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#3.16: The “Books, Music, and Movies” Issue

1> Payment Promotion vs. Copy Prevention
2> They Buy It For The Bonus
3> Buy Now, Get It Later
4> Check It Out: Googlize Yourself

1> Payment Promotion vs. Copy Prevention

The music industry has paid millions to lawyers to fight illegal downloads. Instead, maybe they should have made it easier for consumers to pay for downloaded music. Universal Music is now offering more than 43,000 songs available for download. Consumers can buy single songs for 99 cents or entire albums for $9.99, and they can burn them to a CD. Out of the billions of songs downloaded for free over Napster and its clones, think about how much money the record labels could have made if it was as easy to pay as it was to download. We’re sure many people won’t mind paying a buck for that one special song. If you are investing effort in preventing people from copying your work, maybe you should redirect your efforts to making it easier for them to pay you for it. Next step for Universal — they should add PayPal support so single-track downloads can be a true impulse purchase.

THE LESSON: “Copy prevention” efforts are futile and expensive. Focus on “payment promotion” and make it easier for customers to pay for what they want.

MORE INFO:
http://consumers.umusic.com/home_DMD.html

2> They Buy It For The Bonus

People are buying DVDs like crazy, even those who never considered buying VHS tapes. It seems that bonus content and other freebies are enough to take an OK product in one format and make it a must-own in a new format. HarperCollins recently picked up this lesson at PerfectBound.com, its online e-bookstore, which features downloadable ebooks. Many of their titles are enhanced with “e-book extras” that aren’t available offline, such as author biographies and exclusive interviews. The best part of this strategy is that the bonus material is usually free to the publisher, and it costs nothing to distribute.

THE LESSON: Think about what bonus features you can add to your web site or product that will make a buyer think you’re selling something special.

MORE INFO:
http://us.perfectbound.com

3> Buy Now, Get It Later

Many web sites offer a “wish list” for shoppers who want to select items now that they’d like to buy later. Wouldn’t it be better if you could actually get them to pay you in advance for those future purchases? Two Internet merchants, NetFlix (DVDs) and BooksOnTape.com (books on tape) mail you your rentals, which you send back in a pre-paid envelope when you are finished. They let you pre-select your wish list of future rentals, which are automatically mailed to you when your previous rental is returned. At NetFlix, $19.95 per month lets you have up to three videos out at once. As soon as they get one returned, your next one is mailed to you automatically. BooksOnTape lets you pay for multiple rentals at once, and they mail them on dates you specify. In both cases, the merchant gets paid right away; the consumer gets entertainment when they need it.

THE LESSON: Take the order now. If a shopper is ready to buy, take their money and deliver the product when they want it.

MORE INFO:
http://www.netflix.com
http://www.booksontape.com

4> Check It Out: Googlize Yourself

Go to Googlism.com and find out exactly what Google thinks of you. We can’t explain it — just try it and you’ll see! Good fun.

MORE INFO:
http://www.googlism.com

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