As a music fan one of the sites I visit almost on a daily basis is billboard with core brand equity elements of the 'authority', and 'champion' of the music industry. It’s a great portal for sales and shipment data, charts, news, reviews and general music industry gossip. So on Saturday when I logged in – I was surprised to see a radical site redesign. Granted the old site was tired and driven by banner ad’s, but was easy to navigate and content rich.
A New Business Model
With focus on downloading music (via lala.com), I sense a change of business model – to actively generate user revenue and return visits vs. the ad driven model.
Is it the same brand?
I’m not sure that I like the new ‘MySpace’ feel which undermines the ‘authority’ brand value. The brand clearly needs to evolve and perhaps has succeeded - I have already opened a www.Lala.com account and downloaded music (by Alexi Murdoch).
Marketing works !
This could prove to be a classic marketing case study where a brand:
a) Reinvents itself by refreshing its equity - but not straying too far (simply by adding ‘first choice’) as an additional equity element
b) Ensures it understand how to engage and retain consumers
c) Drives the top and bottom line
Bravo to the marketing folks at Billboard.