I’ve received this e-mail from Lamb, one of my favorite bands, a few hours ago. It’s the right moment since I’m currently analyzing Digital Music ecosystem through DiCoDE. Here is an extract: In the age-old tradition of art we’re asking for your sponsorship so we don’t have to sign our souls away to some major corporation. By pre-ordering ’5′ you will be helping to make it happen. In return you will get a special limited edition release of the record with exclusive artwork in a hardback book version. You will also get regular blogs and updates on how the record’s going and, upon registering, you’ll get a special preview version of one of the songs “She Walks” fresh off the press. Of course, since you’ll be supporting the making of the record, you’ll also get a name credit in the artwork and if you’re amongst the first 250 you’ll get a super-limited edition, signed print we think you’ll love.
This illustrates perfectly the big trend in digital music: record companies don’t bring value to the process anymore, artists want to reclaim relationship with their fans and give them more than plastic music, band lifecycle includes now split(s) and come back(s) and the business model is totally different: crowd-funded, live performance-focussed with value coming from the experience rather than the recorded music (packaging, live experience…).
It’s funny because I thought about such a model for DiCoDE (and still do), having a few early adopter rewarded for their faith with a limited edition of the book. What I currently have in mind is submitting a beta version of the book to a few people (like 20) who believed in me or inspired me until now and gather their feedback for the final version. And maybe follow Carole‘s advice: putting people’s photo in your book will engage them and they will help you communicating around it.