Beyonce’s surprise album carpet-bombing is undeniably old-school in some ways: Seriously, Bey? You expect us to buy a whole album? But releasing the album digitally, and on the biggest music store in the world, sent an undeniable message. And it’s one Target didn’t want to hear.
Target found her album to be a surprise, and not a pleasant one. So it’s not selling her album, according to the Daily Dot:
“At Target we focus on offering our guests a wide assortment of physical CDs and when a new album is available digitally before it is available physically, it impacts demand and sales projects,” a spokesperson tells us. “While there are many aspects that contribute to our approach and we have appreciated partnering with Beyoncé in the past, we are primarily focused on offering CDs that will be available in physical format at the same time as all other formats.”
We’ll let Emma Stone take this one:
That said, it’s not hard to see Target’s position. You put an album exclusively on one store or another to give them a sales advantage, and honestly, it’s not a good time to be selling CDs right now. Physical album sales dropped by nearly 13% last year, and it seems likely that another double digit drop is in the cards as 2013 wraps up. For Target, CDs are a loss leader, but this is just reinforcing the loss.
Of course, we’re sure that eventually a large retailer and a potentially enormous source of income will eventually work together again. After all, it’s the season of hope.