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Monday, January 16, 2006
The Internet, Deflationary Effect – Music Stores - Its Just The Beginning
USA Today ran a story about U.S. music album sales. Get this: 2005 album sales were down 7% from the previous year while digital downloads of music doubled! U.S. album sales were down about 7% as 2005 drew to a close, but the budding market for music downloads, which more than doubled over last year, helped narrow the revenue gap. The article goes on to note that this isn’t particularly bad news for recording companies, but “it doesn’t bode well for music retailers.” Combined, album and singles sales fell about 8% over the same time last year. More than 95% of music is sold in CD format. Downloaded tracks from online retailers soared to 332.7 million this year, compared with 134.2 million in 2004, an increase of 148%. Download sales increased by 350% over the prior year. Michael Hyatt predicts, a big enough slice of the book reading public will opt for digital delivery and that will have a significant, disruptive effect on the entire industry. As he sees it, 5-10 percent reduction in sales would wreak havoc. It’s already happening with newspapers and magazines. In the online world through comparison shopping, targeted advertising, promotional schemes, personalization and preference patterns all provide unique value that can potentially drive offline sale as well quite significantly. Add mobile technologies and online world - the combination can really create deep impact in the offline world.
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