Saturday, October 04, 2008

Sales Report

By the way, guys, I haven't given a sales report in a while.

2 weeks ago was the first week we dipped under 1k sold (983) in the over 4 months that the album has been out, and this last week it popped back over, slow but steady. 

For the year, we're at a little over 33k.  The label and management thinks that by the end of the year, we'll be at 50k!  And "Arise" isn't expected to make significant headway until after Christmas!  When "Arise" takes off (hopefully) and then the third single comes out, it will (again, hopefully) continue to drive sales.  By the time, the 2nd album comes out, I think it's comfortable to say 100k will be a great goal and 150k isn't out of reach!

Also, we're still neck and neck with Tenth Ave North for best-selling new artist in the Christian genre.


risalea said...

Well, sales would be a heck of a lot better if folks could find it in the stores! Just Friday afternoon, my JL friend, Nancy, called me from Walmart asking where to look for the CD, because she couldn't find it. (I've never been able to find it in there.) Of course, I had a "few" on hand to help her out, and because of what she's planning, I gave her one, but I'd much rather of her been able to find it and purchase it. What do we need to do to get it in the stores??? 'Cause I can call Bentonville! These folks are hearing "Empty Me" all over K-Love and then they can't find it in the stores.

Nicholas said...

For some reason I thought "running back to you" was a target exclusive but I could be wrong. It's great to hear "Arise" is not expected to make headway until after Christmas, I was starting to get worried it would not have success. Speaking of Christmas, when do you think the 3 song Christmas EP you mentioned will be out?

Hischild said...

It's REALLY good to know you're right up there in sales w/best selling Christian artist. I was starting to worry that with so many good new artists out you'd get buried and maybe not be nominated for a Dove. This news made me very happy.

risalea said...

I'm sorry, I sounded like Grumpy Gus. It's just been frustrating to me not to see "Running Back to You" in the stores around here (including Target) except at Mardel's, the Christian bookstore. I think your numbers are phenomenal, especially since I believe folks are having to actively look for it...I still think your distributors whoever they may be need to get on the stick! (IMHO) Oh, and you got another station add. KURB (B98) plays 90's and today's light rock, but has a contemporary Christian Sunday morning show with Jeff Matthews, and he added "Empty Me" last week. Somebody gave him a CD. : )

Speaking of the Doves (thank you, Clarissa for the segue), there are a few of us planning to make the trip to Nashville if Chris gets nominated for best new artist. Anybody up for a road trip with us?

Carrie said...


Risa, the CD isn't really available around here that I've seen either so don't feel bad. I already know you've been doing your part in handing out your "few" CDs!

I think in order to see the CD around more stores there will have to be a mainstream single that REALLY has a lot of hype to it. I wouldn't worry too much, though. Everyone I know these days buys their music from iTunes.

Cathy Storms said...

You can't find it in California either. Even at Target..

Chris, these numbers are really awesome. I'm really excited for you.

Road trip to Nashville for the Dove awards. That would be so awesome!!!!
I really need to move closer....

TimeYUPunishMe said...

Hi Chris,

How are you? Just dropping by to say I'm still alive but hardly kicking.

I already left California when your CD was released. I guess I have to ask someone in Sacramento to buy a copy for me.

Have a great day.


DJ in AL said...

I totally agree, I don't know who is responsible for getting the CD's in the stores, but they are no where to be found in B'ham.

Thank goodness for the store called Risa's Car, or some folks would have missed getting it, lol!

DJ in AL said...

Oh, and Chris, glad sales are tracking well!

Sorry forgot to say that...if you're happy, I'm happy.

Anonymous said...

What is with the distribution of the CD?
I've never seen it in a store, including Target, when I've took time to actively look. In this area, relying on Christian Bookstore sales is rather meager availability as there are exceedingly few.

A internet search reveals that Brash Music is distributed by ADA (The Alternative Distribution Alliance), a company almost wholly (95%) owned by WMG (Warner Music Group), which in theory, means it should be as available as anything released on Warner Bros, Elektra and Atlantic Records* and their distributed labels.


