Money makes the world go round. In a situation like ours today, many customers are skipping out on the un-necessary expenses and going to the bare minimum. As of now, satellite radio has an unfounded image as being more expensive than free radio or even than itunes and other MP3 services. Sirius XM must do something to change that image.
The answer lies in a battle they fought, and lost, against the RIAA. Sirius launched the Sirius S50 with the goal of allowing it to schedule recordings of songs in advance. With such high quality songs being downloadable legally and for free, RIAA stepped in to push legislation banning “high-quality” recordings of radio songs. An appalling irony, as RIAA is suggesting it is okay to record low-quality radio, instead of trying to ban all radio recording outright. At any rate, in the legal battle that ensued, Sirius eventually was forced to make concessions. The Sirius S50 launched, but not in the earth shattering way it could have. Only shows, like Martha Stewart or Howard Stern could be recorded in advance. Songs, had to be recorded manually as you listened to them. Yet how is that any different from when the average joe used to pop in a cassette to record songs from the radio? It’s not. Sirius must have given up, because they have a gold mine on their hand and they have not made any proper marketing attempts, perhaps out of fear from the RIAA.
For now, people who are worried about money, may not be willing to dish out monthly fees for a radio service. But if Sirius XM were to properly advertise products such as the S50 as allowing them to record high-quality songs for free and legally, they would see a massive boom to their sales. Sirius XM must have given up after having to remove the scheduling aspect of recording songs, and might be afraid that the RIAA would take offense to that type of marketing. But if they don’t want satellite radio to die out in the face of a potentially global economic collapse, Sirius XM must advertise the cost-saving aspect of their service. People would then look at the hundreds of dollars on satellite radio equipment as being an investment that would save them money in the long run. The savings for many typical iTunes or other users of expensive downloading services, should they decide to cut out their massive iTunes bill and switch to listening to Sirius XM radio and recording the songs they like, can be in the thousands of dollars. Sirius XM could even run advertising showing some teenager crying when they get that thousand dollar bill from iTunes. There certainly is a situation to exploit there, given the current economic circumstances. For Sirius XM to survive, it is the only option.