What Kind of Marketing is This?

Just based on the track list for BEGIN., is it really necessary to frame David’s latest effort as a “religious” offering?  There’s only one sacred song, and the rest are covers. Surely, they must know more than just Mormons want to buy this thing! I hope it reaches Amazon.com and iTunes with a different description!


Posted on June 23, 2012, in BEGIN., public image. Bookmark the permalink. 37 Comments.

  1. Obviously when advertising on Deseret Book you would market it as being religious and inspirational. That makes sense to me. I would assume it will have a different description if it goes up on iTunes and Amazon because it really isn’t a religious album except for one song.

    • The good news is that it is the number one album at Deseret book. People are preordering it.

  2. I did notice that too hg. He is on a mormon mission for 2 years so I can’t say I am surprised it is listed at Desert Book as religious even though the covers on it are not. I would hope that that Begin is marketed to amazon and itunes differently. I wonder when it will be available there? My expectations for this album doing well in sales are very low. Marketing David correctly has never been a strength of David’s “team” in the past and I really hope that changes when he returns to his career. I would think David would want a diverse fan base as he needs it to sell well and more importantly tour when he returns. Well that is good news that it is number one at Deseret book. I guess. lol

    • While searching for David’s Begin at Amazon I noticed that Casey Abrams new album is being released next week. I am a fan and bought Casey’s album. Casey was on AI on S10. To me Casey should have won as opposed to twangy good old country boy Scotty. Just IMO. lol The songs have a jazzy and breezy feel to them and Casey is a true musician. I like to support artists that are true to themselves and Casey might not have big sales but it is a good album. This is a link to the song samples:http://www.amazon.com/Casey-Abrams/e/B000APTAOW/ref=ntt_mus_dp_pel Begin is not at Amazon for purchase yet but I am sure it will be soon. I plan to buy several of David’s new album as my mom is a fan of David.

      • I really like the duet he and Haley did of “Hit the Road Jack”. I may not purchase the album but I’ll definitely buy that song.

  3. My thing is: David has universal appeal and should be marketed as such!

    The wording reeks of parochial small-town narrow-mindedness. I don’t care if it’s a local bookstore.

    That’s an ongoing problem of David’s “management.” It’s the equivalent of a Michael Jackson, if he were starting out today, having management that only marketed him in the state of Indiana. Could you imagine?

    • I saw that was was also surprised. For most, it seems a stretch. It would have made more sense to say something along the lines of thoughtful, meaningful” etc,

  4. I’m taken back by the statement because it seems so contrived. I get the impression that the person who wrote this has probably never heard U2’s “Pride” or is even aware that “True Colors” was not only a huge pop hit but has become somewhat of an anthem.

    When I read: “Created to musically portray his connection to God,…”
    I wondered, is this true? The main reason that David made this CD was to portray his “connection to God”??? I know I’m projecting but from reading the list of song titles, I was under the impression he was singing inspiring songs that convey respect, acceptance and helping one another.

    I look forward to reading his liner notes to see what HE has to say about the CD and the songs he selected.

  5. Bah.

    I’m pretty sure the same description will be used everywhere.

  6. IMO (and using some of David’s own words) I think he feels his life is divinely guided and inspired.

    * He prayed to God, asked if he should audition for idol, and heard a “yes.” Then he auditions, gets a golden ticket, almost wins, and gets signed to a major record contract — something that had eluded him for years.

    * Before winning that Utah vocal contest, David was way too nervous to go on, so his dad suggested they say a prayer. Then he composes himself, goes on stage and wins.

    * Can you imagine the fervent prayers that were said during the vocal cord paralysis years? And then his voice eventually comes back with a unique shimmery quality to it.

    * He releases his 3rd album at the age of 19! — the age Mormon males usually go on missions — and it tanks.

    I don’t know why his fans find the name of God so cringe-worthy. To us most of these songs may not have any connection to God, but David feels some connection surely because he said he was choosing songs that related tangentially to his mission, didn’t he, in a vlog?

    A funny personal story is my classmates and I wanted to sing BOTW at our 8th grade graduation and were denied (it was a religious school) because of the “drug-related” lyrics, “When you’re down and out, when you’re on the streets, when evening falls so hard….”

