Overview From a very early age Darren Swanson had a burning passion for music. His passion grew deeper when realized how much excitement a crowd has when watching a musical performer. In 1989, Darren graduated from Moorhead State University with a BA in music. Darren’s career first began by being a lead guitarist in a heavy metal band.
The band, Mata Hari, split up in 1993. Darren then joined Malcolm Watson, who was a classical violinist, at Watson and Company. Darren and Malcolm produced the third CD for Watson and Company. Shortly after the success of producing this CD the duo traveled nationwide performing.
Within a year the sales had increased from $100, 000 to $250, 000. Malcolm wanted to move a little more slowly than Darren in expanding their business to greater heights. Since Darren was ready to move on, he left Watson and Company to form his own company. Darren had a vision to record, produce and sell his own music, as well as the music of other artists. Jennifer, a long time friend of Darren’s was the booking agent for his tour. Jennifer did not share the same vision with Darren so they parted ways and moved on.
Trying to perform, handle CEO duties and handling the promotional marketing aspect of his business was getting to be too much for Darren. Business was getting to be complicated. He decided to hire a guy named Andy Harding, who was a classical guitarist to help with the office duties of the company and to suggest / implement ways to make CCM function more efficiently. Darren turned down two performances offered by Jennifer since he was already booked. However, he did not want to lose the business and the chance to get his name out there.
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Darren sent Andy to perform at the two shows. Andy was very successful and gained the knowledge of how the performances operate. Darren became a little nervous when he realized that Andy could leave him and become his competition. Darren then signed Andy to a contract and launched Andy’s first CD. Over time, Andy’s responsibilities grew with his performances that Darren hired an assistant for him. Recording and productions costs were high for musicians to produce their records/CD’s.
Digital then came into existence and cut the costs of production. Music is sorted by labels. Because of the low costs in digital recordings it was possible for smaller companies to exist. CCM was one of the smaller companies.
Darren decided that he needed to somehow market and promote his music that would increase profits for CCM and promote his product line. Issues Darren doesn’t have enough knowledge of the business piece of operating a business. It seems as though he also lacks knowledge of costs that it takes for promotion, marketing and distribution. o Darren wants to expand his company and profits yet he seems a bit uncomfortable about competing with other classical guitarist. o Since Darren’s music was a micro label band he had to rely on himself to find the means of which his music could be heard.
Higher label artists’ could rely on radio stations to promote their music. o It seems as though Jennifer is holding him back from exploring other performance venues. S. W. O.
T Analysis Strengths 1. Both direct and website sales have increased. Website sales increased from $760. 50 in 1999 to $6, 419.
35 in 2000. Mail and phone orders have more than tripled going from $2928. 72 in 1999 to $11, 442. 24 in 2000. 2. Cost of Goods sold has decreased from $36, 468.
62 in 1998 to $22, 034. 33. My analysis would show that digital recordings have cut the costs of production distribution which has allowed this decrease in COGS. 3. Darren has determination and is very motivated.
"Congress shall make no law... abridging the freedom of speech." (United States Constitution) However, it seems almost everywhere; many forms of art are being unfairly censored. One such form that is often overlooked as art is music. "Music is probably the most censored of all art forms" (The Economist; p 73) There are hundreds of artists who have been unfairly censored, ranging from popular music ...
He has been successful with his product line. Weaknesses 1. Darren’s ability to market is product line. 2.
Darren does too much of the business segment on his own. It seems that he is not comfortable with hiring help or does not fully like to depend on anyone else running the “business” side of the company. 3. Total expenses have increase tremendously going from $148, 527. 09 in 1999 to $190, 297.
72 in 2000. My assessment leads me to believe that this could be a result of Darren lacking knowledge of distribution, inventory and marketing. Opportunities 1. To market and promote his music nationally.
2. Being diverse in more than just the classical aspect of music could give him an advantage of reaching more clientele. 3. To be competitive with higher level artists.
Threats 1. Not wanting to compete against certain artists. Contracting with other artists and teaching them could increase their talent and encourage them to become Darren’s competition. 2. Missing out on doing some promotional tours to due work that Darren has taken upon himself to do. 3.
Rising competitors if Darren doesn’t stabilize his business aspect and secure his market.” 5 Force Model ” Competition Rivalry Artists within the Micro label level would be the strongest competitors. o Artists within the Vanity Label Level would be moderate competitors especially, if they intend to advance to the Micro label. o Artists within the Major and Independent Labels would be less competitive since it is unusual for Micro labels to advance to these areas. Although, it is not totally impossible.
New Competitors Competitors would be entering a different marketing segment and would need to establish their resources and overall marketing clientele. Buyers Darren’s buyers are mostly between the ages 40 and 60 years old. Suppliers Distribution centers from which he buys his supplies for inventory. o One-stop centers Substitute Products Acoustitherapyo Andrew Thomas Har lingo Music for candlesRecommendationso Darren should get rid of Jennifer and find someone who is more compatible in helping him reach his goal of expanding nationally.
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o Increase product lines. o Hire someone to operate his marketing, promotion, inventory and production costs and issues so that he can devote his time to tours and concerts. o Try signing a contract with an artist of the Independent Label level in order to help increase his branding label. o Hire an agent to sign on new artists rather than doing it himself.