Facebook App for Merchandise Sales - Moontoast Impulse
Savvy artists know that merchandise sales can play a significant role in a band's success - bolstering the bottom line and giving fans the opportunity to express their support. While the music industry continues to evolve at the speed of sound, shrewd musicians are getting hip to maximizing merch opportunities. Much more than just T-shirts, hats, and hoodies— today's swag collections often include signed lithographs, electronic items, and fashion accessories. The most pioneering artists are taking these products beyond the merch table and bringing them directly to their social fans on sites like Facebook.
Moontoast Impulse is a Facebook application that provides music artists with a social commerce storefront. The initial release of the application let fans play, share, and buy digital tracks and albums, right from their Facebook News Feed without ever leaving the site. In response to feedback from artists, Moontoast have released an update that allows bands to include merch products in their store inventory, including the ability to accommodate some ticket sales.
Marcus Whitney, CTO and co-founder for Moontoast, said, "We're working hard to give artists the products that give them control over their creative and commercial interests. The Moontoast Impulse product is on a fast-track development cycle so that we can keep responding to feedback from our customers."
Launching Moontoast Impulse as a Facebook app was no accident. According to a recent Experian HitWise report, the average Facebook user spends over 4 hours a month on the site. Multiply that by the network's 600 million+ users, and that's a lot of potential exposure for a band.
Beyond the numbers, social sites like Facebook make it easy for fans and artists to interact directly. With Moontoast Impulse, musicians are able to connect with fans via "Shares," "Likes," and comments. This type of fan interaction is key to increasing sales, particularly of merchandise. A recent article from the CMA Close Up News Service stated, "Artists who pay close attention to their fans, tend to sell the most merchandise." Social commerce tools like Moontoast Impulse help artists pay attention and build relationships that translate into revenue. With touring headliners routinely taking in tens and sometimes hundreds of thousands of dollars per day on merchandise sales, the effort is well worth it.
This kind of one-on-one fan nurturing is, perhaps, the future lynchpin of successful music careers. The inclusion of merch sales in the revenue plan is also key. In an interview with Chris Kornelis of Seattle Weekly, Dave Bakula, senior VP of analytics at Nielsen Entertainment, said, "… one of the biggest places where I think there's potential for more revenue is from fans buying more stuff."
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