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iTunes feature increases album sales

updated 10:05 am EDT, Tue July 1, 2008

iTunes Complete My Album

Album sales have depended on single releases to generate interest for years, but thanks to the iTunes Store's Complete My Album feature has bolstered album sales. Musicians are releasing multiple tracks via Complete My Album and realizing full album sales at impressive rates, according to Reuters. Complete My Album allows customers to turn their individual tracks into a complete album at a reduced price by giving them credit for every track they have previously purchased from that album. One recent example was Lil Wayne's hit album "Tha Carter III." Universal Motown made six songs available for download in the months prior to its street date, a full one-third of the 18 tracks included on the final iTunes version of the album.

"For artists that have multiple tracks out, if the album is solid and there's an offer that makes sense to consumers, they will use it," Universal Motown senior VP of digital business development Cameo Carlson says.

Despite the entire album being leaked online just weeks before its availability, "Tha Carter III" still racked up first-week sales of more than 1 million. In addition, 10 percent of the album's sales were digital, up from less than one percent for Wayne's past titles. The most "eyebrow-raising" statistic, the reported noted, was that 52 percent of the album's sales on iTunes came through Complete My Album sales.

Apple introduced the option at the end of March 2007 and since has seen conversion rates of around 10 percent. The strength of Complete My Album is helping to overcome labels fears of cannibalization of album sales, as customers can simply fill in the blanks via the service.









by MacNN Staff

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Comments

  1. Elektrix

    Joined: Dec 1969

    +2

    makes sense

    I haven't actually used the full complete my album feature yet (most albums I'd want, I already bought the full album right away), but it has given me more confidence knowing the feature is there if I do feel like buying an individual track or two. It used to be that I'd be reluctant to buy a single track if I thought I might want to buy the full album later (and thus would feel like I wasted money buying the individual tracks).

  1. fletcher

    Joined: Dec 1969

    +4

    Digital Distribution

    Complete My Album is a good example of a feature that digital distribution makes possible. I've used it several times to buy a complete album after I had previously purchased a single track for a mix I was making.

    Also, I've seen artists give away a single track off their album for free. Complete My Album essentially makes this a one dollar off coupon for the full album. This seems like a great way of promoting your album to potential fans.

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