Re: Music Business Law

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A marketing Plan- A major marketing campaign can cost $1,000,000 or more. Labels feel that they are doing good if 20% of their releases are profitable. Upwards of 200 records are released every month just by major labels in the United States. These figures do not include independent labels. Promotion efforts are normally done by a person at the vice-president level. There is normally a concept in which the product will be exploited. The promotion concept is headed up by the artist’s manager, producer, head of merchandising, art director, head of promotion and publicity (optional).

After the creation of the concept:

-Marketing team starts to sketch
-Photographer will start shooting film
-Stuff is brought together

-Point of Purchase merchandise is popular but expensive. This is advertisements at the retail stores and other places of purchase. Strengths Weaknesses Opportunities Threats (SWOT) determines what advertising will be profitable.

Record Promotion:

-Radio- is the single most important way to promote new music. Program directors are in charge of deciding what songs are played. Job of promoter is to get the program director to play their music. There are fewer and fewer program directors as radio stations started having syndicated programs and as bigger stations buy smaller stations. Well versed promoters focus their efforts on stations that report to Billboard and other charting organizations. If a song can get played on these stations it has a chance of showing up on one or more charts. This make it easier for a promoter to get songs on stations. Video has become less important. Promoters mail out promo copies of cds and also do follow ups with the stations they send cds to. Club promotion is more popular for EDM and hip-hop and electronica fields especially for DJ’s have them played in their mixes. Vjs are also important in promotion. There is usually one campaign manager.

Publicity- is usually separate from the advertising department. They are in charge of reviews, news, and press releases.

Advertising- this includes print, broadcasting, point-of-sale and direct mail. Print advertising includes newspapers and magazines. There are type of advertisement. These types are institutional which is geared towards the product or cooperative with also involves the retailer. In cooperative ads sometimes the cost of the advertisement is split. Record labels can also pay for cooperative adds to get better prices and placement in stores. Until 2000 Major labels used Minimum Advertising Pricing to restrict prices for recordings. Policy protected smaller merchants from larger merchants. Many times a retail store such as Sweetwater won’t print the prices of certain gear and it is because they signed a MAP agreement and aren’t allowed to advertise below a certain price. Digidesign and Adams monitors are companies that require these sort of contracts.

International sales can account for more than one-half of revenue so international promotion is important. Piracy is a problem and there is a strong incentive for fans to illegally download an album so releasing at the same time in the US and foreign markets can help reduce piracy problems.

Popular Foreign markets are- Netherlands, the UK, Germany and France. For Africa, South Africa is the biggest market, Asian markets include Japan, China, and India.

Distributors have to balance the supply of goods between foreign and national markets. Pricing wars often occurs. There is a balance between over-supply and under-supply. Major labels have affiliated distribution companies, and these companies normally only work with their affiliated company. Independent Distribution companies generally handle the bulk of the independent labels, and many of these companies also offer promotion.