Four Lessons From Taylor Swift’s Latest Hit Record

October 31, 2014 4:44 PM

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Avoid Spotify. Swift and Big Machine, her independent record label, chose not to release 1989 on Spotify, the leading streaming music service, forcing her loyalists to purchase the record. Predictably, Spotify has argued that Swift has treated a large number of her fans shabbily. “There are over 40 million music fans on Spotify and Taylor Swift has nearly 2 million active followers [on the music service] who will be disappointed by this decision,” a Spotify spokesman told Mashable. “We are working to bring this album to fans on Spotify as soon as possible.” Perhaps, but Swift and her label did the same thing for several months with Red, her last release, and it sold 1.2 million copies in the first week, too. Why alter a winning formula?

Don’t forsake retail. In the weeks before 1989’s debut, Swift appeared in a stylish Target (TGT) advertisement, hawking a special edition of the album with three extra songs and three “songwriting voice memos.” It’s paying off. Billboard reports that in the first two days 1989 was on sale, Swift mov...

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