Southern Gospel moves into the Internet age
From time to time, there is discussion of when Southern Gospel will fully take advantage of the Internet age.
Most groups have already, sometimes hesitantly, taken the first step of putting a website up. Many of these groups have also made it possible to order their products through their website. (One notable exception is the Mark Trammell Trio, which has an order form you can print out to mail in orders, but no online ordering system. I only point this out in hopes that someone who knows them personally can encourage them to remedy the deficiency.)
But making one’s music available through digital downloads is the next step. Although some groups’s music is available through iTunes or eMusic, this is typically at the label’s initiative.
As it has been observed before, there is a way to take this to the next level. If groups arrange both the licensing details and the software/website details, they can make their songs available for digital download from their own websites.
Bloggers have enjoyed imagining the marketing impact this would have if Greater Vision, Signature Sound, or Legacy Five implemented this strategy. However, those who have observed this in the past have put the question as a wish for something to happen in the future. Well, I was browsing websites the other day and discovered that, in a perhaps unlikely corner of the Southern Gospel world, the future has arrived.
The Greenes’ website store makes all the songs available for CD purchase also available for digital download. [EDIT, 6/18/12: Broken link removed.] Additionally, anyone who purchases CDs from their website can download the songs immediately at no additional charge, in addition to receiving the CD itself within normal shipping times.
This is the kind of innovative strategy that will take Southern Gospel marketing strategies to the next level.