Today we speak to Jim Sanders, Director of Business Development at Ochre.
Ochre is a powerful D2C technology platform running artists and labels direct-to-consumer ecommerce operations. In addition, Ochre offers warehousing and store management services, providing a flexible set of tools for music companies.
Over the past 15 years I’ve worked at various digital music companies including 7digital, Deezer and Vevo implementing business development strategies to help grow their businesses.
I joined Ochre in March 2019 on an exciting journey just as the music industry began to adopt the technology we’ve built to optimise its D2C retail, marketing and operations.
We’ll often be working directly with managers to give them complete control and flexibility over their artists retail business. And sometimes indirectly, by instead giving access to data and other features from artist stores run by their label or merch partners where those stakeholders are using Ochre for their e-commerce solution.
This year I’ve really loved Laura Marling “Song For Our Daughter” and Fontaines DC “A Hero’s Death”. Partisan Records label store is run on the platform, so it was very satisfying to see lots of these records being sold via Ochre.
Also, with the recent lack of gigs and festivals, Nick Cave’s Idiot Prayer live streamed performance at Ally Pally was a big highlight.
Business has been good as a lot of retail has moved online, although many larger release campaigns have been pushed back to next year.
Our overall services have not been affected or changed significantly, but there are lots of people wanting to scale up their D2C quickly and we have been able to help them do this.
D2C remains one of the few revenue streams that an artist can be in complete control of and so in recent challenging times we’ve seen various positive and creative reactions to the situation from limited merch drops creating brand new revenue streams, launches of online stores to sell stock manufactured for cancelled tours, through to clients running fundraising projects in support of talent and other great causes throughout lockdown.
Managers have been taking on more and more responsibility in recent years and working directly with Ochre allows our clients to retain strategic control over important areas. When this happens with D2C there’s often a real impact on the success of that artist store.
When a manager and therefore the artist is closely involved in decisions over their own retail brand and product offerings this always leads to more transactions outside of the traditional music release cycle, which can have a huge impact on an artists overall income.
There are a couple of things that spring to mind. We work with Dan Jenkins at Raw Power Management on their artist store for Don Broco and I love the effort they put into lookbook style fashion photo shoots for each merch drop. It’s much more engaging for fans, it also shows that they care about this stuff and really get their audience.
Also, we’ve very recently begun a project with Candy Artists who have taken a refreshing approach which will see them launch and run multiple artist stores for their entire roster of acts including Dream Wife, Our Girl, Willie J Healey, Dry Cleaning and more. Taking this strategic decision to become retailers operating multiple stores is a very smart move and will benefit from many long term efficiencies created.
Since March we’ve been working with a number of clients to create a solid long term retail set up, rather than something that is simply reacting to the current changes and so these positive initiatives will definitely help those businesses thrive well beyond the current pandemic.
Take a look at some of the amazing clients we work with and their unique approach to D2C marketing and retail.
But more importantly say hello! I’m always happy to hop on a call, share my screen to demo the platform and talk through how other clients are working with us.
Thank you Jim and Ochre for supporting the MMF and our membership through our Associates programme.
You can contact Jim at firstname.lastname@example.org