It’s not a surprise these days – the music industry is doing everything they can to get as much money as they can from consumers and give as little as possible to the artists and songwriters.
We don’t really blame the record companies for this — business is business, after all, and there has to be some give-and-take in order to turn a profit these days.
But it’s a new day of music distribution.
Gone are the days when the only way you could listen to a song was to turn on the radio and hope the song played soon, or head to your local record store and buy the album, 8-track, cassette, or CD from the rack. Now, music is available to you wherever you turn — and you can carry your entire music library (including every song you ever heard in your entire life, let alone songs you’ve physically purchased) in the palm of your hand, literally.
Yes, music streaming services are here to stay, along with the monthly or annual subscription fees to go with them.
What, you thought you could listen to any song you wanted to, on demand, for free? Sorry, Charlie — whether it be advertisements in the stream or your one purchased song that’s been uploaded into the cloud for a price, music should always cost you something for the joy of tapping your foot in time.
Historical analysis of music purchasing trends show that the average consumer, when faced with the prospect of purchasing physical albums, had a happy price point of about $10-$15 per 12-song CD or album. In essence, about $1 a song, about the same price that Apple iTunes, Google Play, and the Amazon MP3 store have standardized on.
But here’s the difference, as the study pointed out. People were buying albums for the full price in order to hear a specific song or two. Rarely were people buying an album for all 12 pieces of music. So in essence, the price of a song was really $5 apiece, and you got a selection of crap that you’d never listen to along side of the hit(s) you wanted.
And because of the price of an album, people weren’t going out of their way to buy tons of music. You might find people buying 5 albums a year or so. About $50, let’s say.
There’s a reason that BMG and Columbia Music Club were so popular (12 albums for a penny!).
But today? Streaming services are charging $10 dollars a month, or more… to about $120 a year, minimum, just for the ability to stream songs.
In other words, the music industry is asking you to pay more than twice what people historically have spent in a year on music.
That’s just silly.
So here’s that proposal, courtesy of David Pakman who knows a thing or two about selling music to the masses:
Drop the price for streaming to something more reasonable. Like $50 per year.
Would the record companies lose money at this?
Heck no, says David. They’d make a TON more money as the price instantly becomes not only more affordable, but it makes music streaming more of a commodity. A necessity in the house, like a microwave oven or a cell phone charger would be.
There are many people who have no trouble shelling out $10 a month for streaming. There are more than double that number, it seems, that would be more than happy to offer $5 for the same service.
The record companies should ask themselves if they’d rather sell 10 subscriptions a month at $10 apiece or 25 subscriptions a month at $5 apiece.
We know which side of the fence we’d be leaning on. There’s a reason Wal-Mart is a massive shopping monster — they promise the low price, and they deliver.
Lower prices can work wonders for a company’s bottom line. The music industry should stand up and take notice.