I stumbled into an interview with Eric Idle. How could I not keep listening? Eric is a gem, a comedic oracle. So I was fascinated with what he had to say.
He was talking about his latest show called What About Dick.
The show sounds fun with British comedians like Billy Connolly and Eddie Izzard. What fascinated me most, however, was the discussion about sales, marketing and distribution.
“how would a major studio react to a proposal for a movie called What about Dick?”
Beyond that, he stated how sick he was of trying to get paid by the studios,
“how do you get the money out of them?”
So for this project, created his own download and purchase model. He talked openly, on ABC radio about distribution via Amazon and iTunes saying that he will probably go there eventually but for now he is just selling from a web site - whataboutdick.com.
His marketing plan was equally amazing. No advertising at all. He just asked the cast to use their twitter feeds to tell fans about the show and managed to fill the theatre purely from Twitter. Then he began sales of the movie of the show on line, purely from twitter, and eventually via radio interviews.
Now I was very interested.
All I knew was that Eric Idle had a new show. I had missed most of the interview so I was not even sure of the show’s name yet. I needed a little sleuthing. This is why God invented the internet. Moments only and I found reference to the show and then the show’s web site.
Go take a look. It is lovely to see this simple website with its vintage look and feel, telling you all about the show. Eventually I clicked buy. I am fascinated by the process of on line sales so I was keen to see how it all worked.
Well - it just worked. It was about the simplest buying experience on line I could imagine. It was friendly and helpful. They made it clear that the file I would receive was friendly for all platforms, Mac, PC and iPads. They made it easy to pay with Amazon or PayPal. They allowed me to stream it on line up to 3 times or download a standard def version or a high def version. It was all so easy and for $6 how could I refuse. I am sure I could have hunted a torrent of it but I was not even interested. The download was too easy.
I carry around a grab bag of axioms for life. They are little word games I enjoy that dictate how I think life ought to be led. One of my big axioms is
“Make it easy for me to … insert whatever here…”
Make it easy for me to give you money. Make it easy for me to get it right. Make it easy for me to make you happy. Whatever - Just Make it easy. Make it clear what I need to do, and I will do it.
So make it easy for me to give you money is vital in this day of electronic payments.
I just had to buy a license of Adobe products and Adobe just do not get making it easy. Was a nasty process where another axiom almost kicked in. The axiom of “Don’t encourage bad practice.” Adobe sales is bad practice and I do not want to encourage that.
Eric Idle has it all good and all right. It is too easy to buy it so why steal it.
I have no idea what the show will be like, well I am expecting it to be good entertainment, but I certainly expect $6 worth of fun from it.
I also really like the openness of the website. They encourage you to buy a copy for you and your friends to watch. No big deal about single use and don’t share and this is for personal use. Just please buy it, enjoy it, and tell your friends. Via twitter and facebook.
So, I am impressed. Local radio brought it to my notice. I now follow Eric Idle on Twitter. And I have his latest show sitting on my hard drive to watch tonight. And it was a buying experience I loved. I have had a good morning - and it is not even 10.00am.