Wednesday, March 02, 2005

The Little Virgin That Could

The more I think about Virgin Megastore's news yesterday Virgin Megastores to shake-up music download market and the current suit against them for instore scanning CD's, I realize how big an opportunity this is for all of Virgin's divisions AND the mobile industry.

I always thought it would be Amazon that implements this first and turns the World into a virtual Amazon showroom, but for a single song it makes more sense for Virgin to initiate this for all CD's.

If I'm Virgin I could turn every CD, anywhere into a Virgin MegaStore.In a Virgin Megastore, you scan a CD
and up pops the menu of that album on a display. Click on any song and hear it played through headphones on the scanning device.

Here's what I do with that ability. I offer the ability to all of my mobile subscribers to scan ANY CD anywhere and up pops a menu of the song titles. I can click on anyone and hear a snippet of that song. If I want to download that song I click on the title.

With special software (or thru an SMS) Virgin can now make their MegaStores ubiquitous.

That's great if you happen to have the CD case with you but how would it work for more common applications?

You could identify the current song on the radio just by letting the music play (after a number is called). This is already being done with Shazam. This service is available to AT&T Wireless customers. Don't just recognize the song, but download it too.

Keep in mind, a song and sounds are considered machine readable identifiers.

Another idea I have is how radio stations and satellite radio can generate some revenues from their current business. What if they offered a service where you could send a text during/after a specific song is played and you could download that song.
I guess if the previous app of music recognition was in place, this wouldnt work as well, but it's an option.

If I'm Virgin and I start offering these services what have I just done?

I just got the attention of the coveted 18-34 yr old market and offered a reason to signup or switch to my mobile service.
I have offered a service which increases my average revenue per user (ARPU).
I generate more sales from my music library.
I force all the other service providers to HAVE to offer music downloading thru phone.
I get an enormous database that I can use for my mobile marketing business.
I force service providers to also introduce higher speeds for wireless.
I have created a Virgin Megastore everywhere for minimal cost.This is the equivalent to having millions of people in a Megastore all day long.

Napster and music downloading was a big factor in launching landline broadband. Will Virgin and music downloading be the factors for higher wireless speeds?

I'm anxious to see how this turns out.
Comments, suggestions?

6 comments:

Anonymous said...

Vangorilla...

It took me a while to understand the significance of Napster and music downloading. As you pointed out, it was a major contributor to the rollout of wireline broadband - the need for speed. As of now, it is the Killer App. Music, to me, and others as well, is enjoyed a lot when you're away from the house. I see the cellphone converging into a phone/barcode reader/MP3 player/camera and -- radio. Imagine what Virgin will have when their customers are listening to the radio (cellphone), hear a song they like, and then order it through their service. That's some heavy ARPU. As you said, all SPs will have to offer something similar if they want to keep up. When that happens, there will be a new drive to incease the download speeds of the wireless networks. And it all starts with music downloads. -Walden-

Scott Shaffer said...

I'm just thinking outloud with some of these ideas. I did send them (virgin mobile and virgin megastore) my ideas and would love to see this get integrated.

Imagine what virgin and music labels could do with the data that gets created from this.

Youre a big Goo Goo Doll fan and youve downloaded a bunch of their songs. When theyre coming to town, the promoter cud send u a text offering you first dibs on tickets, or prizes to meet the band for a contest.

This is how Virgin could jumpstart their mobile marketing business.
The key 18-34 yr old consumer is the ideal target.

Anonymous said...

You should definitely check out www.mobiquid.com.
they have been doing song identification for the last five years. you can download the ringtone, the track or buy the cd once the title is identified.

Anonymous said...

You should definitely check out www.mobiquid.com.
they have been doing song identification for the last five years. you can download the ringtone, the track or buy the cd once the title is identified.

Anonymous said...

You should definitely check out www.mobiquid.com.
they have been doing song identification for the last five years. you can download the ringtone, the track or buy the cd once the title is identified.

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