Wednesday, January 30, 2008

CD Baby

You’ve probably heard about CD Baby. It’s a local company devoted to selling music online. Particularly independent music, the kind that won’t see the major retailer's store shelves.

My friend’s band, Fuzzball, just released a CD and CD Baby has it. I ordered it last week and it arrived yesterday. I have to admit, the shopping experience on CD Baby was unlike any online shopping I’ve ever done.

It started with the CD being out of stock. So they allow you to input your email and they notify you when it arrives for sale. Here was the email:

It's back in stock now. You're the first to know.

It just got here an hour ago.We can send it to you in tomorrow morning's mail. Just click this link:


This appears to be a company about the little touches. They probably send that same email to everyone but it didn’t feel like it to me. Impressions, turns out they matter. It’s not that their interface was better or easier to use (although it was easy) it’s the confirmation emails that I received that made me smile and appreciate this company. This one came to me from the sender “CD Baby Loves Bruce”:

Bruce -Thanks for your order with CD Baby!

This is just a happy
automated email to let you know a real person will email you as soon as your
package is sent, and you will also receive a paper receipt with your order in
the mail.

Please save this email in case you have any questions about your

And the final email from them:

Your CD has been gently taken from our CD Baby shelves with sterilized
contamination-free gloves and placed onto a satin pillow.

A team of 50 employees inspected your CD and polished it to make sure it was
in the best possible condition before mailing.

Our packing specialist from Japan lit a candle and a hush fell over the crowd
as he put your CD into the finest gold-lined box that money can buy.

We all had a wonderful celebration afterwards and the whole party marched
down the street to the post office where the entire town of Portland waved "Bon
Voyage!" to your package, on its way to you, inour private CD Baby jet on this
day, Wednesday, January 23rd.

I hope you had a wonderful time shopping at CD Baby. We sure did. Your
picture is on our wall as "Customer of the Year." We're all exhausted but can't
wait for you to come back to CDBABY.COM!!

Thank you, thank you, thank you!


--Derek Sivers, president, CD Baby

This is a company that deserves more of my business. In a world of increasing automation and ‘bots that do everything, it was nice to find a company that uses that technology creatively. They set a high expectation for me and have delivered.

Anyway, check out Fuzzball’s CD “The Last Umbrella Stand” It’s good power-pop with really interesting cover art and (shameless self-promotion) yours truly even got a shout out on the album thanks. That’s always a cool thing. It’s permanent. Like “Kilroy was here” or some such thing.



Mary Anne said...

That is awesome and very funny!

Mary Anne said...

p.s. I got on hoping for some Bruce perspective on your dad's party this last weekend. Is it coming by any chance? Would love to hear about it and see pictures if you took any!
Mary Anne