The digital age has caused all sorts of headaches for musical artists and executives. Those stuck in the past have relied largely on lawsuits and the threat of litigation to keep people from downloading music.
However, all the warnings and lawsuits in the world would keep people from doing it so the smart artists stayed ahead of the curve and still have been able to thrive in a new kind of marketplace.
In the case of metal band Iron Maiden, they used piracy to their advantage:
n the case of Iron Maiden, still a top-drawing band in the U.S. and Europe after thirty years, it noted a surge in traffic in South America. Also, it saw that Brazil, Venezuela, Mexico, Colombia, and Chile were among the top 10 countries with the most Iron Maiden Twitter followers. There was also a huge amount of BitTorrent traffic in South America, particularly in Brazil.
Rather than send in the lawyers, Maiden sent itself in. The band has focused extensively on South American tours in recent years, one of which was filmed for the documentary “Flight 666.” After all, fans can’t download a concert or t-shirts. The result was massive sellouts. The São Paolo show alone grossed £1.58 million (US$2.58 million) alone.
And in a positive cycle, Maiden’s online fanbase grew. According to Musicmetric, in the 12 months ending May 31, 2012, the band attracted more than 3.1 million social media fans. After its Maiden England world tour, which ran from June 2012 to October 2013, Maiden’s fan base grew by five million online fans, with a significant increase in popularity in South America.
There are always going to be people out there willing to spend their money. The question is, “Who will come up with the ideas to get them to do it?”