See Things Differently
Burnlounge is only available in the US currently, but provides a very interesting business model which is worth being aware of. On the one hand, it’s a ‘traditional’ digital download store – they have licensed 2m tracks and sell them as either Windows Media or MP3 files for $0.99. Where they differ is the ability for anyone to register and create their own store using a content management system. The new retailer can select artistes or genres they want to specialise in, then promote the store and make commission on everything sold. Nice idea…
However, the downsides are the Burnlounge website is very clunky and requires large Flash downloads before you get started. You also have to pay $14.99 per month to have a retail store, so you have to be confident you’re going to sell a minimum of content each period – remember, the commission is not going to be large. Finally, the tracks are predominantly WMA files, so as a retailer you’re only appealing to the very small percentage of people who buy downloads in this format (only 5% of people pay for downloads and only 10% of those are in WMA).
So, summary – nice idea but needs to be far more user friendly – for both retailers and consumers – before it will take off.