We’ve been discussing “The Video Experience,” whereas every piece of video content that you market online should create an experience for the viewer and the audience that you’re aiming for. This lesson not only applies to video, but can be applied to product marketing as well.
On Saturday, April 19th, an event was held that has become a holiday for music enthusiasts everywhere: Record Store Day.
Record Store Day is an event that takes place every spring at record shops across the globe. It’s purpose is to celebrate music culture, support local record shops, and, arguably most importantly, the importance of the physical music medium, especially vinyl records.
You might be thinking “Who still buys vinyl records?” The answer might surprise you. Sales on vinyl records are tallied every year during record store day weekend, and vinyl record sales in 2012 were higher than they’ve been in over 20 years. Even in the world of digital music we live in, vinyl records and their collectors have created a culture all their own over the past decade, not only due to collectors’ enthusiasm, but also due to the ever-expanding sampling culture of modern hip-hop and electronic beat music.
The resurgence of vinyl records is confusing to some, but if you take the time to really analyze why vinyl records have become so popular amongst music advocates, you’ll learn that a big portion has to do with experiential marketing.
I’ve been collecting vinyl for about 5 years now, and many ask me why. For me, and potentially many other collectors, purchasing records creates an experience for us.
I’ll set the scene: It’s Tuesday (the industry standard release day for music and other media). The latest record from one of my favorite artists has just been released, and I’m ecstatic to hear the new dynamics that the artist has explored in their most recent work. You’d think that my first action would be to find a digital version, either through iTunes, Amazon, or other digital music manufacturers, since this is the most efficient medium of hearing what I want to hear. For me, I’m thinking about when I can make it to my local record shop and pick up a copy.
Many would argue that this is wasted gas, wasted money on a dead medium, and overall, just worthless. Why would you want a vinyl copy when you can get the files at the click of a mouse? This is where the experiential side of things comes into play.
For me, buying a new record the day it is released is truly an experience.
You drive to your favorite local record shop (for me, UHF Records in Royal Oak!). You dig through the bins to find the new record, and once you find it, there’s a feeling of satisfaction no digital file can ever replicate.
You finish your transaction and anxiously await your return home to experience this new album. You get home, open the packaging, study the artwork and the design, and read through the production credits, lyric books, and any other included paperwork that may be included in the record. Then, you put the record on to hear for the first time.
There’s a special feeling you get when you listen to a brand new record. The full, warm quality of the analog transcription slowly grazed by a fresh needle. It’s a really special experience for music enthusiasts.
This is why vinyl records are still so special to so many people. Having a tangible, full canvas of a favorite record provides a sense of pride and joy that a digital file just can’t provide. This is why, I believe, vinyl records will stand the test of time.
Sure, you can get any album you want by means of digital download. Aside from nit-picky quality differences, the product of the album remains the same. It’s the experience of going to the record store, opening a new record, discovering it’s design and artwork, etc. that leads music enthusiasts to purchasing a physical copy of an album they love, as opposed to just having the files stored away on your computer.
This is a very clear example of experiential marketing. If vinyl records didn’t create the experience they do, everyone would be buying digital music. But the vinyl record industry is continuing to expand and evolve, and that shows how meaningful this medium of marketing a product can be, and how important experience truly is to the world of product marketing.
photo credit: IMG_5368 Speed tracker #vinyl #record #player #turntable via photopin (license)