I’m a fan of Mark Cuban. I like the enthusiasm he brings to his basketball team, the Dallas Mavericks, and to the NBA. I like watching them play. When I was dominant on NBA Live ’03, the Mavericks were my team. I appreciate the rebel spirit he brings to his team and NBA referees, and the way he goes after what he wants, like the Chicago Cubs.
So when I saw a post on his blog about one of my other favorite topics, music, I had to dive in. And wouldn’t you know, he a “market culturist!”
A little over a week ago, Mr. Cuban talked about a movie’s official soundtrack. A few get really popular – these days the hype is for Juno – but most just languish in the final end credits that no one watches long enough to read anyway. So if most of them aren’t really doing much anyway, and they cost so much to publish and record, is there any other way they can be used to provide value to a customer? Yes, says Mark Cuban, give it away for free to whoever buys the movie ticket.
That’s where the real Hollywood money is made anyway, right? Ticket sales. And as prices for tickets approach $10 apiece, I do, from time to time, wonder if seeing the movie in the theater is worth the money. I mean, thanks to bit torrents and Quick Silver Screen, I can see a lot of movies for free at home. Legality questions? Try Usenet.
So, back to, “why would I want to pay $20 to see a movie with my gal, when we can see it at home for cheaper and not have some idiot’s cell phone go off in the middle of important plot developments?” Because I’m a music fan and the ticket will give me access to a free copy of the sound track. And as a music lover, if I’m made aware of one more band that I’d like, or a new version of a popular song, that’s really valuable to me. Some people are writers, or like to chop up movies on Fan Edit. Mr. Cuban says give them access to the script. As he summarizes,
“Bottomline, is that anything that can be delivered digitally as a download could be bundled into the value of a movie ticket and delivered from the ticketing site, the studio or from the theater’s website. The cost to deliver a song, script or even video (like what you might find as extras on a dvd) digitally is nominal relative to the marketing investment required to get people to the theater”
Mark Cuban: Visionary, business “maverick,” and a true “market culturist.”