Real Numbers – Offering Email Versus Tweets For A Download


Recently, I oversaw a single promotion for a band I work with. The last time we released a single we used both TweetForATrack and Reverb Nation’s widget to give away free songs for email addresses. The results for the first campaign were that we got ten times as many people to do TweetForATrack compared to Reverb Nation. The results shocked us. As we were gearing up for the next single release we did a lot of lesson learning. I did a lot of thinking and came up with some ideas on how we could make the next campaign more effective. 


The first thing I couldn’t believe was the tweeting could be that much more popular since most people don’t have a Twitter. This led me to think about the widget we were using. As much as I believe Reverb Nation’s an amazing service and would never give them up as an easy email list provider, this widget wasn’t cutting it for us. It wasn’t good looking enough and there were too many steps required to get the person who wanted the song to go through with it. I wanted to simplify it. I decided we needed a widget similar to TopSpin’s where we could capture the email into a .csv file to be used in any mailing list provider and also make the user have to do as few steps as possible to get their download. I spoke with our web developer Jackie Brennan and we figured out how to make the widget as simple and good looking as possible. The MP3 would be hosted on the bands server and it should download without having to click more than a confirmation email (BTW if all of this sounds good to you Jackie can make one of these for you at a very low price).

My second thought was that perhaps we should just do TweetForATrack since it will also capture everyone’s email address for you. Upon further thought we realized it would exclude all of the Twitter haters and alienate fans. We went in deciding to give both techniques a try.

This time, we put it out to the world that you could get the song from the band’s website. We gave the fans both options and this time we saw totally different results. Emails beat Tweets 2:1! A total turn around from before. What felt great was we now had tons of email addresses and knew we had a great working method. My takeaway was interface matter GREATLY and despite how great a marketing tool Twitter is, you still need email for many people to get involved or you are missing out.

Jesse Cannon is the editor of Musformation. He produces records at his studio Cannon Found Soundation. Follow him on Twitter at @JesseCannonMusF. For more info please visit his website.