Mapping Your Electronic Drums Easily for Midi

 

One of the keys to getting a quality electronic drum take is for the musician to have a good feel on the kit. Is she hearing the snare nuisances envisioned?  Does her hi-hat foot create just the right wash?  While Steven Slate Drums does an exceptional job out of the box when mapping your Roland kit. Sometimes, things can be “out-of-whack.” You will likely need to re-map your MIDI notes To fix that snare sound that isn’t triggering… the ride that sounds like a splash… etc.

 

Here is a “down and dirty” way to achieve these results right from the Roland Drum head.

 

Using Venue Math to Find Your Baseline

I wanted to demonstrate how data, research, and math can help venue managers and marketers book concerts.

 

 

To do that, I took research on music adoption from The Verge and consumer behavior experts. Then, applied some rudimentary math skills to demonstrate how one could likely pinpoint eras of music that would better align with a concert venue’s marketing strategy.

 

Works Cited:

Ong, T. (2018, February 12). Our musical tastes peak as teens, says study. Retrieved from https://www.theverge.com/2018/2/12/17003076/spotify-data-shows-songs-teens-adult-taste-music

Solomon, M. R. (2019). Consumer Behavior: Buying, Having, and Being (12th ed.). Hoboken, NJ: Pearson.

 

 

The Psychological Importance of Brand Parity

Differentiating your product, service, or brand is not only good.  It is imperative.  However, the marketer should not overlook the psychological importance of establishing brand parity before engaging in this practice.

 

In his book Predictably Irrational, Dan Ariely discusses the consumer behavior of herding. His theory is built upon decades of research which reinforces that, when making decisions, buyers need a point of reference from which to weigh their options. We rarely blindly pick that new car or cup of coffee.  Rather, when considering a purchase, our subconscious is weighing the opportunity in front of us against our history with, and what we have learned about, the choice in question. Inexperienced marketers will forget that regardless of how new or radically different the product is, the customer needs to weigh it against like options to complete their decision. This is where brand parity comes in.

 

Brand parity is the attributes that all products of a specific classification share. Soda comes in 12oz cans.  Cellphones include a charger and loaves of bread come with a twist-tie.  These elements are of strategic importance for a number of reasons. Perhaps the most vital is that they set-up your product for proper differentiation. I will borrow Ariely Starbucks’ example to explain.

 

Anyone who has visited both a Dunkin’ Donuts and Starbucks knows that the two differ on many levels. Dunkin’ is a transactional business. Stores are designed for the customer to get a cup of Joe and get out. Sizes are easily labeled as Small, Medium, Large, and Extra-large. The ambiance is bright. The chairs uncomfortable and there is an overall “cafeteria” vibe throughout.  Starbucks is designed for customers to hang out. Their stores are characterized by deeper-earthy tones. Lighting is soft and subtle. Customers are surrounded by expensive cups, grinders, and coffees they can buy to take home. Even the product sizes are labeled uniquely as Short, Tall, Grande, and Venti.

 

Regardless of these differences, the core product of both of these brands – the coffee remains similar. Both organizations serve theirs fresh, extremely hot, and provide basic accouterments to enhance the taste such as cream, sugar, and sweetener. Both serve their java with lids and offer drive-through service.  It is this brand parity that helped Starbucks slip into the coffee game and then initiate the power of its product differentiation genius.

 

It may be hard to remember the first time you visited a Starbucks. If you can, you would probably recall it as a little overwhelming. I still have trouble remembering which size coffee I get. Is it the venti or the grande? However, when faced with that initial decision. You likely (even if you didn’t realize it) weighed the Starbucks’ option in front of you against something you knew. As an East-Coaster myself, that was Dunkin’. Since the Starbuck’s option was close enough. I mean it’s still just coffee, right? You were probably like me and gave them a shot.

 

Now that Starbucks’ brand parity with Dunkin’ has done its job to get you through the door it is time for the company to separate themselves with cohesive differentiation. This is when a company aligns all of their branding, packaging, and overall feel in a way that places them in a certain price range relative to their competition. For Starbucks, that position is “premium,” so they have aligned their brand pieces in a way to promote that ideal. The ordering process is refined and “classy.” Patrons ask for a “Venti” as opposed to an “Extra Large.” Customers are placed in a nicer atmosphere that encourages them to hang-out and pen their next screenplay. (This consequently increases the feeling that one needs to “pay rent” to stay longer and contributes to increased revenue per visit). When seated, patrons are surrounded by expensive cups, grinders, and coffees.

