The New Free (or Free is So Done)

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From a marketing perspective, free music may already be overdone.

Seth Godin writes:
The first time a previously expensive good or service is made free, we’re drawn to it precisely because of the freeness. The fifth time or tenth time, not so much.
On value in music and "the new free", Kate at Outlandos Music writes:
Things to think about:
  1. What’s the effectiveness of your free? To lure in new fans? To solidify current fans?
  2. What’s the strategy of your free? Is your free creative? Why do I want it over someone else’s?
  3. What’s the bottom line of your free? To get me to pay for something else? Free can’t be JUST free anymore. And how the hell can you beat free?
So that’s my question: What’s the new free? Thinking that the answer is in fact the opposite of free. The complete opposite. Fucking expensive.

Take the new food for example (thanks Erik!). $5 Kashi anyone? $4 local, farm-raised, cage-free eggs? $8 Pom Wonderful? $5 rice milk? Are we (me included) out of our minds? Perhaps. But clearly, somehow those foodies did it. We’re willing to pay ridiculously high prices for incredible quality. What’s more is we often drive way out of our way to get it (for most of us, Whole Foods, etc. isn’t usually down the road). Why? We value life for one, fueling our bodies with the best we can to feel healthy, younger, whatever. But also it’s just plain delicious, so there’s definitely an aesthetic association. And for sure, it’s COOL. I love walking into Whole Foods with my eco-conscious shopping basket and looking at all the pretty colors and all the pretty people. I do. It’s a group I want to be long to. But the best part is getting home, unpacking everything, unwrapping and putting it away. I love touching it. I love how it looks in the refrigerator and on the shelves. It looks nice.

Hmmmmm…. what else makes you feel good, feeds the senses, makes you willing to make an effort to get it, makes you feel cool and the need for inclusion? YOUR FAVORITE BAND.

So what’s missing? Well, if it’s digital, you can’t TOUCH it. And that’s a bummer. There’s a lot of pleasure out of simply owning something, holding it. Is that the missing element? Making music TACTILE again?

I think so. And apparently Tim Easton does as well. Bless him.

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