This question was posed by several loyal TXBA customers, and I'm sure more people will ask the same. Here's why I think TXBA Locals may (or may not) appeal to the existing TXBA customer.
Buying -vs- Subscribing
Let's make sure we're on the same page about what it means to buy a course -vs- being a TXBA Local.
When you buy a course from TXBA, you own your own copy of the materials forever. Nobody can take it from you, even if TXBA disappears someday. You paid exactly once for each course, and you'll never spend another dime for them.
When you subscribe to TXBA Locals, you are paying to view all the courses without owning any of them. If you stop paying, the courses go away. If TXBA disappears, you'll have nothing. You'll pay each month for access to every course.
If you are a TXBA Local for more than several years, you will have spent more money than you would have spent buying the courses directly, and you will not own them because you paid to access them online.
That's not a secret, that's just a fact.
General Benefits of TXBA Locals
Here are the most obvious benefits of the Locals program to most people. This is what the subscription fee pays for:
- Access to all existing courses
- Access to any new courses released
- A better learning experience online with the Pro Player
- Let's break down what those benefits mean for someone who already owns a bunch of courses.
Access to all existing courses
If you own almost everything, this won't matter much because you already have almost everything.
If you own only a few courses, the value of this "all access" feature should be weighed against how much you really care about the courses you don't yet own, and what it would cost to buy them.
The value of this feature also depends on how comfortable you are paying to watch something -vs- paying to own something forever.
Access To New Courses
This benefit is most valuable to people who never want to miss a single course. In the past I've averaged between $100-$150 in new course material per year, and this number will go up now that most major TXBA infrastructure projects are done.
If you are content to pick and choose which new courses you want to buy, access to every new TXBA course might not matter to you.
A Better Learning Experience
This is the big one, so pay attention.
Learning is not just videos, mp3s, or tabs. How well you learn depends on how smooth your experience is while you use those materials. Here are three factors that affect your overall learning experience.
- Content - the course materials (videos, mp3s, tablature files).
- Software - the tools you use to interact with the materials (software to play videos, mp3s and view tablature).
- Integration - how smart the Software is with regard to the Content.
For customers, I can only improve #1. For Locals, I can improve all three.
For my customers, the software you use to play the videos is out of my control. Likewise, whatever software you use to view the tablature is out of my control. I can't improve #2.
This matters because desktop software for playing audio, video, or tablature is "dumb" with regard to my specific courses. It doesn't know what the video is about, just that it's a video. It doesn't know what the tablature is for, just that it's a tablature file. I can't make the software "smarter", #3.
So for customers, I control #1, but #2 and #3 are out of my control. But if you're a TXBA Local, I can control and improve #1, #2 and #3.
How? Because Locals watch everything online, right on the TXBA site using a tool that I wrote called the Pro Player. I wrote it, I control it, and I can improve it as fast as I want.
Let's say that a few months down the road, I figure out that when you click "Loop", it actually makes more sense to rewind a few milli-seconds before the beginning of the loop, but only for the first time through. (I have no idea if that would actually be useful, but let's say for the sake of argument that it would be life changing-ly great).
I could make the Pro Player do that in a few hours. The TXBA Locals would instantly be able to use that improved looping functionality and every one of them would instantly have a better experience learning.
I just improved #2 by improving the looping algorithm. If you're a customer, these changes mean nothing because you're using some other software to play your materials that I can't control or improve.
Now let's take it a step further.
Let's say that over time I figure out that the feature I described above is only really useful for advanced level solos, (definitely not a real idea, but stay with me).
Again, because I control the Pro Player, I can make it do whatever I want. I could re-program it in a matter of hours to use that new looping algorithm ONLY on advanced level solos, but use the regular looping for everything else.
By doing this, I improved #3, I made the software "smarter". It's now aware that a certain looping algorithm is better for a certain type of soloing video.
I simply cannot provide this level of experience for customers using software on their computers that I don't control.
I am happy to sell courses (Content) directly to customers, and will never remove this as an option. If you're a highly motivated learner, that might be good enough for you.
But as someone who is obsessed with making things efficient, and who loves seeing people learning as efficiently as possible, I am not satisfied to only provide materials.
It matters to me HOW you use my materials. It bothers me that I have so little ability to improve the learning experience for customers. That is why I created the TXBA Locals program.
My goal is to make the experience of learning as a TXBA Local so insanely useful that it will become your first choice.