How To Market Your Music Using Innovative Promotion Strategies & A Personal Touch.
How do you properly market your music without hiring a promoter?
Why pay anyone else if you can do a better job on your own? First of all, what many indie music promoters do in the end can tend to be nothing more than an impersonal email campaign. Without the focus, effort and personalized approach required to make a real contact, they can do more damage than good, sometimes losing valuable press and getting your band’s reputation hurt in the process.
That’s not to say that you should be congratulating yourself. Many independent musicians do a terrible job of promoting themselves by mass mailing countless people on websites such as Myspace & Facebook, begging “Check us out!” or “Free album giveaway!” Unfortunately, this is not going to help you move forward in any professional sense.
To market your music properly, first you need to have your professional package together.
This is a topic that is explored in many other blogs but it includes a well written
biography, band pics, a properly designed home page, a CD or professionally recorded tracks, and art to represent you.If any of these important elements are not up to snuff – hold off until they are. Other critical things you will require are a blog, a newsletter,
ways for people to virally spread your music, incoming links, SEO (Search engine optimization) and lots of press.
So what will you be doing in order to market your music yourself and ditch the promoter? Get lots of press.
How do you do this? It’s much simpler than you would guess. You’ll have to study your musical style and sub-genres as well as all the publications, sites, podcasts, radio and blogs who support them. You can find useful blogs with extensive music media databases as well as check out the Indie Bible to find the places you want to reach out to. This will definitely take some time, but it’s what will seperate you from the rest. Keep a list as you go and save it for future use.
Some of these sites will allow you to submit your links and news releases. You should take the time to do this. Make sure you are writing original news releases instead of press releases. There is a difference between the two. News releases are straight to the point and “news-based”. You will have much more luck with these.
Another good tactic; Music blogs have become very popular lately. You can look for blogs that support your genre on major sites such as The Hype Machine. These blogs do not always post review, which can work in your favor. They normally post mp3′s and sometimes full albums. You’ll still need to take your time and follow the basic rules in the next paragraph.
Most industry websites and publications will have submission rules to follow when asking for coverage.
DO NOT always follow them.
You simply won’t gain the amount of coverage you want if you always play by their rules. Some of these places get hundreds of
emails daily asking for features. You need to be personable, yet crafty.
It’s a very good idea to individually contact any reviewer or blogger who supports your style. Contact them letting them know what you enjoyed about their writing. Doesn’t it make your day when someone writes you about how great your band is? Well, bloggers and reviewers take pride in their work just the same as any musician. Most musicians don’t take the time to build a relationship with them. Compliment them and give them feedback on their writing. Then start a conversation, potentially about their favorite bands, or one you have in common with them.
In the next paragraph, talk about your band and ask for a review or feature. Be humble and appreciative. This will help more good things come your way.
You’ll discover that these tactics will gain you much more media coverage than almost any promoter.
Promoters can be very useful, but only the individuals who are connected to the business and have the top media a phone call away.
That’s how you market your music better than a promoter.
About the Author
James Moore is a Canadian music consultant and author of the independent musician’s resource guide “Your Band Is A Virus! Behind-the-Scenes & Viral Marketing for the Independent Musician”. His home page is http://www.yourbandisavirus.com and his blog is http://yourbandisavirus.wordpress.com/.