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Friday
May102013

9 Things YouTube Recommends Musicians Do, That You're Probably Missing

A few weeks ago, YouTube released a creators guide for musicians who use YouTube—detailing best practices and techniques for musicians using the service. The 40 page guide holds much common knowledge but a few gems of wisdom stuck out to me. Below I rounded up a few key points they made, that you shouldn’t miss.

  1.  Put Popular Searched Items In Your Title - If you have famous guests or keywords users will search, be sure to find a way to add them to your title.
  2. Tag As Much As Possible - Tag as many terms that relevant to your video as possible. If you can find real relevance in these tags to the content in your video, there is no penalty for using as many as possible.
  3. Thumbnails Should Invite Curiosity - While you think it’s a good idea to post the picture where your singer looks cute, it’s a better idea to use a thumbnail of a picture where the viewer wants to know what is going on in your video. Seeing a 100 people throwing pies at once is much more compelling than just another pretty face.

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Wednesday
May082013

3 Ways Your Band Can Use Creativity to Make More Money

Money. Many artists struggle with it: either we’re poor at managing income or we lack creativity in getting it. It’s clear that with the shape of the music industry, most artists aren’t making a living from record sales. So how are they getting the support that they need?

You might argue that some bands make their money from performing: they command large guarantees when playing a show. Another popular idea is that most bands survive because of merch sales (few promoters provide a decent guarantee, if one at all). Others see crowdsourcing as the new golden calf.

I don’t think there is a one-size fits-all model for all artists. What artists need is something that is personal, transparent, and appropriate for their career. In 5 Non-traditional Ways to Promote Your Music, I called upon artists to use their creativity when it comes to music promotion. I think the same could be said of your sources of income as well.

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Tuesday
May072013

The Music Marketing Manifesto. Ten Principles For Success

1. Write, record and play high quality music

It seems like an obvious thing to say, but everything starts & ends with the music. If the songs are poor, the recording is bad, and the live show is dull don’t expect to make a living from music.

2. Continue to only deal in high quality

Some of the best new bands and artists are let down by terrible videos, bad photography and shocking design. Yes it is fickle, but judging a book by it’s cover is a reality. When you are choosing which artist to review, book, or even sign you are invariably drawn to the most attractive presentation. So why not increase your chances of being heard? Remember, you can have the best music in the world but if nobody listens ,you get nowhere.

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Monday
May062013

How Stuff Spreads – Gangnam Style vs. Harlem Shake

In a new study looking at ‘How Stuff Spreads’ Face has identified key components that make things go viral. Looking at the spread on Twitter of two global memes, Gangnam Style vs Harlem Shake, Face discovered eight common characteristics which it says led to them becoming viral phenomena, generating thousands of spin-off versions and billions of views.

The eight common characteristics are:

1. Bursts and Rises: There are 2 models of virality.

The Burstmodel is bottom-up:the variations are more powerful then the original seed and there’s no clear leadership or narrative. The meme relies on community relevance to spread.

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Saturday
May042013

MusicThinkTank.com Weekly Recap: How Often Should You Play? 6 Drawbacks to Playing More Shows

Wednesday
May012013

The Musician of Oz

The great and powerful, Wizard of Oz, presented himself as a supernatural, omniscient being.  However, he was revealed to be a much different individual, operating a complex facade of smoke screens and holograms, without any real power.  Musicians can put themselves in the same position as Oz did, by abusing the gap between the digital and dimensional worlds.

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Tuesday
Apr302013

How Often Should You Play? 6 Drawbacks to Playing More Shows

In some of my other articles, such as How to Book SXSW, I mention the importance of playing often. However, I need to add a disclaimer: it isn’t just about the quantity of shows plated, it’s also about the quality. While in theory, it sounds good to perform as much as possible because you can gain more exposure, the results can be quite different.

There is such a thing as playing too often, especially in the same market. Here are some of the biggest reasons why you should limit the number of shows you play:

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Monday
Apr292013

6 Key Tactics For Organic Success on Youtube From Hip-Hop Artist Rob Scott

This article was written by our intern Benjy Jean Baptiste about his own experience as an artist manager.

For independent artists, Youtube can be one of the most powerful platforms available for promotion and exposure. Of course, it is also one of the most difficult platforms to garner any significant growth and attention.

This challenge was no different for 23 year old hip-hip artist, and Brooklyn native Rob Scott.

As his manager, it was my job to figure out how to bring his dream to fruition. Without any assistance from record labels, we began to effectively use YouTube as a platform to get Rob Scott noticed.

Within the first couple of months, it was painful to notice that his long nights in the studio would only result in his songs receiving 11 views. To make matters worst, the 11 views I am speaking about came from the friends and family that was in the studio with him.

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Saturday
Apr272013

MusicThinkTank.com Weekly Recap: How the Digital Music Revolution is re-shaping Album Artwork & More

Thursday
Apr252013

Red Bull DIDN'T steal my music. More important lessons for indie artists.

This is a follow up post to my post “Red Bull stole my music! 3 important lessons for independent artists.” which you can read here - http://www.musicthinktank.com/blog/red-bull-stole-my-music-3-important-lessons-for-indie-artist.html
 
I’ll start this off by stating that it turns out Red Bull didn’t steal my music and did nothing illegal as I first thought. I’ll explain how it all happened in the following post and try and highlight more important lessons I’ve learned from all this. 
 
After I wrote the post I started to share it as I still hadn’t heard anything from Red Bull about the issue and it actually spread much faster and further than I thought it ever would. Blogs like Groove Loves Melody helped spread it and then Reverbnation picked it up, tweeting it a few times and that’s when it really started moving. 

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Wednesday
Apr242013

How the Digital Music Revolution is re-shaping Album Artwork

One of the great things about the digital music revolutions is that it opened the doors for indie musicians to cheaply and effectively distribute their music to a wide audience, without having to invest in physical CDs and records. And yet, many have felt that the digital revolution has deprived albums of their visual and tactile components and depersonalized the experience of music ownership. 

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Tuesday
Apr232013

The Rise of the Musicpreneur (Part 2/3)

Some artists wanted to hear more about the subject, so here’s part #2.

In the first part of the Rise of the Musicpreneur, I highlighted the business and online assets a modern music artist should take care of.

Today, I will touch upon the practical side of the topic. It has to do with the agenda every artist should maintain in regards to Marketing, Live Performance, Creation and Fans.

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Monday
Apr222013

Local Networking for Musicians

Networking is the best way to get ahead in “the biz.” It isn’t all about sending your music to Pitchfork and blogs to hope it gets some airplay in the corners of the internet. It’s about talking to the people who matter most in your town to help each other out and to build a core fan base you can build from in the coming months.

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Saturday
Apr202013

MusicThinkTank.com Weekly Recap: When Tragedy Is In The News: How to Respond as a Musician & More