WHY SOME ALBUMS FAIL COMMERCIALLY
In my opinion, these are some of the reasons why some albums fail commercially.
2017 is already on a wild start. And I must tell you music is very awesome. And as music gets heated up, artist are on their way to disrupt the system. Mix tapes, EPs and Albums are on their way. Some have started setting their release dates and some have started releasing some.
But that’s where they fall short. Ghanaians and Africans (apart from South Africa) have a thing for NOT buying albums even from their favorite artists. You hear many complaints from the fans on common factors which have been repeated over and over by these artists. Today I’m going to tell you why Albums tend to fail in the market.
In business, you are thought factors in profit-making. When the product is good and the price is very affordable, one is bound to make more profit. It runs everywhere even in the music business. A classic album from Beyonce or Justin Beiber is from $10-20 on iTunes. Cheap huh?
And because of the price, they are able to sell over 100,000 copies in months. That’s business. And this number gives them from $1-2 million and that’s for hundred thousand copies. People tend to compare the dollar rate to cedis but let’s deal with value.
If this amount is able to come from just sales, imagine how much they would be making from royalties, publishing, licensing, performing and touring. LET THAT MARINATE FOR A WHILE.
Another factor worth explaining. The main reason for promotion is to create a strong awareness to keep fans on their toes. If the promotion process goes wrong, one is bound to fail miserably. An artist’s manager is supposed to secure airtime for the artist. And the artist needs to make sure he uses his or her airtime appropriately. The best promotion platform is the blog.
Using bloggers to promote you album is the best ways today. Even the bigger names in the world use bloggers. Their job is to ease the stress of promotion. Use that effectively and make us earn something, lol.
African music of today is filled with predictability. When you expect an album from an artist, you already know what this project will be like even before it starts. Sometimes one needs to give the fans something to look up to. The production credits shouldn’t be the same.
The features should be surprising and the genres should change. An artist releases the promotion single and we are already bored. How can I spend my hard-earned money to buy an easily predictable album. We need timelessness not completely trendy.
Investment in this context means two things; the money you place into making the album/ Mixtape and how buyers feels when they make an investment in purchasing. As an artist, you can work on budget if you have a smart team.
But generally, to make a perfectly crafted album, one needs to make a huge investment to reap big. These budgets need to cover many aspects here including production, features, writers, videos, promotion and probably contracts.
When one draws a very good budget on his project, he tends to work hard and more effectively. Stakes are high and so are benefits. Second has to do with whether the fans choose to invest their monies in purchasing your project. I for once won’t spend my cash to buy a poorly produced album and a feeling you would too.
BAD COVER ART:
One thing I really stress on is aesthetics. When it comes to overall quality, the art play a vital role here. In USA, artists put in much money on cover arts. Example is Kelechi, a hip hop artist who budgeted $6,000 on cover arts. Surveys even show that the beauty of cover arts boosts the album sales due to attractiveness.
If your cover art is able to speak to the masses, one is sure to make a lasting impression. Nb: the Grammy awards has a category for best art and packaging so it actually matters to the high authority in music.
Last would be the timing process. Labels tend to release albums without checking the “music season”. A music season is a period where genres tend to blossom in. Usually September to December is more heated so up tempo based artists tend to sell more.
January to April is for slow jammed music. While May to August is for mid tempo based songs. Find your style or theme and use this calendar. Also have a time gap between you releases. Some tend to release projects every year due to his or her market. Some tend to go for more than 2 years. All has to do with the timelessness of the music. Use this wisely.
So here you have it. Music in Ghana needs to reach to higher heights. We need to go back to the days when good songs were and are able to create bigger buzzes. Trendy music is good but not for an album. Long live Ghanaian music.
PS: my personal blog is www.akwesiosei.wordpress.com