*i.e. Fleetwood Mac, The Doors, and Aretha Franklin, to use high profile examples.

Hischild said...

I long to go to the Dove Awards EVERY year (and have never made it). Now of course there's even MORE incentive if Chris is nominated. I just don't see me being able to make a trip in April AND a trip in the summer for the picnic. I am horrified that I would have to choose one over the other! The way our retirement funds are flying down the drain, I probably won't be able to make even one trip. But I'm holding out hope -which has NOTHING to do with Obama. ha ha

risalea said...

Clarissa, I've decided my goal is to leave NO inheritance for anyone! (in fact, the way my little Edward Jones accounts have been hit, I'm well on my way to meeting that goal. LOL) Well, if you have to choose, I'd definitely choose the picnic....(and you must come back for that!) I couldn't possibly do both if I wasn't in driving distance. Won't it be exciting though, if he gets nominated? I wonder how early those come out with the Doves in April?

Hischild said...

Risa, you make me laugh. Ya gotta laugh to keep from crying I guess.

Thanks for the advice on deciding which trip to set my sights on. I'll take that into consideration.

I searched the net several months ago to try to find out when the nominations are announced and didn't get anywhere. All I know now is the GMA week is Apr 18 - 22.
Assuming the awards are the last night. They have great festivities all week - concerts and workshops etc. We could have a BLAST!
If I find out any more I'll let ya know.

Badpacifist said...

They are not getting the CD to the stores. What exactly is their job when they help you make a CD? No offense Chris butin your biggest fans minds whoever is responsible for this part of your career, well frankly, they suck. I hope they are reading this! As a guy with his own business I would find new help in this area.

ChrisSligh said...

The problem with distribution is that you have to give retail a reason to buy your product. Because I chose to go into Christian music, most of my distribution is going to be in the Christian bookstores. Most Christian bookstores have multiple copies in stock.

Unfortunately, as much as I would like it to be so (and it seems you would too) the mainstream retail outlets just aren't that interested in most Christian CDs unless they are selling tons of records in the CBA market and "crossover" to the CCM market.

I actually HAVE sold incredibly well on the mainstream side. For instance, Aaron Shust's mainstream sales are at something under 5%. My mainstream sales are at a little over 25%. For a Christian act, that's actually really, really high.

So, even though, it's not everywhere we'd like it to be, it has sold well in the mainstream. We're hoping that if sales can get up to the 100k mark or so, that we can use that as leverage to do more mainstream marketing. Then, if that can happen, the 2nd album will benefit from those relationships.

Another thing to put things in perspective. Chris Tomlin didn't sell significant amounts of records until his 3rd album, which finally gave him a ton of radio - I think he had 4 top 5 singles. His first 4-5 years, outside of the Passion circuit, he couldn't make any headway. Then, his 3rd album took off, sold platinum, his 4th sold gold and this album has already sold 250k.

It's just a slow build. We're sitting pretty right now. It's about having realistic expectations for myself. It's frustrating to know that 5 years ago, my sales probably would've been double, maybe even triple what they are right now. Sheesh, a year ago, Mandisa's first single didn't have the traction that "Empty Me" has had and she sold 17k first week and is sitting at 132k now. Granted, she's with a major Christian label that spent a TON of money on marketing her, whereas my label has spent very little (which is actually good considering, I end up paying for half of everything). I'll make probably double on selling 60-70k than Mandisa has made off of all her sales. And ultimately, numbers aren't incredibly important if you're not making money working your tail off.

So, hopefully that explains stuff.


risalea said...

Chris said: The problem with distribution is that you have to give retail a reason to buy your product.

Well, when and if you think that your fanbase who also happen to be consumers at these retail outlets (as in I probably should just sign my check over to Walmart/Sam's between the groceries and the gasoline!)should give these folks a reason, let us know. I'm a firm believer in writing companies and letting them know when you see something that needs to be changed, and in this economy, I think companies are open to suggestions. : ) Thanks for the explanation.

Anonymous said...

