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Saturday
Apr282012

MusicThinkTank.com Weekly Recap: Basic Marketing Principles For Artists & More

Thursday
Apr262012

Q&A: Getting Music Placed in Video Games

This post was written by James Aviaz and originally appeared on the Songtrust blog.

After getting our first listen to the upcoming Halo 4 soundtrack – as written by former Massive Attack producer Neil Davidge – it seemed the perfect time to give some insight into video game music and placements.

We spoke with Josh Kessler, VP of Business Development for Downtown Music’s licensing agency dms.FM. Josh has been involved with the placement of huge artists into games like FIFA StreetSaints RowMLB 2K, and Guitar Hero.

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Wednesday
Apr252012

Pictures Speak Louder Than Words - A Musician’s Guide To Pinterest

Remember the good old days when you would gather your favorite pictures, articles and photos and stick them in a scrapbook? Or pin postcards and notes on your kitchen pin board? Well, the art of the keepsake has just gone digital. Pinterest is a digital scrapbook of your life. A way to tell the world who and what you are with visual snapshots. A way to follow and connect with a community of like-minded people without talking. Digital stalking has just gone artsy, and apparently 10.4 million users have jumped on the bandwagon. 140 characters is just too much. Pictures speak louder than words.

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Tuesday
Apr242012

When ‘If Anyone Else Likes It, It’s A Bonus’ Isn’t Enough

What would be the worst-case scenario for you as a musician? You might think it’d be having precisely zero fans, or having people actively hate your music. But unless the hatred reaches Rebecca Black levels, at least it’s feedback you can use to improve what you do. In truth, the most damaging situation is having a small, gradually growing fanbase, getting decent feedback, but not seeing how it’ll ever take off enough to generate a decent income any time soon. Is this you? And what can you do about it?

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Monday
Apr232012

Basic Marketing Principles For Artists - Part 1 of 3: Increasing Your Fan Base

As many of you know Cyber PR® is a hybrid of Internet Marketing, Social Media and PR. I am an avid Internet Marketing student and I gather the nuggets I learn from my studies for musicians.

For many years, I’ve attended internet marketing retreats and seminars; a favorite of mine was a two-day intensive course run by the incredible marketer, Ali Brown.

The course was a whirlwind, and the core principles I learned were both basic and critically important.

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Saturday
Apr212012

MusicThinkTank Weekly Recap: Is Your Music in an Art Gallery or at Ikea? & More

Friday
Apr202012

How to Use Internet Trends to Market Your Band

If you use the internet frequently, chances are that you’ve been noticing a few things on the rise: meme images or animated .gif’s, certain types of videos, infographics, etc.

Why not use these viral trends and put your own spin on it to create fun, engaging, easy-to-share content with your fans?

  • Memes: Meme images have exploded online, especially in geek culture. These images have spread to billions, each with their own take of the images, from “Y U NO” guy to the ever so lovable Nyan cat. You can create your own memes for free using generator sites like weknowmemes.com and memegenerator.net. You can make it more personal fans by talking about specific points in your band’s history, favorite songs or themes, and also inviting them to create some of their own. Most meme websites also provide multiple examples of each image in case you don’t understand the logic behind that type of meme. Read a few, then create your own. Here are some that I made for my band, The Slants, that generated some great buzz from our fans:

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Thursday
Apr192012

Turn Your CD into a Kick-Ass Marketing Tool

Many new bands today do not pay that much attention to how their album looks. They’re content with just having a nicely burned disc and a decent artwork- the cheaper, the better. Well, we cannot blame them. There are millions of bands sprouting everyday and everyone is doing all the hustle on the internet- viral videos, music downloads, compelling websites, you name it. Their competitors are using these tech for free! Why should they spend hundreds of dollars more for their CD artwork? Isn’t it enough that they have a CD?
What most bands do not know is that the CD packaging can be a good marketing tool. If you believe in the marketing power of the CD and you want to exhaust its marketing potential, here are the things you should include in your packaging to enhance its marketing power:

