Everyone is so hung up on the concept of free. It's the cover story on Wired Magazine. Radiohead might have changed the game with their pay as you go (or free) download model. Trent Reznor also launched his latest effort as a free download (although it was only 9 of the 36 tracks that were offered for free.)
I'm a fan of this model. I think ad supported music has a shot. One of my biggest clients is working to support himself on tour with an ad supported blog. I also think options are key as well and NIN proved that it can be done.
I was actually importing some AdSense on this blog (sorry folks) and I came across a very surprising ad, one that I actually clicked on.
There is a band, Torman Maxt, originally from Ft. Meyers and recently located in LA that is taking the concept of free to a new level. They are using PPC advertising to drive traffic to their site that is giving their music away for free. Granted, I am sure that they are spending pennies per click, but in essence they are spending money to give something away for free.
I tried to contact the band but have gotten no response. Their website is not revolutionary and their social networking presence isn't top notch. This is a curious case study and hopefully I will be able to talk to the band soon to see some of the analytics behind the AdWords move.
I would love to know what everyone thinks of this move and the whole Free model that is going on.
Oh and go download the Torman Maxt CD, it's free. They deserve the plug for their attempt at this model.
Have a great weekend and please open up the comment threads. Could be a great discussion.