Marketing for the Music Business

2679 words (11 pages) Essay in Marketing

08/02/20 Marketing Reference this

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This Report will be investigating the product Tidal, focusing on its pricing strategy, distribution channels, marketing communications both traditional and online methodologies. The report will also be analysing an overview of processing and people alongside physical evidence within the streaming service chose.

I chose this particular topic due to the controversy surrounding Tidal and weather its extravagant beginnings will innovate the music industry .The music streaming service is fronted and backed by Jay-Z, it’s like any other streaming service except the key point of artist ownership in comparison to its industry competitors e.g. iTunes, Spotify ,Amazon prime music, Deezer and YouTube. Tidal stood out due to it being the first artist owned streaming service in the world. The idea of an artist owned streaming platform is a game changer for the industry.

Introduction into the marketing mix

The marketing mix termed by Kotler is the “combination of four elements, called the 4P’s (Product, Price, Promotion and. Place), that every company has the option of adding, subtracting, or modifying in order to create a desired marketing strategy. All four factors are detrimental when it comes to micromanaging a product”.

(kotler, 2008) 

Concept of and Components of the marketing mix

The marketing mix encompasses a number of actions, a business must take on the accountability of finding a targeted cohort of customers. Once the allocated cohort has been chosen, the item for consumption is then placed into the market whilst providing the appropriate materials, price, and distribution and promotional endeavours. These factors are combined or intertwined to achieve the marketing plan.


Product in reference refers to the merchandise, goods and service offered by the business. The urge to pay not for the tangible product but for the beneficial side it will provide.

Product is set of tangible and intangible attributes including packaging, colour, manufacturers prestige, retailers prestige and manufacturers and retailers services which buyer may accept as offerings satisfaction of wants and services “

(Stanton, 2010) 


Pricing is the amount charged or indicated for a service or product.

Factors such as demand for a product, the consumer’s ability to pay all come into fixing the price for a product.


Merchandise is produced to be sold to consumers, so finding a place where the consumer can conveniently make a purchase is very vital .involving chains of distributors and individuals (wholesalers & retailers).


Promotion is completed through the means of personal selling this containing platforms of advertising, sales promotion and publicity e.g. Social media outlets. It’s. mainly used to gain prospective and provide information to consumers about the availability

Distribution 1.3

Music distribution is the development of getting music from artist to store, making it accessible to the public for purchase.

Distribution is the half way point between completed music and the cohort’s future fans/ consumers. This part of music is very crucial as a part of the music promotion efforts. Brick and mortar music distributors used to be the only way for record labels and independent artists to get their records in the hands of listeners.

Digital music distribution


Digital music distribution works almost the same as physical distribution just from a different platform. As an alternative of transferring albums to a physical store the distribution company will dispense the music in a digital format. The music is then sent to online streaming services and that’s where Tidal comes in providing a service for streaming alongside other platforms. Bucklin explains that “a channel of distribution comprises a set of institutions which perform all of the activities utilised to move a product and its title from the production to consumption”. (Bucklin, 1966)

Physical Music distribution

This method of distribution is more traditional, this method of distributing merchandise is how albums get into stores. A music Distribution Company signs deals with record labels and artists this then gives them the right to sell their music to shops on licence

Tidal Distro

Tidal is a streaming service so it will be located on platforms such as amazon music, iTunes ,YouTube and the Tidal application is also available for downloads on Apple IOs updates .

Pricing 1.4


Base monthly cost

Library size


Offline Listening

Amazon prime

Inclusive with prime




Apple music










Google music





Spotify free





Spotify premium






As shown in the table above its clear to see that Spotify offers free, ad supported versions in addition to offering a premium service. Whilst Tidal, apple music and amazon music unlimited subscriptions are all paid.

Amazon prime music has a small selection of music within its library allowing just around 2 million songs, as it’s free its inclusive with an amazon prime membership at a cost of £79.

Whereas the unrestricted version of Spotify, permits access to the entire music library on digital outputs such as iPad, mobiles and computers with regular ads between singles .But whilst this service is free Spotify adds limitations allowing consumers to only listen to lower audio quality, offline downloading isn’t accessible. Hence why Spotify has an alternative between standard free subscription and premium upgrade.

Monthly premium Spotify subscription allows offline downloading and the option to opt out of ads free streaming .Spotify currently offers two month free trial of the premium version to offer a comparison between both subscriptions.

Apple also offers a free version of apple music but this also has its limitations. It’s almost the same as Spotify from a monthly base cost of £9.99

Apple offers 3 months trial of apple music to help consumers discover weather its right for them.

Tidal is the most expensive of the services stated above, with no free option available. The only alternatives are Tidal premium with normal and high sound quality and High definition music Videos, consumers opt to pay £9.99 per month. Tidal offers segmented pricing from Hifi, which offers high fidelity sound quality, its £19.99 for premium. Tidal is a value based service allowing consumers to have alternatives on whichever service they choose financially suitable.

