Often, business owners can be a little single-minded in terms of their approach and strategy. It is easy to understand how this happens, as entrepreneurs become accustomed to the unique mechanisms of their own business and the industry in which it operates. As a result of this, even experienced business owners can ignore the need for change and the importance of looking towards other industries for inspiration.
This requires variable degrees of analysis and lateral thinking, as not all lessons can be taken and directly applied to an alternative industry. Instead, entrepreneurs must consider these lessons in the context of their own market, focusing on the underlying values that will impact on their business. One of the best examples is provided by the modern music market, as while this may be a niche sector is holds a number of integral marketing lessons for businesses with a desire to succeed on 2015.
The 3 Key Marketing Lessons that Business Owners can learn from the Music Industry
These marketing lessons are diverse in their nature, and can be applied across multiple business types and market sectors. Here are three of the most popular and relevant in the contemporary business age: –
Develop a Freemium Business Model that Empower consumers
Trust is a key element in modern business, and this makes sense when you consider the proliferation of the freemium business model. This requires a commitment from entrepreneurs, who must showcase faith in their products and be willing to forego short-term gains in the pursuit of long-term profitability. Modern musicians have been forced to follow this path thanks to evolution in their sector, while the most successful have embraced these changes and used them to their adventure.
According to a recent Ticketbis.net case study, global music sales fell from $14.6 billion to $7 million between 1999 and 2013. This was largely a result of the digital download market, while the rise of video streaming has also made music content more accessible than ever before. So while artists now receive far lower royalties from streaming sites such as Spotify, intelligent musicians such as Ed Sheeran have negated this by marketing their work to a larger, global audience and empowering listeners to engage with his output.
This is something that modern (and small) business owners should learn from, as they focus on the long-term positioning and marketing of their product rather than driving higher, short-term sales volumes.
Collaborate with Relevant and Compatible firms
Collaboration is one of the most underrated words in marketing, and yet it is crucial towards developing productive and mutually beneficial partnerships. This is something that musicians are particularly adept at, however, as many artists have worked hard to align their work with compatible brands in fashion, film and television. Take Florence Welch (from Florence and the Machines), for example, who has aggressively positioned her music with multiple partners and across various media platforms.
This is a lesson that small and independent firms would do well to heed, as it provides low-cost and effective mediums through which they can reach new customers. By partnering with service providers that can help to reduce operational costs, entrepreneurs can invest in a higher marketing spend. By identifying viable companies with a similar philosophy, it may be possible to pool resources and create multipurpose campaigns.
Create Integrated Campaigns across both on and offline channels
While it is easy to become consumed with all things digital in the modern age, this limits the number of channels through which you can target customers. Musicians are more aware of this than anyone, which is why so many create diverse, multi-channel campaigns that promote their work both on and offline. Touring plays a pivotal role in this, as this provides listeners with an opportunity to engage with their favourite artists and promotes work in an organic, interactive setting.
Business owners must also look to achieve this, as they look to create a seamless campaign that includes multiple channels. So in addition to building an optimised website and educational blog, for example, they should also look to promote their product or service through physical demonstrations and trade shows. This type of interaction can also be shared online, while it provides brands with a chance to engage their customers directly in communication.