Hey Chris, and everybody--
The Walmart in town here has a pretty healthy, if unpredictable and eclectic group of Christian albums in it's section. Problem is, you never know what they are going to have. TobyMac had a big ole display when ALIVE came out, but other than that, it's catch as catch can.

We do have like THREE Christian book stores in Bowling Green, which is crazy IMO. Vying for the same dollars, right? Haven't been in any as yet, altho I figure going may end up expensive...

Congrats on the continues good selling of the album! 1K continues the album's viablity as we know, and the expectation of a new single will make people happy. I'm surprised you don't have another out there for Fall already. I like your positive tone about all the album plans! :-) It's really great, to expect positive things to rain down.

I love Mandisa in general, but not enough to buy the album, which samples sound a little blah to me. She seems like she was trying too-hard on that album, and I like it better when she just let's it go, you know? (Loved her on Idol, and pulling for her now too.)

Thanks for the Update. I have gotten a good response on the videos I featured of you, this week on MS. People still love your voice. :-)

Cathy Storms said...

Risa~I agree with you on leaving no inheritance. I tell them it's for their own good so their will be no fighting.(sorry Audra)..

Chris~Couldn't they do a test on your CD and put some in targets, walmarts, etc..just to see how they do? I think everyone would be very surprised (well not us) at how well it would do. How are the sales on Itunes?
Do you think most people buy most of their CD's from Itunes now instead of in a store?

Personally, I do both. I like to have a copy of the CD because I love to read everything in it. I buy it from Itunes if I'm not going out for a couple of days and can't wait for the CD.

Hischild said...

Hey Bully,
I gotta testify for Mandisa's True Beauty. I absolutely LOVE that CD! Every track is excellent (w/the exception of the title track she wrote herself). Too rap-ish for me. Contrived rhyming.

I recommend you give it a few more listens. It'll get you up on your feet and dancing (even if you're a former Baptist, like me). :o)

EmilyBoo said...

Re: Dove nominee announcements. A quick google told me that this year's nominees were announced on Feb. 15. According to this PDF of the Dove Awards policy manual, the date for next year is not set yet, but it looks to be mid- February again.

gdahimself said...

It' still curious that the CD isn't at Target, who has a Christian Music section, and has had adverts for it. The ones available were largely on EMI distributed labels, not many from WMG.

risalea said...

From Foxes on Idol-Idol Chartwatch: Chris Sligh’s Running Back to You had a nice little bounce, moving up nine spots to #41on Top Christian Albums and #49 on Top Christian and Gospel Albums.

Bounces are good!

Hischild said...

Emily,Thanks for the nomination info.  Seems a reasonable amount of time before the awards. Won't we have a blast here when Chris is listed there? 

Susan said...

I rarely ever go shopping, so I don't know if the CD is available in our Wal-Mart or Target. Maybe I should try to go look. I bought 3 copies at our local Christian book store. I gave two as gifts to youth. I'm thinking of buying another copy as a gift to our youth director. It would make a great Christmas present.

Hischild said...

Just got back from my local Wal-Mart. I don't go very often. They had a small Christian section but they had 2 RBTY's behind something else. SO, I moved them to the front of two rows for visibilities sake. Just doing my small Fro Patro part!

EmilyBoo said...

I bought RBTY at target when it came out. I haven't checked recently to see if they have it.

risalea said...

You, go Clarissa!

Cathy Storms said...

Way to go Clarissa!!

I can see you rearranging the CD section to make sure Chris was up front, where he belongs....

Hischild said...

Ha! Thanks for the encouragement ladies. I really wished I had something like neon stickers to put on them. They could blink the word "excellence" or something like that!

bmorebamma said...

arise is getting plenty of airplay here in bmore on wrbs.

Vicki said...

I watched your season of AI and never forgot your powerful voice or your curly hair! I am a Sirius satellite radio subscriber and hear you on the Spirit channel all the time. I just went to Wal-mart and bought your CD and love it! I have no clue what the next song to be released is, but I must tell you one of my favorites is "In A Moment"... it gives me goose bumps.

Your fan,