Marketing and music might not have sounded such a great combo a decade or so ago. Associated with the likes of Simon Cowell and generic boy bands, marketing would have been used to promote good looking boy bands with zero charisma or talent. These days, however, things have changed.
Our new music marketing Infographic shows you 10 ways in which you can promote your band both online and offline. Although there are many different ways you can market your band, we’ve put together a few tips to help you get started.
Do they exist ?? Because we offer an integrated release system encompassing radio, online , print etc., Quite Great gets approached by around three bands a day looking to release music in the UK. It is really important when deciding on how to release your music that a band or an artist does understand that the recording of the music – whether using a friend to produce or a world renowned producer – will still mean someone has to promote your music. So what do you do? Why not Google ‘cheap music promotion’ or the ‘cheap music pr’ option? Generally that means paying £250 to £400 for someone to use their well structured mail chimp or similar mailing list, then filling in the dots similar to taking a survey, but does this get you anywhere?
Often we are told that companies offer a three month period for this but most of the time what looks like something that is too good to be true is too good to be true! At Quite Great we edit many blogs and websites, helping to create the news and giving us a platform to build a real structure for future releases. We are sent many releases aiming primarily it seems to make sure a video link is clicked, so if nothing else more views may be registered on a band’s YouTube. But this is not a way to build profile. This is a way to show a band or an artist that something has been done whilst making them feel they are being promoted.
In order to run an efficient PR company you need to staff it a coordinated release and not continually outsource, so being thrifty and thinking that promotion for under £400 is what you need may not always be the best way forward. Always compare services like for like. Make sure if you are trying to find a company that offers all the services you need to release your music, then you are actually getting this. But be prepared to spend more money and make the most of the bigger team and acting as your own label boss. That is why we created the DIY label service via www.quitegreatmusicmarketinguk.com to give artists independence and control they deserve.
So once you have found a company and understand if your band is going to be given a rounded promotional campaign featuring online, press and radio you need to make sure you have a good relationship with the team who you are working with. We have at least ten Skype meetings a week, along with providing weekly updates so everyone knows what is going on. We discuss the positives and the negatives and work around them to build the foundations for a career which ultimately is what your band or you as an artist really needs.
PR Campaigns for Unsigned musicians
The Quite Great Music Marketing team have promoted a variety of music videos over the years and you can easily see the impact it can have. At the top end the work Quite Great did on the track Rockstar for Nickelback shows how important creative video content can be to enhance interest in a video and in turn help UK radio promotions and TV plugging departments. There was an array of PR creative elements that made it to the national newspaper gossip columns and this must have assisted the work carried out by national TV and radio promotions teams to gain more exposure.
However when you are a small band finding your way you often have to try and create a low cost or free music video even if you have to grab a friend or favour from someone with a video camera and a bit of equipment. There are video companies offering services as little as £1000 or £500 which is cheap so you have to make sure you have some creative thinking to make the budget worthwhile. The aim is simple, to get some viral exposure, its not about making it to any of the terrestrial channels.
Quite simply you will rely on one of 3 things to get your music video promoted. None of these are from guarantees and promises from web companies and cheap digital agencies claiming to give you thousands of ‘real’ YouTube hits as this is often just not realistic without real exposure.
First it goes without saying that it has to be a great song with a gutsy performance, the type that people will remember, one that will get passed around and shared across social networks.
Two with a combination of the first point, a bit of creative or quirky thinking that has something that is fitting with the song, there has been some awesome examples from the likes of work we carried out for Mooli and that fantastic track, Automatic. You combine a buzzing performance with an ear tingling track, catchy storyline resulting in a bucket load of views from a variety of sites individually targeted to spread the word.
Finally we have the third point, good old controversy! If you want a quick hit or at least people shouting about you then go down the controversy route but this contains the most risk as you can easily lose control of the viral exposure and the type of conversation it generates across the web. Negative PR is the risk here and as the old saying goes ‘any PR is good PR’ is not always true as this can come back to bite you so if you are going to take controversy risk then make sure you have a disaster recovery plan in place (or at least plan how you may turn the negatives into positives).
What ever you decide to do a music video offers a great opportunity for your band so use it wisely.
Despite the fact you can get a lot of free music advice on the web, you should always try and check if a music blogger is someone who has real applicable experience to give music advice to upcoming bands and musicians. Music promotion and music advice is best received by either those who have lived and breathed it or someone who has made a difference in the industry, a music maverick of some kind. Normally a band/signer looking for advice must be careful that these well-meant words are not well meaning at all but part of a cheaper SEO campaign to drive traffic to a website! The difference between the two can be hard to spot if someone is ‘talking the talk’ so to speak, but a person who is in the music industry will always tell you struggles and ups and downs of getting to the top. Remember, if it sounds too good to be true, then it probably is!
So rule one is, who is the person offering the advice and rule 2 is why are they offering this advice? A lot of companies are under a disguise of a professional, but don’t actually know what they are talking about in the music industry. The reason Quite Great and Decade PR offer advice is twofold, one so if you are a band you may be able understand more about PR experts work and end up working with quite great, or two, if you are a potential new staff members and you are trying to find a career in the music industry, then quite great would be an ideal company to help you with a music apprentice scheme.
Either way, if you are looking for your big break or looking to start a career in this industry, be careful who you take advice from and what they may be after. The best way is to always get advice from bands and companies who are well known and trusted in the industry.