Summit 2016
April 1-2, Washington DC

Session 2: Friday 11:45
Moderator: Patrick Preston

Peter Alhadeff
Berklee College of Music

Luiz Augusto Buff

Berklee’s Fair Music and Transparency Report: A Critique

Berklee’s Fair Music Report has made headlines by highlighting much opacity in the engagement of talent by a variety of music intermediaries. This is a long standing grievance by musicians. Yet a reality check on the report is called for. In particular, the authors believe that more scholarship is needed to support the claims made in the report.

Fairness, for example, is a contractual issue that is not solved just by advances in the technology of reporting. Neither can new technology solve the problem of the international “black box” of undistributed money to music creators. A federally reliant music trade, with a common back-end technology standard, has not worked and for good reason. In addition, comparisons of the music trade to the banking system can only go so far, as is the use of Blockchain technologies and a cryptocurrency to track online payments through the value chain from fans to music creators.

The talk is meant to inform and present a more complex and vibrant picture of the music business. Its protagonist has always been talent, and music intermediaries have their own battles to fight staying abreast with technology at a time when delivering music to the ears of consumers is fraught with difficulty and expense.

David Allan
Professor of Marketing
Saint Joseph’s University

Janée N. Burkhalter
Associate Professor of Marketing
Saint Joseph’s University

Feng Shen
Assistant Professor of Marketing
Saint Joseph’s University

Natalie T. Wood
Chair & Associate Professor of Marketing
Saint Joseph’s University
Associate Professor of Marketing
Edith Cowan University, Australia

Shoppable Music Videos: Smash Hit or Big Miss?

Music has a proven influence on consumers’ shopping behaviors. From type (Baker et al. 1992) to fit (North et al. 2000), from tempo (Milliman 1982) to volume (Smith & Curnow 1996), studies show that music influences consumer purchase both in-store and online (Eroglu et al. 2001). Beyond playing musical tracks, some brands such as Foot Locker, instead play music videos.

Music videos were originally introduced as “brief promotional video clips designed to showcase the recordings of the singers and musical groups appearing in them” (Gow 1992). Now, music videos are not only played on a variety of television networks, but also across the web. Consumers often share new music using official or unofficial music videos (Burkhalter 2009). Music videos’ ability to connect consumers with artists and one another has influenced the growth of music video product placement and introduction of new marketing communications outlets such as shoppable music videos. A shoppable music video is interactive and allows viewers to purchase some or all of the products contained in the video.

This research presented here explores the potential of shoppable videos to promote products online. Critical determinants of consumers’ desire and intention to use this new technology were examined, as well its impact on perceptions of artists and their music.

Experiment participants were recruited through Amazon’s Mechanical Turk. Previous research has indicated that Amazon’s Mechanical Turk samples are better representative of the U.S. population than undergraduate student samples (Buhrmester, Kwang, and Gosling 2011). Participants were randomly assigned to one of the three experimental conditions: limited instructions, detailed instruction, and control. After watching the video, participants were asked to report on a series of seven-point scales their familiarity with the artist, song, and music video, their opinions on the artist, song, and music video, performance expectancy (Venkatesh, Thong, and Xu 2012) toward shoppable music video, and demographics including gender and age. A total of 1,451 individuals participated in the experiment with 479 participants in the limited instructions condition, 461 participants in the detailed instructions condition, and 511 participants in the control conditions. The mean age was 27.84 with a standard deviation of 4.82, and 54% of the participants were male.

A multivariate analysis of variance of experimental condition (limited vs. detailed vs. control) by gender (male vs. female) with covariates (age, familiarity with the artist, familiarity with the song, and familiarity with the music video) was conducted to assess the effects of these variables on performance expectancy toward shoppable music video as well as opinions on the artist, song, and music video. Consumers’ perceptions of the artists and receptiveness to shoppable music videos influenced responses to the video. Recommendations and implications for marketers and artists are offered.

This research was funded by a MEIEA Research Grant.