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Title: A consumer investigation : monetising, marketing and distributing digital music in a niche and minority language market : the situation in Wales
Author: Thomas, Steffan Wyn
ISNI:       0000 0004 6062 6937
Awarding Body: Prifysgol Bangor University
Current Institution: Bangor University
Date of Award: 2015
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The music industry has experienced a period of disruption to its production and distribution method since the mid-to-late 1990’s (Vaccaro & Cohn, 2004). Peer-to-peer software and the introduction of the Mp3 file format have allowed consumers to gain advantage over record producers (Zentner, 2006, Chen et al, 2008 & Bateman et al, 2011) This market wide change has impacted not only the major record labels, but also small, niche and minority language music production companies. When the Mp3 arrived on the market in the mid 1990’s, the music industry, rather than embracing new technology, feared and dismissed it (Romer, 2002 & Zentner, 2006). Napster’s launch in 1999 brought the Mp3 format to the mass market, offering the free transfer of music files to its service users (Madden, 2009). Napster became the fastest downloaded software with the number of downloads running into billions of tracks per year (Rutter, 2010). The development of digital music happened before the industry was able to develop a business model and strategy to exploit its potential. Consumers’ expectations have changed as a result of the new digital services (Kacen et al, 2013). Without an online presence producers are deemed as not being legitimate production companies; and that without the exposure digital services offer, their music will not be discovered or acquired (Dewan & Ramaprasad, 2014). The importance of this study as highlighted by Carr (2012) is to develop a theoretical knowledge base for the Welsh music industry that promotes its cultural language and identity. Williamson and Cloonan (2007) identified twelve elements to the Welsh music industry, however further work by Rhisiart and Owen (2011) indicated that there remains a lack of understanding and development in the Welsh industry. This study addressed this gap by contributing the theoretical, empirical and policy knowledge. This research used the literature review along with the analysis of empirical evidence gathered via a consumer survey from over 1000 consumers to assess the opportunities for a small, minority language music producer online. Chi squared correlation tables were used to evaluate the subjective responses of consumers. These responses were mapped against the proposed business model for a 16-week route to market. Empirical evidence gathered from a consumer survey was analysed against consumer profile variables. Positive correlations indicated a point of control for the Welsh music industry within a theoretical model for distribution. This study has identified ways of capitalising on new digital opportunities. The theoretical model provides a framework for introducing market control and scarcity into the digital economy. Specific genres have been mapped against the model, which was derived from the literature.
Supervisor: Muse, Eben ; Griffiths, Gareth ; Jones, Stephen Sponsor: Knowledge Economy Skills Scholarship ; Sain Records Ltd
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available