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Wednesday
Apr182012

The Four P’s of Playing Live Shows: Performance

Dave Cool is the Director of Artist Relations for musician website and marketing platform Bandzoogle. Twitter: @Bandzoogle | @dave_cool

The “Four P’s” is a term used to describe the traditional Marketing Mix: Product, Price, Placement, and Promotion. I’m borrowing from that expression to talk about the Four P’s of Playing Live Shows: Preparation, Promotion, Performance, and Post-Show. This series of blog posts will cover the things that you can be doing as a live performer to maximize each show. In Part 3, it’s all about your performance:

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Tuesday
Apr172012

How to Write Engaging Newsletters - Ariel Hyatt's Greeting, Guts and Getting!

Are you still not sending out newsletters to your fans? Studies prove you should be… Boston based research firm Chadwick Martin Bailey has completed a study that all musicians should know about. Here are the important highlights:

Three-quarters of web users are likely to share content with friends and family, and nearly half do so at least once a week. But while much social networking content is built around such shared items, most people still prefer to use email to pass along items of interest.

The study goes on to say:

Overall, 86% of survey respondents said they used email to share content, while just 49% said they used Facebook. Broken down by age, the preference for email is more pronounced, as users get older. And only the youngest group polled, those ages 18 to 24, reverses the trend, with 76% sharing via Facebook, compared with 70% via email.

So, if your audience is older than 24 you better be thinking about your newsletter strategy now! In conclusion the study says:

“Rather than focusing on sharing content they thought the recipients would find helpful or relevant (58%), most respondents cared more about what they thought was interesting or amusing (72%).

Here’s the entire study if you want to read it (with lots of pretty graphs too): http://bit.ly/b4dfcI

So, ask yourself: Are you including content in your newsletters that is interesting and amusing?

 

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Monday
Apr162012

Is Your Music in an Art Gallery or at Ikea?

Imagine a painting that you really like. Imagine that you see that painting for the first time at an opening in an art gallery (think a fancy, somewhat pretentious art gallery…). You like the image, the colors, the technique, etc. You’re impressed. You love that painting.

It would look awesome in your living room, wouldn’t it? You have a chat with the artist, where she explains the concept and the process behind creating the painting, the materials used, and what it means to her. She tells a bit of her life story, and how and why she became a painter. You have a glass of wine; you discuss the painting with a few more people. They also like it.

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Saturday
Apr142012

MusicThinkTank.com Weekly Recap: Other Ways to Think About the Copyright Debate and more

Thursday
Apr122012

The Importance of Album Art in the Digital Age

As we all increasingly download our music rather than browsing through the shelves of our local record shop, album artwork is less important. Or is it?

There is evidence to suggest that musicians and audiences are still interested in imagery surrounding music.

“I like a bit of controversy. It tests the nation’s intelligence.”

When photographer and director David Boni came up with the idea of hanging The Stranglers in a kids’ swing park, bass player JJ Burnel, replied “I like a bit of controversy. It tests the nation’s intelligence.” And so, the cover of brand new album ‘Giants’ was born. Currently touring the album – and, inevitably, some of their classic tracks like ‘No More Heroes’, ‘Golden Brown’ and ‘Peaches’ – the band has seen a revival in fortunes across Europe, only tainted by drummer Jet Black’s recent illness.

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Wednesday
Apr112012

Other Ways to Think About the Copyright Debate

I recently started a discussion on TED.com discussing Rob Reid’s presentation, The$8 billion iPod, and a response that was posted by Ken Sanney. While my original intent was discuss the simplification of complex issues, people began some passionate arguments about piracy and copyrights. You can read the whole thing (with comments) here from TED’s conversation page.

I started getting frustrated because the majority of the people posting were not involved in the music industry nor did they have any knowledge of copyright law. If there’s one thing that I can’t stand, it’s simply the regurgitation of rhetoric, especially when there’s no basis in logic and not supported by evidence. 

Here’s my personal take on the issue. If you’d like to see my responses to all of the traditional arguments in favor of unauthorized piracy and the debate whether copyright protection should exist at all, please check out the TED debate linked above.

 

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