"In other words, almost nobody is listening. You can spend all that time in the studio, but no matter how great the product, not only do most people not care, they’re not even aware of what you’re doing.
Oh, you could take an ad in a targeted publication. But that’s just awareness, you can’t hear the music in a print ad. And the elder audience is used to being turned on by the radio, which they no longer listen to. And the younger audience is used to being turned on by their buddies. So what’s going on in the so-called mainstream is really the sideshow. And the mainstream is so complicated, so full of so many elements, that it’s almost indecipherable. Or, to put it another way, maybe there just isn’t a mainstream."
Reading this made me think of my recent hit-making rant. As Rich points out, what I was really ranting about were distribution strategies. But in the media model, distribution is everything - distribution makes the hit.
In the online world, distribution begins pretty much at one place. Google aggregates the audience where they then re-direct people to their ultimate online destination. Page Rank and SEM, its paid equivalent, are the hit-makers.
But who's the hit-maker for music? It used to be radio, influential magazines, newspapers, television, etc. But we all know these institutions are losing their reach and, therefore, their capability to influence.
Ironically, it seems like it should be easier to create hits today. Music used to have a distributed model where to actually buy it, people had to get into their car and drive to any one of the many places across the country that sold it. Not anymore. Access to the single point of sale - the I tunes music store - is now actually built into the player. As a result, there a distributed audience all going to the same place for the purposes of buying music. Shouldn't it be easier to build consensus, i.e. a hit, there?
In this regard, hasn't Apple has created a really effective vertical search site? All that's missing is the hit-making algorithm. Jobs Rank...kinda catchy....