Here’s a quick story about change that might surprise you …
Leo and Harry knew firsthand that new technology has the power it turn the status quo on its head.
They were part of an economic boom in the music industry that allowed songs to spread faster and more efficiently to more people than ever before.
The movement they were part of had the additional effect of encouraging amateur musicians to participate in music in ways they had never been able to in prior years. The wave Leo and Harry helped create affected the entire music industry.
However, within a short period of time, an even newer technology came along that disrupted everything. The stable business model these two men built and profited from began to crumble.
Entries in Marketing (112)
Here’s a quick story about change that might surprise you …
If you’re a musician or in a band that’s trying to get your music out to the world, your website is a valuable marketing tool. Your website helps your fans, bloggers, and journalists find out who you are, what you sound like, and where you’re playing. It’s important that your website contains content for all types of visitors, from fans - current and potential - to booking agents and media outlets. Below are ten essential elements that every band’s website should have.
This is a response to Ariel Hyatt’s recent post ‘The Musician’s Guide To Affordable, Effective Websites’. In this article, Ariel outlines the fact that all musicians should have a website, and goes on to detail how you can set one up on a tight budget. In this article however, I want to elaborate on some of the points she makes, and give you an alternative method to setting up a lot cost website. As I’m sure you know, there’s more then one way to skin a cat, and today I’m going to show you a method that has worked well for me.
I’ve already outlined step by step how to build a music website, but today I’m going to be looking at the reasoning behind each of these decisions, so you can yourself decide if they’re right for you. I will also be looking at the set up cost, so you will know how much something like this will set you back. Considering what it costs to get a ‘professional’ to set up a website for you, I’m sure you’ll be pleasantly surprised…
While artists may wish the capital M in this industry belonged to music, the truth is there is many other elements which have to be in place to successfully launch and nurture a career.
The record execs and publicists would have you believe that the M stands for marketing. They love to take credit for how they masterminded the strategy that broke the band.
In reality when it comes to successful acts, the dominating M is not music, or marketing, but marketability, and that ultimately lies in the hands of the artist themselves. The most successful acts in both the mainstream and the more niche genres, understand this as the key to growth and sustainability.
So many artists fall down because they put too many eggs in one basket. They woefully neglect other key ingredients, which, unless firmly in place, will lead to missed opportunities and ultimately, failed careers.
I am a KISS fan, going back to 1976 when my mom first bought me Rock N’ Roll Over. I remember taking heat in the late 70s at school for liking the band, I heard the phrase “KISS sucks” more than a few times. It also took a lot of courage to wear a KISS t-shirt to school at the time… you became a instant target. I grew up with KISS and their marketing has clearly been a influence on me and business growth. I often tell people I went to the Gene Simmons School of Marketing.
As you’ve no doubt realized by now, image is pretty important to your success as an artist. It affects your live show, it affects your online presence, it affects your marketing opportunities and strategy.
But in the countless hours you’re obviously devoting to exploring and experimenting with your image, are you thinking about what kind of image you’re going to use?
The superb Riff City published a tremendously insightful post last week entitled Docs of Perception: Visual Records and How We Hear Music. In it, author Julianne Escobedo Shephard explores the relationship between camera technology and our perception of artists.
There is no doubt about it; social media has taken the sweet and innocent fan, and has created a monster.
A transparency-seeking, interactivity-craving, empowerment-hungry monster.
Ok so maybe fans aren’t these terrible things that goes bump in the night, but the point remains the same. Today’s fans desire something more than just music and the occasional Facebook or Twitter update.
Today’s fans desire an experience!
But creating this experience can be a bit tricky. It has to cater directly to the needs and desires of YOUR fans, or else you run the driving them away.
One of my New Years resolutions was to do a bit more blogging and provide the music and marketing communities with some cool tips in navigating the web and managing your street campaigns.
I have been in the marketing field for over 10 years now and running FanManager for 6 years, so I wanted to post some of my observations and let you know what has worked and what hasn’t.
The entry below will cover everything you need to know about online street teaming in this new digital era. Although physical street teams are still important and relevant for many hard touring bands, online street teaming is becoming much more prevalent.
HERE IS WHY…
1) Ease of Reaching Fans. It has never become so easy to reach tens of thousands of people in just a few minutes. In today’s ADD culture, people want instant bite sized bits of information. People are tuning out billboards and traditional advertising and are much more willing to listen to a recommendation of a new track, video, or concert from a friend. This is why platforms like Twitter and Facebook are so important today.
