Key Activities of a Record LabelTalent developmentArtist product marketingHandling the legal aspects of producing musicProviding service to an artistSales and distributionMarketing and promotionsProviding service to the distributors and retailers
Label typesThe Majors: big distribution and dominant market shareThe independent: these lack major distribution but theycan be large or small ‘major minors’Sub labels and imprints: these are separate companiesor divisions distributed or owned by the major labelsSpecialty labels: these focus on non main streamdistribution. For example, classical or gospel. They alsouse non traditional distribution.
The Major LabelsExamples: Universal Music Group -Which is a subsidiary of French global telecom/ entertainment. Sony Music Entertainment. This is a American based company which is related to Japanese electronics. Warner Music Group – Which is a US based and publically traded The major labels control approximately 70% of the music market and 80-90% of the US music market.
Major music company corporate structure Corporate conglomerate (Corporation that has a number of subordinate companies or divisions) Music Group Media – TV, Telecom Music Gas, water andRecord labels publishing Distribution other non music company activities
Advantages of major labels Well financed – so can afford better production, distribution, marketing and manufacturing They can offer artists ability, prestige and top production resources.BUT… Until the 360 deals were introduced labels were unable to gain any of the money that their artist made outside of their music. For example, fragrance, ringtones, concert revenues, merchandise sales.
The Independent LabelsExamples: No Limit Records Aftermath Records Priority Records Side One Dummy Records Fiction Records Way Out West
Advantages Of Independent LabelsTheyre more creative – They can find more raw talent,use creative development, marketing and financingtactics. They can also build better brand loyalty amongstfans.They can build better regional connections throughpublicity and salesThey are not restricted by long corporate approvalprocesses and can understand artists and trends faster.
Independent Label Artists Jalapeno RecordsWay Out West Close Harbor Records