Tips for promoting your music
Knowing how to promote yourself, as we all know, is key to your success. No-one is going to do it for you until they can see that you can also do it for yourself. There are many other ways of promoting yourself free, and paid, other than putting your track up on myspace (although this is a good start!)
The first thing to make sure is that you have at least 3 tracks you are entirely happy with, and are completely finished, and mastered, (mastering can be expensive, but it will save you allot of time when you come to playing your music to people in the industry, if you are not sure where to get your tracks mastered, feel free to get in contact, and we will be happy to point you in the right direction!) Promoting your tracks is essential to your success. It’s very simple. If you don’t promote your tracks, no-one will hear them = back to square one!
A good start, before you decide to take it a step further, is get feedback on your tracks. It’s worth remembering that although you may think your track is perfect (or not!) the people that are going to be buying and listening to your music need to like it also. This seems obvious, but if you are looking for a successful career in music you need to know your target audience. In my opinion, even the most ‘leftfield’ experimental artists that ‘make it big’ are targeting their music to a certain crowd….possibly the leftfield & experimental crowd I hear you say!? Yes! So promoting is very important, whether you’re making Classical or Pop. Its up to you whether you consciously create your music with others in mind, or you create it just for yourself, or a mixture of both, it is up to you, but awareness of the fact that at some point you are looking to sell your music, and others to listen to it has to be considered if you are looking for a music career. We will start getting into slightly more advanced promotion later, but first, lets cover the basics, and create a bit of a buzz!
So once you’ve got your finished tracks what to do now? Well, there are several routes you can go down. If you are starting out, I would consider creating a bit of a buzz in your local area first, and tackling record labels…and the world at a later stage! Good ways to do this are, give away free stuff! It sounds mad, but no-one will buy your music until they know your music, and they wont know about your music until they’ve heard it!...So…the best way to do it initially is free CD’s and free mp3 downloads. Printing CDs at home is easy, and everybody loves a free CD…have you ever turned down a Free CD? I haven’t!
Easy things to do:
- Buy some blank CD’s, as many as you can! Start putting your best tracks onto the CD’s with your computer
- Once you have your CDs, think of different ways you can get them out and about, write a list if you want…
- Give your CD’s to anyone your think will like your music, leave some in the local record shop, and ask them if they can put one in each purchase of your favourite band’s record/CD! It works!
- Give them to all your friends, and give more to your best friends to hand on for you!
- If your music is suitable for all ages, give the some CDs to a friend who is t school to hand around school, kids love music, and soon, they’ll be loving yours!
- If you are confident, give your music to people you meet, or people on the street you think will like your music, you never know who they might know!
- Make sure your track is on myspace, and people can download it, and any other websites you where you can have your own free profile.
- Send out a link via email to all your friends letting them know you have a free track for download, get all your friends to spread the word!
It’s essential for your local area to know that you make music, and that you are actively seeking a music career. Most people love music, and are more than happy to spread the word.
It’s also essential that you try and get as much feedback on your music as possible; it’s good to be strong, and believe in your music, even if some others don’t, the chances are most people love it, and some will be jealous!
After handing out as many CD’s as possible, and using the tips above (plus some of your own clever techniques no doubt…) it’s hard not to notice that more people are aware of your music and what you do. If you’ve given out over 100 CD’s or more, wherever you live, whether in a small town, or a neighbourhood in a big city. People should be talking, and people are definitely listening! Also its worth mentioning that by giving out free CD’s doesn’t certify your success, you have to keep going at it and handing out more music to people, again, it may seem mad, but people will buy your music, and come and see your gigs, if they have heard of you locally and like your music.
There are two ways it can go now, while you continue to promote your music with your CD’s, you should notice a bit of a buzz, and if you’re getting good feedback, you’re definitely doing the right thing. If the feedback your getting is not so good, find out why, and see what you can do to better your next promotional CD…Once you are happy that your CD promotion is going well, and you are getting good feedback, people may start asking you when your next gig is…that’s great! The next step is obvious….performing.
Whether you are a DJ, Band, Artist, or music producer, getting your tracks heard on stage is essential. If you have got this far, and people are waiting for your performance, then you’ve done really well! Keep Going!