Thursday, November 2, 2017

Why DIY Musicians Need To Be Pressing Vinyl | Music Think Tank

Vinyl records are on a 25-year sales high. It’s projected that 40 million units will be sold in 2017 alone. That makes it the first time it’s come close to the 1 billion benchmark this millennium. With the death of many music heavyweights this year and the availability of budget record players the combination of nostalgia and low barrier to entry is leading to many taking the leap back into vinyl. 

So what does this mean for the DIY musician?

At times it can seem impossible to compete with the sea of musicians on streaming services such as Spotify and YouTube. You can spend an entire year working on a record only to see 5 sales from iTunes (3 of which were from your mom).

There are plenty of internet marketing courses that promise to help turn things around, but what happens when everyone is taking the exact same courses?

Vinyl may be the answer. 

While big artists are picking up on the trend (Daft Punk sold 19,000 copies at $40 each during their first week of an album release) it doesn’t mean you can’t still differentiate yourself from the crowd. 

With the rise in popularity, a number of different vinyl pressing services have popped up. These services offer short runs of small bathes. Keep in mind that there is usually at least a 50 day lead time.

Selling vinyl on your band website and at your shows is another revenue stream that provides extra value to your fans. You’re giving your fans access to a rich user experience where listening to the album is an experience rather than an afterthought. 

Jonathan Linaberry from The Bones of J.R. Jones recently pressed his album for $5.60 and is selling them at his shows for $15. If all albums sell it amounts to roughly $4,700 in profit. Not a bad additional revenue stream. 

Vinyl listeners aren’t just old-timers who crave the old days. They are young, trend-following millennials who want to show off their music collection at their dinner parties.

Bottom line, if you’re a DIY musician you’re throwing money down the drain if you’re not pressing your records. 


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