    • Well, I will speak for myself and say that I don’t have anything against God… or faith or religious music. Have my own personal faith that is vital to my life. And, based on David’s coments, I was honestly expecting more religious songs, hymns etc. I thought he my record I am trying to be like Jesus even.
      Generally, the description tells people what is in the package. Most objective buyers would not tie those songs to a personal walk with God. That is all I was saying when I said it was a stretch. DR makes a good point in wanted to read the liner notes. David may tie those songs to his personal faith- we will see.

    • Based on the culture of free downloading, as HG was discussing just the other day. his sales did not tank.

    • PS- your story is pretty funny. about the “drug related” lyrics .. 🙂

  7. I preordered the album last night, but didn’t bother to read the description, ha.

    Saying Begin is religious is like saying TOSOD is a religious album. There is a lot about TOSOD that is upbeat and has connections to aspects of faith, but the songs don’t scream it. Nor do these. So calling it as such is interesting. But like everyone’s said, it’s Deseret, and we have to keep in mind a religious based label is behind it’s release. I just hope the wording doesn’t deter anyone from buying it.

    That’s funny about BOTW, anon. I had BOTW played (on piano only, no singing) as the song before Canon in D when I got married and everyone except close friends questioned the choice. But I love the song, and play it often on the piano myself, so I did it anyway.

  8. The line comes from the Shadow Mountain Records media kit flyer that was leaked last week. I actually like how they’ve chosen to present the BEGIN CD. Right or wrong, there’s still a huge stigma with releasing a “cover CD” and bias against artists who release covers. The common thinking is that cover CDs are released by older artists or fading stars desperate to make a quick buck. When David Cook was asked about whether he would ever release a CD of covers, he made it pretty clear he would not. By saying that the CD was created by David to show his musical connection to God, David manages to spin a cover CD into something very different – something not motivated by money or desperation. He also creates a great hook for journalists and reviewers to write about the CD, thereby increasing the chances of media coverage. It’s not just a run of the mill cover CD. Finally, it reminds everyone that David is away on a two year mission. Reminding everyone that David is away on a mission is important because it lets everyone know he is away from the public eye by choice, not because nobody is interested. Reminding people he is away on a mission will also build the anticipation for his return in 2014. This will allow for a big splashy comeback covered by the media. I really hope they use the same description for iTunes and Amazon. It is truly brilliant. Someone really gave this lots of thought.

    • Well, you may be right- certainly food for thought! just seems to me the same point could be made by saying something like
      “A thoughtful artist, always seeking deeper meaning in life, David brings us a collection of his personal ietc…”

      Regardless- Praised God for covers, new music or what ever is on its way.

      • hell0g0rge0us

        Thank you! That’s basically the point I was making. The way it’s worded right now sounds a bit clumsy and (sorry to say) simple-minded.

      • Great comment Rae!
        I also have nothing against the wording as it is currently presented, but prefer the softer phrasing you recommended more, especially if a non-christian casual or by chance buyer were to come across the CD.

      • I agree with you rae that would be a good way to word if for Amazon and itunes. I do hope that they carry the album at stores like Walmart or Target too. I guess my idea of David not playing it safe would be to release a hip hop album with a rapper like Lil Wayne which is not going to happen. lol It would not bother me if it did. I don’t really care as much how they market this album but I hope when David returns to his career in 2 years he is marketed towards a diverse fan base.

    • I hope that all works for David and you are right, Carley.

      • I think that what Rae proposes is probably safer in terms of not offending anyone but, with respect, quite dull & forgettable. The line Shadow Mountain Records used will stand out and, as I said, will get the media’s attention. I applaud the label for taking the risk. If there’s one consistent problem I’ve seen in David’s marketing, it’s that he’s always tried to play it safe. There’s nothing wrong with playing it safe but maybe it is time to take a calculated risk. I think it will pay off. There are many in the US who will be drawn to the CD by the reference to God, particularly in the US South. I doubt the line is so preachy that it would turn anyone off. Let’s hope they stick with this line with iTunes nd Amazon.

      • Well, you may be right… dull and forgetable wording… 🙂 It was off the cuff and I am no PR expert I guess that is how I see David myself and one of the things that differentiates him from the crowd. At the end of the day, I still struggle to see how most of these songs are tied to a God- but maybe the public will make the connection- or pause make the connection to his mission,. However I respect your opinion and will stop beating the horse.

