“This is to all the Guns N’ Roses Fans who stuck with us thro all the s*** ” – Axl Rose
I’ve been a hardcore Guns N’ Roses fan and I am joined by millions around the globe who await their new album in 17 years..Yeah, you read it right 17 years.
By the time the new GNR album, “Chinese Democracy” hits stores on Sunday, it will have been 17 years, two months and seven days since the last time GNR fans had a chance to buy a CD of new material.
When Axl finally emerged from the Rip Van Wrinkle studio he would have found that the world had changed.
Here’s what I mean :
- When the bands album “Use your illusion” 1 and 2 were realeased on September 17 th 1991, an unknown band called Nirvana was getting ready to launch an album called ‘Nevermind’ the following week. In other words Nirvana became a cult band , lead singer Kurt Cobain peaked, died and became nostalgia between the two GNR album releases.
- The Google guys were still 8 years before they met.
- Micheal Jackson was considered a good investment. Sony had just signed him to a contract for worth 1 billion.
- The biggest game system was SEGA, Sony’s playstation was still three years in the future.
- Apple was 12 years aways from making the iPod.
- There were no digital downloads, no Facebook , no Myspace, no American Idol.
- The world’s population was 5.7 billion. Its now 6.3 billion.
- The band itself split with Axl Rose controling the rights to the Gun N Roses brand.
- It was still 10 years before 9/11 change the world.
- There was a brutal recession in US and across the globe as stock markets tanked, partly because fighting a War in Iraq.
Ok, so not everything has changed.
What’s this got to do with an Internet Marketing Blog ?
- Chinese Democracy is an album that Axl Rose has been working on for over 10 years, it has become the most expensive albums of all times. After so many delays , leaks , band link up changes it’s hard to believe that this album will ever be released.
But we can certainly learn some marketing lessons from this one.
- Building anticipation works :
The anticipate build up used for this is worth mentioning, instead of waiting until the entire album was finished, the band strategicaly made announcements when the album was in its early stages, when new band members were found, and made good use of live shows to preview select few songs. If this was not done stratigically the band would not not impacted the anticipation build up for 17 years.
- Leveraging Technology and Internet to build anticipation :
No better marketing tool can be used than the internet to leak song footage online. While this was strategically done it would have been a disaster for the band if this was not supervised and authorized intentionally.
- Keeping the trust factor intact :
Most marketing companies go too far in anticipating the trust of their customers in the initial phase of the campaign. You need to know when to stop and when to go. I am sure that most GNR fans had given up hope waiting in anticipation about the release of this new album.
- Getting attention of the media and the marketplace :
The hype and aniticipate of the release of the album ensured that they were always in the news. Back in March, the Dr Pepper people said they would offer free fizzy stuff to everyone in US if Axl managed to launch the album in 2008. Back then the likelihood of see the release of Chinese Democracy on the shelves seemed remote.
But now the day has arrived and the company is not welching. Tony Jacobs, VP Marketing of Dr Pepper, said in a statement :”Dr Pepper’s on us ”
Begining this Sunday ( 23 rd November ) at 12.01 am, coupons for a free 20 ounce soda will be available for 24 hours on Dr Pepper’s website. Coupons will be honoured until 28 th February 2008.
The long awaited Chinese Democracy drops at Best Buy stores November 23 rd 2008 , but you can listen to the preview songs right here at Myspace.com/gunsnroses
Its received a record smashing 25 listens per second, Guns N’ Roses have not only completed their comeback, but they have had the largest ‘listening party’ in the world.
The release makes me feel nostalgic.