One of my greatest frustrations with respect to marketing has been that while I speak often about human’s predisposition to share, we’ve yet — in the entertainment realm — developed a way to encourage/reward sharing/sharers.
A bit of background. It was when music/books/movies/etc. went from being objects (analog) to being information (digital) that people could finally satisfy their hard-wired impulse to share with no downside.
Prior to this, if I wanted to share an album/book/DVD with you, when I gave it to you I was deprived of my copy — you win, I half lose/half win. Post the shift to information, when I share my digital versions with you, I still keep my copy — we both win.
I just got home from a wonderful Thanksgiving dinner with my mother, sister, brother, niece and nephew in Franklin Park, New Jersey. The roads were slick from an early snow shower that turned to freezing rain. As I was driving home it dawned on me that I haven’t written a blog post (on any topic) in over a month. But tonight I suddenly found the inspiration to present…
A Sample Music Business Plan for Your Band
For those of you who haven’t read my previous posts on this topic, I’ll briefly bring you up to speed. I wrote a post on Music Think Tank Open that was transferred to the main page (an honor in my book) called How to Write a Music Business Plan. It was a bit fluffy like this one might end up and one of the MTT readers called me on it. The first comment was, “Would have been stronger with a template or sample.” I got pissed off and created a template. Thanks again Justin.
Simon Tam explains the approach that artists should take to get endorsements and sponsors. Artists need to create opportunities by initiating contact in a unique way. Artists need to focus on how they can provide value to the company instead of the other way around. To start, artists can contact companies with less competition such as local businesses that may be more likely to become a sponsor.
“It’s about creating a lasting relationship where you can build an audience together with that company.” (Read On)
Internet Radio Is the Future…Duh
Charles Hill writes about his rant on recent articles that he finds obvious.
“I run across articles with titles like “Internet Radio is the Future”. This cracks me up. Its like writing a book on the fact that the sky is blue.” (Read On)
Relationships Are The New Distribution
Greg Bates discusses one aspect of the 4 P’s of Marketing: Place. Most artists think that their distribution is taken care of by putting their music on iTunes or Bandcamp, but distribution is made up of the quality of your relationships. Artists need to build relationships with fans and reach out to other bands, businesses, etc. to collaborate on projects.
If there’s one thing I learned from my former years playing in houses of worship, it’s that the Sunday morning experience is designed for maximum effectiveness. Granted, some churches are more finely tuned than others, but the principles of your average worship service should apply to every single concert you play.
- Start with an engaged crowd. Even if it’s just the first row or two, a well-timed “Hallelujah!” now and again will get the cold crowd to warm up a little.
- Appeal to all five senses. Studies have shown that we remember events better if all of our senses are engaged. The Church, in its various forms throughout the millennia, has evolved to adopt this level of impact.
- Sight: Robes, banners, crosses, flowers, statues, you name it. Stained-glass windows and flying buttresses were designed specifically to catch your eye.
- Sound: Obviously, a church service involves talking and music. If your shows don’t have either, you’re reading the wrong article.
As with most folks who work in the tech business, I think it’s important to celebrate failures — they often teach us more than success. As such, I wanted to share a few Facebook Ads campaigns I experimented with and why they didn’t work.
The question I wanted to answer after the almost-too-easy success with the All Smiles campaign was “How easy is it to convert fans of related (but not directly tied) artists from Facebook Ads?”
Answer: Not easy.
I set out to target three groups of fans with free downloads from A B & The Sea: Jukebox The Ghost (with whom they were touring), Katy Perry (whose song they covered), and Beach Boys (to whom they sound most similar). I set up Facebook ads driving to dedicated landing pages (eg - http://abandthesea.net/jukebox/) with unique Topspin widgets on each so I could track conversion data at a granular level. Here’s how each campaign broke down:
She is from Sugar Land, TX. She is twenty-two and is very interested in music marketing and branding, new trends in the music and record industries, and distribution. She wants to learn more about the changes affecting the music industry and how artists are changing the way they interact with fans. Her career goals include working in a marketing position at a music company or label and working as a session musician for major artists. Currently, she is seeking a job/internship at music labels and companies in the Texas area or to continue her education, possibly pursuing a master’s degree in music or marketing.
Here at Music Think Tank, she’ll be focusing on tagging posts, writing post summaries, approving comments, and getting involved in a myriad of other ways with Hypebot too.
Take a moment to welcome her to the community.
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(Updated January 13, 2016)