 

All of these elements work together to shift the consumer’s perception of where Starbucks sits in relation to other options such as Dunkin’. You still know that both Starbucks and Dunkin sell coffee and can give you that morning pick me up. However, the cohesive elevated experience you found at Starbucks has pushed it further away from your relative experience at Dunkin. It has now become harder for you to see them as similar and you lean towards one or the other moving forward.

 

The thing to keep in mind is that none of this differentiation would work without first establish brand parity. Your prospects need a reason to “jump ship” and check out your option. If you present yourself as too different… too radical, you will confuse them and they are more prone to stick with what is known. However, if you can find that unique balance between brand parity and differentiation. You too could become the Venti of your product world.

 

 

Jousts, Right Hands, and Consumer Behavior

 

The following is a postulation I developed after attending a joust at a Renaissance Festival. I noticed something interesting about the crowd and their disproportionate nature at the venue. More data collection and analysis would be needed to prove my theories, but there may be an opportunity for venue owners to consider these two elements of social behavior.

 

Claquing and Social Behavior During the Concert Experience.

 

In 1820 Paris opera fans Sauton and Porcher started a unique business.  For a fee, they would attend your opera and applaud at a designated time during the performance. This became known as claquing.

 

Le claqueur by Honoré Daumier, 1842.

 

The venture was so profitable that the duo expanded and by 1830 claquing had become a key part to the operatic experience. Teams of claques were established that included a chef de claque leading a team of claquers with additional options. There was the pleureuse, who would weep on cue and the bisseur who would belt out encore as the show ended.

 

Seems kind of ridiculous doesn’t it.  After all, opera is such a refined craft in live entertainment. Why would they resort to such antics?

 

Quite simply, it works.

 

As author Robert B. Cialdini, Ph.D. points out in his book Influence – The Psychology of Persuasion. Claquing, much like laugh tracks during sitcoms, creates a social call-and-response. One in which the stimuli. E.g. the claquer lets other opera-goers know. “Hey, now is the time to clap.” Running off of his cue (and that reaffirming positive stimuli) clap…or boo… or scream “encore” they do.

 

While claquing has all but faded from the operatic experience its far-reaching superpowers can still be witnessed at nearly every live concert you attend. Look around as the band finishes their last song. At this point, many people are wondering “should I stand and applaud?” They survey the other patrons and may notice someone a few rows away rise. Still unsure, they remain seated. However, as the rising crowd encroaches their position something changes. What was a question of “should I stand and applaud” turns to “what will those around me think if I don’t?”

 

Social influence at its finest.

 

Claquing demonstrates to us that we aren’t really in total control when within these large social situations.  In a previous post, I discussed positive stimuli response and how vital it is during our decision-making process. Dr. Cialdini reminds us that positive stimuli response is so important in a situation such as a concert where we are out of our comfort zones that these stimuli produce (as he calls it) click, whirr moments where we instinctively follow the crowd. This is an important social behavior lesson for operations managers because it gives us insight into how we can use the crowd to create more profitability in our venues. In that same post, I talked about the “see a beer… want a beer” phenomenon. Where concert goers will increasingly move towards the decision to purchase a beer as more people within their proximity hold a frosty brew. If operations managers look for ways to motivate pockets of consumers in highly visible areas to purchase they could reap big rewards. Say, for instance, if a small pocket of scattered patrons the second tier up in the center are sent a mobile coupon for $2 off their beer purchase for the next fifteen minutes. Enough will scurry across their aisle and down or up the steps to the vendor. On the return trip, they are displaying their beer in hand and with it gaining the attention of a collection of consumers looking for a positive stimuli response to go grab a brew. It is quite likely that $2 off bet could pay off big thanks to a click, whirr moment.

 

Regardless if you are claquing for applause or pushing for more beer sales, social behavior is a powerful strategy in the concert space. Find ways to enact social responses and you could see profitability rise.