Prince’s New Distribution Model [8:09 pm]
The bundling of a CD and a concert ticket for one price has the music industry buzzing. It allows Prince to sell direct to his audience, cutting out all the middlemen. It also helps push his album up the record charts, the key to getting more radio play, which in turn drives retail sales.
Prince’s album, called ”Musicology,” has earned strong reviews. It debuted at number three in its first week at the end of April, posting sales of 191,000. It held on to the third spot last week even though sales slipped 10 percent to 172,000.
Overall, concert sales accounted for about 18 percent of Prince’s total CD sales over the two weeks, but they appeared to be the key in the second week to Prince’s holding on to third ahead of Diana Krall’s ”The Girl in the Other Room,” which sold 144,000 copies.
[...] While Prince’s business strategy appears to be working, it has a downside for his fans. Anyone wanting to see Prince in concert has to pay for his CD (two of them if a husband and wife go together) whether they want it or not.
Prince also has done a poor job of getting the word out about his bundling experiment. It’s possible many fans bought tickets to a concert and separately purchased the CD, not knowing they were going to get a stripped-down version of the CD at the concert.