Saturday, October 17, 2009

You Can't Afford to be Bitter!

~ I found this article on The Music Industry Report (link below). I think you will find it very interesting. Do you treat your band as a business? How many of these listed items are you already doing? Hit me up, let me know what you think!

What do artists and songwriters have to do today to increase their prospects of making a living — if not a killing?

Today, artists and their managers have to do it all. They have to be their own promotion and marketing team. They have to network, build relationships and nurture their fans.

Most of all, they must come to terms with the fact that no one is going to invest their time and money into the artists’ music and careers unless they can see a path to getting a return on that investment. That path is still taking shape in the new music landscape; often referred to as Music 2.0. It’s still called show business and not show friends so investors have to have a stomach for risk. Artists can’t afford to be bitter about having to do it all themselves and I speak to many who unfortunately are. Artists and their managers have the most to gain in today’s business models and they get to keep a lot more of their rights and income than ever before. So, if they are diligent and their music is good they can earn a very decent living.

Nothing can replace good music, charisma, playing lots of gigs, having a good street team of fans who help artists spread the word and nurturing a growing fan base. However, there are so many tools now directly available to artists to help them do even these things that didn’t exist just a few years ago that leveraging them is a must if artists are going to succeed in the new landscape.

I’ll leave it here for now, but for good measure I’m throwing in a list of things artists should be doing and if you know any you can pass this list along:

First, they must get attention. Money will follow.

1. Artists should sign up to as many online social networks as possible where they can post theirs or their band’s profile and music. They need to network with fans and similar bands on those sites. They include but are not limited to:

a. MySpace
b. Facebook
c. iMeem
d. Broadjam
e. Mog
f. Reverb Nation

2. They need to get valuable feedback and analytic information on their music from focus groups and real industry professionals

a. SoundOut
b. Music Xray (my company)
c. They should use Google Analytics to measure activity on their website

3. They should submit their songs to real industry opportunities, song contests and gigs

a. SonicBids
b. Music Xray (still my company)
c. Great American Song Contest
d. International Songwriting Competition
e. John Lennon Songwriting Contest

4. They should distribute their music to all digital retail outlets

a. TuneCore
b. The Orchard
c. IODA Alliance
d. Reverb Nation

5. They should consider “pre-clearing” their music for sync licensing (like Getty Images but for songs)

a. Pump Audio (actually owned by Getty Images)
b. AudioSocket
c. Sir Groovy

6. They should consider placing their songs on sites that enable their fans to “pitch in” to fund their recording and marketing.

a. Sellaband
b. SliceThePie

7. Especially they should stay up to date on the new music space. There are some very good blogs and newsletters they should be reading.

a. Music Think Tank
b. Hypebot
c. Mog
d. Lefsetz Letter
e. MI2N


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