Marketing Communication 1.5

Marketing communications are described by Kotler is “the specific mix of sales promotion, advertising, public relations, personal selling and direct marketing tools that the business uses to persuasively communicate customer value and build customer relationships”. (Kotler, 2008)

Advertising – Is any funded arrangement of non-personal demonstration and promotion of goods, merchandise or services by a branded sponsor. In this case the branded service would be Tidal and artists associated with the streaming service. Promoting tidal weather that be via social media platforms or word of mouth.

Personal selling – personal presentation is the force of sales under the purpose of generating trades and building consumer relationships within the industry.

Sales promotion

Sale promotion is short lived incentives to encourage the purchase or sale of the service, for this instance Tidal .This a temporary activity aimed at boosting sales and revenue, including discount sales. Premium subscribers get additional features and offers on live tickets. Incentives such as 10% off for students and 40% off for military associates.

Public relations

Building good relationships with businesses various public interests by obtaining favourable publicity, building up a good repertoire and corporate image. Tidal’s public relations team would deal with unwanted rumours, stories and events that potentially harm generating sales.




Direct marketing

Direct marketing communications carefully target individual customers or consumers of goods or service to obtain an immediate response and cultivate lasting customer relationships.

The digital marketing mix in effect is similar to the marketing mix. It is the reworked copy of price, place, product and promotion to the digital marketing framework.

The digital aspect of marketing consists of new internet engines that have emerged as the internet has developed, as well as those pre – existing companies. Kotler describes it as a “marketing channel of a set

Interdependent organisations that help make a product or service available for use or consumption by the consumer or business user”. (kotler, 2010)


Process, people, physical evidence

Tidal core product is a premium paid service to stream or download music available through subscription.

The physical evidence is Tidal’s application or website, the layout of the website allows them to compete against other competitors because of the simplicity of the application and website.

People and Process

Tidal uses these services to keep their subscribers gratified and to contrast them from other streaming services, by using two segmented sections.

 Offering alternatives between services that combine lossless audio and hifi know as high definition music videos whilst adding features of exclusive video content from artist and special features on music .Tidal delivers the service through iOS applications and their website .Tidal has managed to use front line people in order to promote the service although having an online presence.

Overall Tidal has attempted to be a market leader and continue to contend against its highest competitors e.g. Apple, Spotify and YouTube in all aspects of the marketing mix. It uses new and eccentric promotional activities, their pricing strategies are not like many other competitors.

Branding 1.7


Tidal is a streaming service acquired by jay-Z for 56 million with the aim and aspiration to innovate the music industry and permit artist control over their music within the industry. Tidal’s mission goal is to stop organisations outside of the process gaining profit off selling or advertising hardware.

Whilst competing with both online and traditional music providers, Tidal brands itself through mass communication, one compelling attribute about tidal was the list of mega music industrial veterans supporting the endeavour. Merging aspects of the marketing mix to communicate its brand values e.g. their method of promotion innovating advertising format to build revenue, offering no free option but high quality services with paid services. Co – marketing / partnerships with publishers, most of Tidal’s signed artists all hold shares within Tidal.

Excellent front line advertising and branding , during the launch of Tidal multiple artist changed their social media bios to profiles of the design blue and posted the phrase “#TIDALforAll” on Facebook, twitter and Instagram .These are all social platforms falling under the digital mix permitting a distribution channel for consumers . Tidal gained the attention of the public with its impressive feature high fidelity lossless audio quality and higher subscription fees. Which would conclude in artists having an increase in royalties. Tidal could still be the game changer for the music industry,” if everyone says, ‘wow, so many things have changed. This has gotten better. I like what’s happening ‘. Jayz explained when queried how he will judge his success.

Conclusion 1.8

The conclusion I arrived at is although Tidal’s mission statement and goal is admiral, the truth is the industry has no regard for music piracy. It is commendable that certain figures within the industry want to take back what was taken from them, and they started with Tidal In hope that this streaming service would innovate the music industry allowing artist control content. Whilst dethroning competitors Spotify and presenting a new direction for the industry from both a musically inspired and business viewpoint.

Unfortunately we are at a time in life where consumers see no point in paying £19.99 for high quality videos and music streams with competitors such as YouTube and Spotify. Our industry is surrounded by shortcuts unfortunately streaming music for free without added features, theft of material are all detrimental to the industry. If Tidal want to excel in the future they need to persuade consumers why paying a fixed price of £19.99 for lossless audio music is worth the expenditure.



  1. Apple launched a Home pod speaker, a great home device that can stream music but only with apple music which would require you to make an account and subscribe .Tidal should invest in creating home assistant hardware and could theoretically do the same with their own music services.
  1. Tidal should pay attention to what attracts its competitor’s cohorts, competitors like Spotify drop custom playlists for consumers filled with recommendations of songs that may be suitable to the user. Although other companies have tried the algorithm not many of them have managed to beat Spotify discover weekly. Surely with the amount of support backing Tidal it could come up with a way to read data and analyse accurately what consumers want to listen to.



  • al, K. e. (2008). principles of marketing .
  • Bucklin. (1966). Theory of distribution channel structure.
  • Kotler. (2008). principles of marketing. In H. pearson, principles of marketing.
  • kotler. (2010).
  • kotler, p. (2008). principles of marketing . harlow , london.
  • Stanton, W. J. (2010). Module 5 Marketing. England.
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