Iron Maiden is an iconic British heavy metal band formed in 1975 that has sold more than 85 million records around the world, despite being virtually ignored by radio and television. Instead, the band’s success is based on its live performances, which some aficionados say are among the best of the genre.

With a huge discography made up of studio recordings, live shows, EPs, DVDs, and compilations, it is little wonder that the band would be concerned about internet downloads. But instead of the usual approach to this supposed problem, Iron Maiden has done something much more intelligent, it has analyzed download data on P2P sites using MusicMetric, allowing it to establish which countries are home to its biggest fans. And instead of sending an army of lawyers to those countries, they have organized concert tours precisely there.

In recent years, after discovering that large numbers of people in Brazil, Venezuela, Mexico, Colombia, and Chile were downloading their music, the band decided to play a large number of concerts in South America. The result: packed stadiums and a notable popularity increase on social network sites like Twitter and Facebook.

Iron Maiden’s approach is by far the most intelligent way to deal with downloads: the band used download information to identify unmet demand for its music, converting fans who download its music into purchasers of two items that cannot be taken from the internet: concert tickets and merchandizing. As has been shown on many other occasions, those who take the trouble to download are usually the biggest fans and those who spend most money on music.

Sometimes, success is just a question of using your head


(En español, aquí)

Enrique Dans

On the effects of technology innovation on people, companies and society (writing in Spanish at enriquedans.com since 2003)

    Enrique Dans

    Written by

    Professor of Innovation at IE Business School and blogger at enriquedans.com

    Enrique Dans

    On the effects of technology innovation on people, companies and society (writing in Spanish at enriquedans.com since 2003)

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