INgrooves Fontana has signed a deal with PledgeMusic that will provide the indie distributor's labels with a direct-to-consumer solution while also helping to transform the crowd-funding site into a new kind of retailer.

INgrooves Fontana labels will now be able to access the PledgeMusic platform from the distributor's portal, which will allow them a turnkey, direct-to-consumer solution to set up an album well in front of its release date by offering the artist's fans the opportunity to purchase unique merchandise and experience, according to the announcement.

INgrooves to Purchase Fontana

INgrooves Fontana says that this partnership will redefine the traditional record label plan and marketing strategy. Fontana senior VP of artist and label services Bryan Mead says it will extend the marketing setup period for a new release by allowing labels to work releases as much as a year before street date, or even in instances when the street date hasn't been determined.

"The process can began as early as the label and artist are ready," Mead says. "Street date is no longer the starting line."

Fans can get higher-priced deluxe versions of the album with bonus material, limited edition items and autographs, music and merchandise bundles, fan firsts, tickets, experiences, and fan contests and sweepstakes. Moreover, if artists so chose, they can let their fans be a part of the record creating process, beyond pledging money to help fund recording the album.

"If we do this right, we can build a whole new way to bring an album to market," Mead says.

While many of the features are currently present on the site, the main use of the site is to help artists raise money to create albums. But the INgrooves Fontana partnership with PledgeMusic attempt to move the site beyond its origins and make it a full retail partner, even for artist who have labels funding for the creation of the albums.

PledgeMusic's hopes that other labels and distributors also sign on, which would transform the site into a must-stop destination for consumers to shop when thinking of their favorite bands, Mead says.