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It looks like more and more marketing is shifting to the virtual realm of Second Life. The latest is a T-Shirt design competition for rock band Seether that will be hosted in a virtual area there.

That in its own is pretty cool. There is one caveat though.

If you’re marketing to members of Second Life, you are by default eliminating anyone outside that realm. This seriously narrows down your impact group. You’re also completely eliminating those of us who live in a “bandwidth poor” country.

Let me explain. Seether is the offshoot of a South African band “Saron Gas”. By offshoot, I mean they changed their name and got two new permanent members – same songs, same lead singer, same guitarist. Saron Gas/Seether is by far one of the most adored rock acts in South Africa.

I suspect Seether in South Africa may even have the highest popularity per capita of any country.

Second Life apparently eats up bandwidth. Bandwidth in South Africa is massively expensive. It’s not too difficult to surmise that Second Life probably has the lowest per capita membership from South Africa.

So you’ve got a dedicated, committed audience that loves a band, and what do you do? You ignore them and exclude them.

Broken marketing.

Of course Seether has many many other fans worldwide, and are largely regarded as an American band, but we know where they came from – we right here in SA paid to watch them play, to keep them going, and supported them by buying their first album. Its only a stupid T-Shirt Design thing, but I still feel a little cheated.

So how do we fix this? Do we stop exploring virtual realms and opportunities? Do we laugh and turn our focus away from the problem? Do we keep pining away at Telkom’s door for cheaper bandwidth?

No, we take out an ad and give Telkom the finger!!

In the meantime, record companies, stop excluding and start paying attention to your audience.

 

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