Albums

What if Led Zeppelin IV was called “Stairway to Heaven” instead?

What if the Beatles’ White Album was actually called “Dear Prudence?”

What if Alanis Morrisette’s Jagged Little Pill was called “You Oughtta Know?”

And what if For Unlawful Carnal Knowledge was better known as “Right Now?”

Because none of these albums would be as cool.

What seems so apparent with names of classic albums should be more apparent in marketing and product management. Yes, most people are buying Led Zeppelin IV because it contains one of the most enjoyed rock songs in history. But that doesn’t mean you name the album after it. It’s just not as cool. It’s not to say that an album named after a song on the album sucks; it just means it could’ve been made a lot better with a different name.

Marketing forces us to try to communicate clearly and simply to consumers. In the case of the albums above, you could make a strong case for naming Zeppelin IV “Stairway to Heaven.” But what are you communicating? “Here’s a great tune surrounded by 8 other tracks that are also OK.”

You’re missing out, and you’re only communicating a part of your product, not the whole thing.

I’m rambling, but here’s the deal: don’t let “traditional” marketing tactics and philosphies make you strip a really cool product of what truly attracts consumers longterm. Something just feels good when you can talk to someone who knows the Rumours album well, or when someone knows that “Jagged Little Pill” is just a part of a single line in a song on the album.

Take a chance at making your product cooler, even if it breaks a few rules.

One response to “Albums

  1. Pingback: Albums, Take 2 « Brett’s Blog

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