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Monday, December 23, 2013

How Beyoncé Has Created A Competitive Advantage in the Music Industry

Beyoncé has created a competitive advantage that cannot be denied

I share the footage below because I really like what Beyoncé has done with this album.. The non-conventional-minimal-fanfare release, the underlying feminist messaging, mandating that the full body of work be consumed as opposed to releasing singles, the visual aspect for each song.. everything.

While it's true that only a few mega-stars could pull something like this off, it took guts, innovativeness and forward-thinking to step outside of the box to create content that was so personal and authentic and to develop a distribution strategy that deeply resonated with fans across the globe and compelled them to purchase.

To-date BEYONCÈ has sold nearly a million copies worldwide, 10 days after its December 13th release.

I have been interested in the music industry since 2007 and at that time everything was just going haywire because of digital downloading and file sharing. The industry and record labels were hemorrhaging money. No one had any idea where the industry would go from there.

Other than some interesting strategic marketing partnerships such as the Jay-Z/ Samsung deal, I have not seen any bold moves to accommodate the loss of revenue from digital downloading and file sharing (other than stepping up tour dates and live appearances, which requires significantly more investment in time and money and 360-deals which most artists are not keen on).

Here Beyoncé has added value to her content by capitalizing on relationships with iTunes and YouTube, the two biggest players in the music industry, to give her BeyHive (Beyoncé's tribe of fans) a highly differentiated album at a price point that allowed for a high level of consumer surplus or perceived benefit. With this album Beyoncé has created a competitive advantage for herself that cannot be denied.

However, from personal experience, it has become abundantly clear to me that in life and in business, every success comes with a batch of detractors. Read more: Beyonce Has Gone To War Against Amazon And Target For Refusing To Stock Her Album.

Here Beyonce' explains the vision of her entire album:


Kelliann McDonald is an author, a marketing and PR strategist and a people connector who loves vinyasa yoga and social media. For up to the moment updates from Kel as she pursues a global MBA from Royal Holloway, University of London, follow her on Twitter @KelliannMc, like her or follow her on Instagram @kMcDiva for #CasualKel photos.
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