make money anymore, there is a ray of light that shines from artists such as Prince. These artists are all independent, in some cases, working with labels only as a source of distribution, but they use digital media and the numerous tools at their disposal to create music in an efficient manner. It allows them to make a living and they seem to enjoy concentrating on their music.

Visit www.3121.com to see what Prince is up to.

SOURCE: OnlineSpin, MediaPost Publications www.mediapost.com


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