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Giving out tracks on custom USB drives - anyone done it?

Discussion in 'Band Management [BG]' started by Son of Wobble, Mar 16, 2014.

  1. Son of Wobble

    Son of Wobble

    Mar 8, 2010
    Just curious whether anyone has made USB promotional items such as bracelets, and if so, how they were received. Fan-friendly format?

    Some USBs are in a flat "key style" and would make for cheap direct mailing projects. Any thoughts?
  2. Helaskold

    Helaskold 100% Mediocre

    Jul 22, 2012
    Austin, TX
    Pretty cool idea, but I feel like I am much more likely to pop in a demo CD someone gave me and listen to it on the drive home than I am to get home and load something off a USB onto my computer and then listen to it instead of doing whatever else I was gonna do at home.

    In other words: The CD would probably get listened to where the USB drive might not. If they are for people that are already fans who you know will use the USB, that's an entirely different story.
  3. Son of Wobble

    Son of Wobble

    Mar 8, 2010
    Good point. In other threads, people have mentioned "playing the CD in the car" after picking up music at a gig as their most likely means of consumption. I guess part of the implication of your advice is that people are gonna wanna hear the recording while the live experience is still fresh - but once the band is out of sight, it is more than likely out of mind.
    Thanks for the response, welcome others!
  4. TinyE


    Jan 31, 2013
    Things are changing though. My new truck doesn't have a CD player but it does have a USB port
  5. Son of Wobble

    Son of Wobble

    Mar 8, 2010
    There you go. Well, as with the waning of DVD in favor of streaming, we are definitely in the middle of a "crossover period." Makes it confusing as to where the finish line is when it keeps moving...
  6. A USB stick would be my preferred medium (and I'm an old git).

    When I buy a CD I rip it to my hard drive, put it back in it's case and store it away. I stopped playing CDs about 8 years ago when my car auto-changer packed up.
  7. slipknotmaggot3


    Feb 23, 2014
    Actually my band uses them, we kinda sell them a bit high as they have some extra stuff on it, aside from that, they go over well as they have both albums and some of our unreleased stuff as well. I personally say it's a great medium, and on the plus side, fans get all the music in a handy MP3 format so they don't have to rip it from the CD. We only do the thumb sticks though, nothing fancy like the bracelets or necklace ones.
  8. fdeck

    fdeck Supporting Member Commercial User

    Mar 20, 2004
    Madison WI
    HPF Technology LLC
    I'd be afraid of picking up malware from a USB drive.
  9. lowfreqgeek


    Mar 15, 2010
    Albuquerque, NM
    Endorsing Artist: Regenerate Guitar Works, Honey Badger Pickups, Westone Audio
    Go talk to Steve Lawson. He's been doing this for a long time. Seems to work for him.
  10. That, and USB drives cost more than CD's.
  11. el murdoque

    el murdoque

    Mar 10, 2013
    It's a supernice idea for a giveaway.

    My car supports USB as well as CD, but i hardly ever listen to CDs.
    It's just a lot easier to have 50 CDs on a stick that won't get scratched or have issues with sunlight.

    I just googled a bit and found that with pressed CDs there is a minimum of around 250 per order, in my area that's about €600,- without any bling (black jewelcase, 4 color print on cd and inlay (inlaycard, no booklet). If you spend twice as much, you get a metal, key shaped USB drive with laser etching.
    That's a lot more cash to spend, but if you think on the benefits, that is tempting:

    -you can place the files on the drive manually. When you recorded new stuff, just put it on the drives you have left, you can edit them with no cost and there's no need to produce a new CD.

    -the buyer gets something more for his money - a cool gadget to have on his keychain once he got the files into his computer and there's your bandname and logo on it.
  12. EddiePlaysBass


    Feb 26, 2009
    With my previous band, I pitched the idea after we recorded a demo. It was shot down due to costs, but I still like the idea.
  13. Marial

    Marial weapons-grade plum

    Apr 8, 2011
    Beat me to it.
  14. CD-R or even memory cards would probably be cheaper.
  15. +1. Yeah me too.
  16. Ender_rpm


    Apr 18, 2004
    St. Louis MO
    We pondered going that route for our demo, but were talked out of it by our engineer/producer. I'd still like to make it happen one day. Especially for board recordings.
  17. Ukiah Bass

    Ukiah Bass Supporting Member

    May 10, 2006
    The only USB drive I'd stick in my computer was a brand new one, seal-wrapped by the factory. Too much risk of malware, even unsuspectingly deposited onto the device.
  18. Mvilmany


    Mar 13, 2013
    Upstate NY
    People still use cd's?
  19. I still like vinyl - but most probably use mp3 files.
  20. +1. Yup.