Remember, the ultimate goal is to be able to make a living by doing what you love. In order for that to happen you need to make sales. You have to earn an income. You have to be able to get people to buy into your product – whether it be through selling your music, booking shows, selling merchandise etc. And here’s the best part – you don’t need a label in order to do this! As a matter of fact, if you are already making money off of your music, shows, and merchandise, it will be much easier for you to get that record deal that you are longing for (and you will have much more of a say as to how that deal pans out).
There are a few basic concepts that drive a sale regardless of what you’re selling.
Below are some main things to remember when making music and coming up with your marketing plan and technique.
In order for someone to buy into a product/brand there are a few things that have to take place:
- They must know the product exists.
- The product must spark their interest.
- Both the product and the presentation of the product must be quality.
- The product must be easily accessible.
- They must have a clear understanding as to WHY they should buy the product.
Now how can you relate all of the above to your music?
Of course, in order for someone to purchase something they must be aware of it. The main way to accomplish this is by marketing and promotion. Your product, which in this case is your music, must be marketed properly in order to get it the exposure that it needs. How can anyone hear and buy your music if they don’t even know it exists?
A good way to spark interest is by putting out a quality product – and by this I mean that both the actual product AND the presentation of your product must be professional. If your music is presented in the right way you shouldn’t have a problem getting a good response from your marketing efforts. This is also the reason why it is so important to figure out your target market – it is much easier to spark someone’s interest if you can relate to them. If you already know a bit about the people that you’re offering your product to, it will be easier to make a sale. For instance, you’re not going to promote a rap record on a country music site (that wouldn’t spark the viewers interest), instead you would promote it on a site like www.hiphopsince1987.com that targets the hip hop market.
You’re product (music) also needs to be easily accessible. You should have one website (www.yourartistname.com) that ties in all of your other websites (youtube, facebook, twitter, reverbnation etc) that your fans can go to to download your music, see where your next performance will be etc. You can also make it even easier by uploading your music to iTunes, Amazon, etc (I explained a little on how to do this in another recent blog here). You need to make it easy for someone to search for you. People shouldn’t have to take 10 minutes to find you. If you want a flat screen TV from best buy, when you search ‘best buy flat screen’ it will come up immediately. Your music/brand needs to be the same way.
Last but not least, the person needs to have a valid and clear understanding of why they should buy into your product. You need to learn how to seal the deal by taking away any doubts. Before you release anything, you should have already thought to yourself ‘why should someone buy this?’ Understand that this question doesn’t always have to be answered verbally. Part of the answers should be confirmed by both your actions and the product itself – Your great marketing skills, the dope sound of your music, the overall quality of your presentation will all speak for themselves.
In conclusion, it all starts with a quality product, then you seal the deal by presenting yourself properly (making a great first impression) and by building a strong brand. If your fans can see the product, if it is marketed to those that can relate to it, if your presentation is professional and can stand out among the others, you are on your way to making some great sales (if you aren’t already)!
Turn your dreams into dollars.