Rihanna Released an Album and Now I Have Tidal aka Why You Should Give Away Free Content

Rihanna pink art

Let me start this post by saying I’ve never been a Rihanna fan. Now, before the #navy attacks me, I’ve never been anti-Rihanna…just never a fan enough to purchase music or follow along with what she’s up to (I do think she makes super catchy music, and I always find myself singing along when it plays on the radio). I’ll also toss in the fact that I wasn’t too keen on Jay-Z’s streaming service TIDAL for one reason or the other. Yet here I am at 11:38 PM bumping Rihanna’s freshly released ‘Anti’ album and browsing through TIDAL like it’s a Delia*s catalog and I’m in the early 2000s.

So what changed?

I was given a free sample. 

[Related: Facebook Narcissists, Tribal Marketing, and Beyonce]

Apparently there’s been a lot of drama on Twitter lately amongst the rich and famous. As much as I’d like to say “miss me with the drama”, or “I have better things to worry about” I did in fact spend a considerable amount of time catching up on what was going down as I took my nightly scroll through my timeline. Through that murky mess I somehow came across this tweet from Rihanna:

rihanna anti tweet free

As I said earlier, I’m in no way, shape or form part of Rihanna’s NAVY, but I couldn’t help myself after reading the word “gift”. I did feel slightly wrong as I clicked the link and entered my email address. I wondered two things: 1. Am I a bad person for swiping this gift that was meant for her fans? and 2. “what’s the catch?”. And then I saw it. Down at the bottom screen read the words: “Sign up for your 60 day Tidal Premium trial. No credit card required” (or something like it).

No. Credit. Card. Required. Meaning…more free?


I was already on a happy high from getting free music, so I went ahead and gleefully claimed my TIDAL trial even though I had vowed that I would never ever ever use Tidal. Ok, it wasn’t that extreme, but either way here we are. And let me tell you..I like TIDAL. I like how it looks, I like the exclusiveness of it, and I like it just as much as I like Spotify. And when I like things I’m willing to pay for them.

And now’s the part where I add that I understand that TIDAL is considered a failure in general BUT that’s because of the way it was initially launched and presented (for the benefit of already rich artists, rather than the consumer, and more expensive than it needed to be). But hey, now they’ve got a potential customer in me (if their prices have gone down) and I’m what you would consider a superrrr late adopter. You won’t catch me buying anything first.

So I went from scrolling on my timeline, to downloading an album I probably wouldn’t have cared much about and downloading an app I had made a point to avoid. Moral of the story? If your products are really that great you should be willing to give something away for free. Whether that’s great content on your blog, free e-books, printables, a free discovery call, stock photos or free products for bloggers to review, people are more inclined to spend money with you if they trust you, and a free sample is a great way to expedite that process.

Now it’s 12:45 AM and I’m still playing Rihanna’s new tunes on TIDAL. Actually, for the last 30 minutes it’s only been one song:

Sooo good.

What do you think? Are you willing to give things away for free? Have you heard Rihanna’s album? It’s awesome!!!!

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  • I 100% agree with almost everything you’ve said in this post, like I don’t even know where to begin LOL. While I consider myself a huge Rihanna fan I did not download TIDAL to get her album (which is just OK to me) but I saw that a lot of people did!

    Just like offering a free upgrade or something of that nature gets people to sign up for email lists. Once they see, hey, you’ve got some valuable stuff poppin, they’re more likely to buy what you’re selling.