After our recent post about getting music placed in video games, we had a bunch of requests to find out also about the same process for advertising. We spoke with James Alvich from MAS (Music and Strategy) who provides a full range of solutions for brands and advertising agencies including original composition, music supervision, licensing, talent procurement, and sponsorship packages. James has over 11 years experience in advertising, specializing in television, radio and online commercial production.
For more and more musicians, the idea of stardom seems to be further and further away. While some still see stars in their eyes, a great number have come to the realization that the goal is now a lot different, since just making a living in music can now be considered a success.
When most people who want sponsorships think about their ultimate goal, it involves money. They’re looking for someone to fund their event, to pay for their tour, to raise money for their charity, and so on. When many business think about sponsoring someone, it ultimately involves money as well: even if it is an incredible cause, at the end of the day, they want to know how sponsoring will help them get more customers. Each party treats the sponsorship as a transaction. However, I believe it is important to shift the definition from “a cash and/or in-kind fee paid to a property (typically sports entertainment, non-profit event, or organization) in return for access to the exploitable, commercial potential associated with that property” (IEG, 2000) to something more equitable: a partnership.
The Music Industry
Thinks Out Loud
- Corey Crossfield: Why Mobile Apps Matter For Music
- Frank Woodworth: How to Begin a Career in the Music Industry: Advice to the graduating class of 2012
- Ariel Hyatt: Basic Marketing Principles For Artists - Part 3 of 3: Increase the Amount of Money That You Charge
- Simon Tam: How to Choose the Best Songs for Your Album
If you’re heading into the studio to record an album, you should go in with plenty of songs to spare. Sometimes, things don’t work as well in recorded format, sometimes your tastes/ideas change. At any rate, going in with more ideas allows you to choose the very best songs for your album. Besides, it’s always better to have too many songs to choose from than not enough. But how do you decide which songs should stay and which should go?
This is what I recommend that you do: Treat it like a songwriting contest.
Welcome to the final segment of a 3 part series that was inspired by a mastermind program I participated in with Ali Brown who is my mentor in the world of online marketing.
Here’s the recap of what we’ve gone over thus far…
There are three ways to increase your income:
Part 1. Increase your number of clients (fans).
Part 2. Increase the frequency of purchase, how often your fans buy from you. (and you’d better have more than just music to sell).
Part 3. Increase the amount of money that you charge…
Increasing the amount of money you charge poses a problem if all you have to sell is music because music is now widely available for free, and people have proven that they are not willing to pay a premium for music.
However, fans will pay plenty of money for experiences, like a great concert or a chance to be a contribution to an artist, a special memento, or wonderful merchandise that really resonates with your fans.
So the big day is fast approaching. You are leaving the ivory tower of college in a few weeks and are about to enter the work force. Most likely the only thought on your mind is how to get a job.
The ideal is to have a job locked up and waiting for you before you graduate, so you can enjoy your last month at college. This is what all your friends in other majors are doing. The computer scientists are getting flown across the country and eating lobster. The engineers are meeting with on campus recruiters. The management and business students have already found a good position at the bank where they interned.
The music industry does not work this way. Very few companies hire in advance. Music companies are not structured to wait several months for an entry-level candidate to graduate college. They hire when they need a body, not because there is an influx of new talent every spring, like some other industries. While this is frustrating, it actually creates a new opportunity.
Your goal as you enter the music industry should not be to find a job, but rather to develop a career. Getting your first job will be a byproduct of this process, but jobs are temporary and a career lasts a lifetime.
Think of your career development in four levels
Mobile phones can be considered either an asset or a hindrance depending on whom you ask. At one point, mobile phones were only available in brick sizes reminiscent of the scenes in A Night At The Roxbury. Fast forward to the present day when mobile phones dominate nearly every facet of human behavior. They have disrupted how we communicate with one another, how we function in a work environment, and how we choose to spend our free time. You can’t walk by a crowd of people without seeing someone typing on their Blackberry or iPhone. With the amount of impact the mobile phone has had on daily life, it is only recently that this disruption has infiltrated music.
There are over 5.6 billion people in the world with cellphones. Statistically, if there are 7.1 billion people on this planet, that means three fourths of the entire human population have a mobile phone. With these kinds of figures and usage, there is a huge audience of people who have yet to be tapped for disruption and engagement. Through the use of mobile applications and successful leverage of mobile technologies, musicians would be able to reach an entirely new audience of people in a very personal way: mobile applications.
The Music Industry
Thinks Out Loud
- Ariel Hyatt: Basic Marketing Principles For Artists - Part 1 of 3: Increasing Your Fan Base
- Rob Dix: When ‘If Anyone Else Likes It, It’s A Bonus’ Isn’t Enough
- IndieAmbassador.com: Pictures Speak Louder Than Words - A Musician’s Guide To Pinterest
- James Aviaz: 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 Street, Saints Row, MLB 2K, and Guitar Hero.
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.
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?
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.
The Music Industry
Thinks Out Loud
- David Dufresne: Is Your Music in an Art Gallery or at Ikea?
- Ariel Hyatt: How to Write Engaging Newsletters - Ariel Hyatt’s Greeting, Guts and Getting!
- Dave Cool: The Four P’s of Playing Live Shows: Performance
- James Hill: Turn Your CD into a Kick-Ass Marketing Tool
- Simon Tam: How to Use Internet Trends to Market Your Band
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(Updated July 8, 2015)