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Retail tunes

Retail

Selling 'in-house' music may be profitable for a host of companies that entertain customers in settings where background music is accepted and often even welcomed.

Selling their ‘own’ music may be profitable for a host of companies that entertain customers in settings where background music is accepted and often even welcomed

With the risk of Springwise contributing to a Starbucks overload, consider the following successful foray into the music industry: the coffee giant, which entertains patrons with java and jazzy tunes, has made music a fixed part of its products for sale. Besides pushing new artists like Norah Jones, the company will release 16 new compilation CDs this year, put together by Hear Music, the San Francisco boutique music retailer which got bought by Starbucks in 1999. Other retail chains selling their own CDs, as heard in their stores, are Pottery Barn, Banana Republic and Victoria’s Secret (source: WSJ). The real catch here is that these stores reach a mature audience that may have less time and options to check out new or obscure artists, or get fanatical about mixing together their own compilations. They’re also less averse to paying for CDs, having the money to do so, and having grown up before everything-for-free became the norm. Editing, compiling and selling their ‘own’ music may be profitable for a host of companies that entertain customers in settings where background music is accepted and often even welcomed. And as this will be anything but core-business more often than not, it’s a great chance for music stores to strike deals with these chains and provide them with the merchandise. Which makes it a typical case of figuring out in what new ways you can actually reach your end-users. There’s money in alternative distribution channels!

Website: www.starbucks.com/hearmusic/artistschoice/default.asp

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