Lots of people know they want to “try” learning to play an instrument, but they don’t know which they’d like to play, if they’ll even like it, or how long they’d like to commit to lessons. And they don’t necessary live in a place conducive to practice (easily annoyed neighbors), can’t fit a piano/cello in their apartment, etc.
What if learning to play an instrument was more like having a gym membership? You have access to any instrument and class you want?
Observations & Data
The current standard in Dallas for instrument rental is to pay monthly (or on a rent-to own basis). With a 3 or 12 month contracts. And pricing ranging from $20-65 depending on the size of the instrument (with instrument maintenance included in the price).
Schools are a common target, with “School kits” packages that include extra equipment such as music stands, etc. (which are delivered along wit the instrument, directly to the school).
1. Specify context of use
Context of use would be (potentially) threefold: on-site, online, and rental/take home. The service would be primarily a resource a “library” of classes, experts, and equipment that could be sought out.
2. Specify requirements
I. Variety of choice of equipment
II. Access to several locations to practice, learn, or be instructed (both physical & virtual).
III. Short-term time commitments (for subscription, choice of instrument, class sign up, etc.).
IV. Minimal financial commitments- consumers get to “try” their instrument before they buy it.
3. Create design solutions
The solution is a users who can create their own custom packages depending on their financial standing, interest level, ability to commit, and preferred learning environments.
4. Evaluate Designs
I hypothesize that a user would respond positively to a custom package, so long as they knew what their options were. The one thing that could prove precarious would be overwhelming them with too many options or nuances, therefore a question to help them determine what would be a good fit (such as what Chase does when you apply for a credit card); as well as levels of packages (that can we tweaked) would be an ideal solution.
THE 4 P’S
Monthly subscription-based access to a one-stop-shop “studio” (library of instruments if you will) location with various: instruments, equipment, and supplies that could be used on site, or rented out.
The place in the market would primarily be novice musicians, who want to “try before they buy,” would like variety and flexibility, and who aren’t ready to make heady investments int their equipment. Particularly for students (high school-college)
Service could include levels. Entry level would include access to instruments (both on-location) and on some kind of temporary loan-out agreement, and free in-person classes. While a secondary level might include online modules, literature, access to private “practice” rooms, etc.
Target music classes directly (both in high schools and in the collegiate setting), as well as music supply stores, music clubs, etc. and short-term Groupon-esque incentives.