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Building a Buzz

May 8, 2007

As a long time Beastie Boys fan, I have known about their upcoming instrumental album relased at the end of June for sometime now. But how does one of the more unique bands that have released 6 albums, a couple of compilations, and several EPs over the last 25 years create a buzz for the new album? Well one of the first steps is send out an email to your websites database, in text format with the Subject Line, “FYI” and 4 lines of text of 5 words (It’s About To Go Down “and then a link to the site.
Once you get to the website, there is no big Banner about an upcoming album release date, no “Message From the Band,” just a completely redesigned all black page with an image to click on in the middle of the page, and 3 links at the bottom. When you click on the main image, it starts what appears to be part 1 of 7 of a story that is shot in black and white and has no dialogue (its an instrumental) and then thats it. The site practically begging you to come back and get the next part of the story.
Another band that has been around for a while, Nine Inch Nails had a highly successful Viral Internet Campaign to create a buzz about their album, “Year Zero” over the last couple months, complete with different websites set up to promote the album. Trent Reznor was quoted as saying, “”The term ‘marketing’ sure is a frustrating one for me at the moment. What you are now starting to experience IS ‘year zero’. It’s not some kind of gimmick to get you to buy a record – it IS the art form… and we’re just getting started. Hope you enjoy the ride.” Despite that statement, you have to believe that it was partially motivated to build a buzz for the album, considering the other things they did to build a buzz including purposely leaving USB drives in bathrooms of some of their concerts.
What the Beastie Boys next steps in promoting “the Mix Up” are a mystery, but if you can expect one thing from the Beastie Boys, its well, you can’t expect anything. This may be the last promotion of the album, or the first of many interactive tools.