Direct-to-Fan Distribution

Direct-to-Fan Distribution

There was no single blow that killed the record industry’s business model, but it never recovered once artists gained the capability to sell and distribute their own music and content online.

Though the internet has opened the doors wide open, up until recently it still has been difficult for  musicians who weren’t tech-savvy to sell their music directly to the fan – that is, without a middle man. Unless your paid for a developer to have your website set up for sales, with a back-end area for fans to purchase and download tracks, you had to rely on channels like iTunes to take care of the distribution process.

While it’s still absolutely necessary to have your music available on iTunes due to its convenience and huge user base, it’s also important to remember that the profits you receive from them are split and that gathering sales data (and getting your check) takes time. If you think about it, selling a digital file shouldn’t be that hard to do.

Fortunately, services have popped up that offer the artist the ability to sell tracks directly from their websites and social networking pages with ease. Nimbit jumped on the scene a few months back, and more recently ReverbNation announced a partnership with Audiolife to offer a similar service.

With these services and others like them, artists have a direct line to potential buyers and fans have a new option for purchasing music directly from the artist. And setting this system up is becoming easier to implement.

What does this mean for you, the artist? It means you can focus your marketing efforts on getting people to your website, and then take advantage of the opportunity to sell tracks right there and then.

With one less hoop for the fan to jump through, artists should see an increase in download sales – and because there’s no middleman, an increase in profits as well.

–Eric Hebert

Eric Hebert is CEO of Evolvor Media and teaches musicians and artists how to market and distribute their work through the revolutionary Label 2.0, a interactive learning community of do-it-yourself independent musicians. Visit the blog of evolvor.com to keep up to date on the ever-changing digital music scene.