      • what about Nicki Minaj? The possibilities are endless upon D’s return.

      • David is on a religious mission right now so I’m sorry but I fail to see how it’s a risk to use the word “God” by a LDS label like Shadow Mountain Records.
        Also, I’ll wait and see what kind of promo this album of covers will get. I hope that David worked on something related to the marketing because I don’t think it’d be a great idea to let his “team” to talk for him. David always tries to reach to all of his diverse fans so I hope that it will stay that way and I hope that his music will be promoted to inspire not to preach and exclude a part of his supporters.
        His fanbase goes beyond Utah or even the US. He has fans from everywhere and from every background, I just hope that they won’t be left out.

  9. Rae, my comment was definitely not a criticism of you. There’s just so much competition for attention in the music industry today that I think a marketing team really does need a good “hook” or “angle” to help an artist stand out from the crowd so the media and the public will give the new music a chance. The marketing team needs to capture the attention of reviewers, radio, and the public and do so in 25 words or less. Your line is a great description of David and probably a more accurate description of the BEGIN CD but in my opinion, what Shadow Mountain Records wrote will probably be more effective marketing wise. But that’s just my opinion. I’m also not a PR rep but took a few marketing courses in University and can totally see what the label was going for from a marketing standpoint. Yes it’s a risk. No way Jive would have used “God” in any marketing material. Too much of a risk of offending. But we all know how effective Jive was in marketing David’s music right 🙂 The fact that Jive would not have used God actually makes me like the line even more.

  10. Kari is doing a great job with David’s twitter. David should have been using his twitter as a marketing tool all along. Twitter is a great marketing tool for David. This latest tweet sent by Kari on his twitter is a great example: @DavidArchie 12 hours until I’ll Never Go premieres on Juice.ph & MYXph.com once premiered u can go to DavidArchuleta.com 2 C it again. (ks)

  11. http://pinoyarchies.com/2012/06/20/a-message-from-elder-archuleta/

    “A Message From Elder Archuleta
    Thank you my beloved family and mis amigos for your prayers! They really do help. I am so grateful for the knowledge of this gospel, and the way it hits people when you first share it with them. It is true. God has provided the way for us to make it through this challenging life here on earth. Enduring to the end is not easy. It is a hard thing to do, but the 3 simple things we always hear about – reading, praying, and going to church – help make it all the more easier to do it, because it shows us how. And it not only shows us how, but it shows us that we can.

    I hope I am making some sense as I am rushing with my typing. But I will talk to you all l

    Love you all,

    Elder Archuleta”

    Add this to anon’s list above. What we have is a very very religious guy. Except for a few tears here and there, he really only gets emotional before his home audiences in Utah and Idaho. I think that’s the real David. Personally, I very much agree with HG about the marketing and I mentioned it a few days ago, but I think we should be glad that it isn’t even more religious-sounding. It could be a calculated move like Carley says, but it does seem like there’s a complicated, Romney-like path David walks, trying to remain acceptable to a larger audience, and yet wanting to share his real passion with the world. JMO.

    • cchalo I think that you just nailed what is David’s dilemma in your comments. Well stated. For us non religious folks or at least not devoutly religious folks I just hope that when David returns he wants to remain acceptable to a larger diverse audience. I would hate to see his younger fans totally disregarded. That would be a big marketing mistake. But idk. David’s career has already suffered in the US due to his extremely conservative/devout religious views. JMHO.

    • I don’t understand what you’re talking about here to be honest. Romney ran and was elected to the governorship in the state of Massachusetts, not Utah or Idaho.

  12. I don’t think it’s clever marketing or at least I don’t think it was a marketing move to use the word God. We’re talking about Shadow Mountain Records and Deseret Books here, so I’ll say that it was a safe bet, a really expected move from them. TBH, I wasn’t surprised at all and I don’t see it as a risk from them.

  13. “I’ll never go” music video :

  14. I see there’s a new thread but have to add this. I haven’t listened to Mandisa, but my understanding is that her music is very religious, invokes God, etc. And she is handing 98 percent of the mainstream, pop, appeal to the current culture, “inoffensive” (LOL) idols their azzes.

  15. Worst promo. Worst first sentence. Hokey. and by the way, we all have a connection to God. “Modern music’s… contemporary songs” is redundant. “Most moving,” “upbeat” and “enormous success.” –not the catchiest

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