If you’re running an Indie record label or production company and you don’t have a marketing plan or budget, then you’re playing yourself. Even Funeral Homes Advertise. (Think About That For A Moment.) So what makes you think that artists and producers shouldn’t have a marketing plan and budget .
Every successful company invests in Marketing and Promotion. FACT! The purpose of having a Marketing strategy is to enhance “the price of your commodity ” in the marketplace.
Your mission is to capitalize on the growing music market across the world through the production and promotion of high quality entertainment.
In order to be effective in selling your product or service you have to know the difference between marketing and promotion. Marketing is your over all strategy. Promotion involves the implementation of selling points to be executed to fulfill your strategy.
Marketing is about engaging and connecting with your target base. Marketing involves building trust. Promotion is about Getting them to Act. An effective Marketing strategy incorporates a promotional agenda that taps into the various targeted revenue streams to generate a potential R.O.I
Promotional implementation is a business marketing strategy designed to stimulate a customer to take action towards a buying decision.
A Marketing Plan involves the following Promotional tactics: Budget, Sales projections, Demographics, Geographics , Psychographics , Branding, Advertising Mediums ( TV, radio, Internet, print), Public Relations, Products, Timeline of execution of the campaign , USP(Unique Selling Proposition), SWAT Analysis, Economic trends, roles of management, mission and goals.
Look to capture a certain percentage of the market place. Know your lane and target market and analyze your competition and make a better product. No matter how good your music is, you must create and steadily increase consumer demand for it in order to continue to prosper.
Who is your target market? In order to market your music, it is imperative that you tailor your marketing and sales efforts to specifically reach the segment of the population that will most likely buy your music. It is critical that you first determine or clearly identify your primary market. Your energies and funds then can be spent more efficiently.
Sometimes you can be more successful by catering to a niche market instead of trying to sell your brand to the masses. You must have a firm grasp on what your music is about. And you must be able to define it clearly. Being a generic Rock, Pop or Hip-Hop act won’t cut it. Dig deeper and discover your unique identity. You have to determine what is your USP (Unique Selling Proposition). What is it about you or your music that separates you from the competition?
Most unsigned artists just want to perform and nothing else. They give little thought to any other marketing strategy or career enhancement. Many Producers don’t get placements because they don’t market themselves well, they don’t network and they don’t take meetings. They do a few beat battles, pass out a few beat CD’s and call it a day.
Some artists spend hundreds of dollars on studio time to create an album, but will not allocate a dime to a marketing budget to promote it. Performing in showcases only and sending out a bulletin on Twitter or Facebook twice a week about your album or mixtape is not an effective marketing plan. An effective Marketing strategy incorporates a promotional agenda that taps into the various targeted revenue streams to generate a potential Return On Investment.
An Effective Music Marketing Plan includes: Press/Publicity, Radio Promo, Video Promo, E-Blast Implementation, Shows/Tours, Online Promo, Press Releases & Street Team/Club Promo
Activate grassroots marketing initiatives that spur word of mouth buzz. Target schools, studios, clubs, barbershops etc. Develop relationships with music/lifestyle retailers and outlets. Increase your fan base on college campuses and the surrounding community.
Attract fans by executing strategic campaigns with sales driven initiatives that enhance the overall goal of increased visibility and ROI. An Intense, calculated and relentless promotional campaign will enable your label to earn revenues and capture a larger percentage of the market
Moreover, Merchandising is an essential element to any successful marketing plan. The biggest mistake an artist could make after playing a great show is to have nothing of any interest for sale immediately afterwards.
In order to create hype around your release develop a contest. Do give aways. Interact with your fans and make them part of the experience. “Gimmicks” can work for a short term. But don’t revolve your entire marketing approach around a gimmick..
It’s imperative for indie artists to compile a comprehensive email database of fans, supporters and affiliates for E-blast marketing purposes. Indie Artists should send out a bi-weekly Newsletter informing their fans of new releases, upcoming shows, merchandise for sale and give aways.
And remember this important marketing tip: People don’t buy products; they buy the feeling, the benefits and the solutions they believe the products provide. Take Note! Hence, artists you must understand that your Fans don’t just buy your music, they buy your Lifestyle, your Brand and your Movement as well.
So, Don’t Freestyle Your Marketing Efforts! Have a specific strategy and plan of attack. “Marketing With A Mission” Is The Key to A Successful Campaign.
In terms of Branding you must articulate the following: Who you are. What you Do. And What is your distinct Identity.
The “music business” has been transformed into a “Multimedia and Branding business” where the music, the songs & artists are the drivers. You’re in the business of “YOU”. You’re a brand and how you manage your brand is important. How’s your customer service? Your marketing? etc.
Nowadays it’s no longer just about selling CD’s; It’s about brand development and selling “Content” and conveying the mission of your movement. Get the price of your commodity up by matching your band with other top level brands in the marketplace. Enhance your visibility and presence.
As an indie artist or producer, one of the best ways to expand your brand is to partner with a Non-Profit organization for a worthy cause. Strategic Branding Plus Positioning Equals Increased Sales & Greater Market Share! An effective marketing plan gives you a competitive edge.
The value of a brand resides, for the audience, in the hope that the product or service will deliver what it promises. The term “Goodwill” reflects the “prudent value” of a label or firm beyond its assets, such as the reputation it enjoys with its clients or fans. Are you “Goodwill Hunting?”
Your brand is what your company stands for and what it’s known for. If you can’t define your brand, your customers won’t be able to either. The key to building a music brand revolves around the fact that as an artist you have to be able to convey your story and the philosophy behind your music. Let your fans take a journey into your world.
Your fans must either want to be you or believe you. You must know your target market and your music has to resonate with them.
By Jesse Atkinson, CEO of Urban Threshold Inc. and Founder of The A&R Power Summit and The Underground Music Awards