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Posts Tagged ‘fans’

Why your Kickstarter fundraising campaign failed

Thursday, January 17th, 2013

Many artists these days are using Kickstarter or similar services to raise funds for their next album, which is a great idea.
But they often fail. Why?

According to veteran music industry consultant Tim Sweeney, one simple reason: You don’t know your fans.

One strategy Tim has taught artists he mentors for the last 30 years is the following: “Whether you want more fans at your shows, greater sales or want to raise money for your new project start having social events with your fans. Instead of only inviting them to your shows, invite them to come hang out with you at a movie, a festival, another artist show or some other event based upon on a common interest. Too often artists want people to blindly support them because they wrote a good song. As we wrote in our last post, it’s not about the music.

“Give fans what they really want, a chance to talk with you and build a bond.”
Would you do that with your fans? Well, maybe that’s why you have to work so hard to promote and sell your music.

While social events offer you a chance to get to know your fans, they more importantly create an opportunity for your fans to get to know each other and develop friendships. That way when your future shows come up, they will call each other and come together so they can hang out with their new friends. This is why Facebook is so popular: it allows people to do this online.

Tim’s Artists have sold millions of CDs and downloads with this strategy with selective fans and have found it the best way to sell out shows in advance. He says, “Think of it this way, if your favorite artist invited you to an event where you can hang out with them and make new friends would you go?”

Invest your time into your fans instead of only social media campaigns and your show money and sales will increase along with “pre-sales” of your next project where you may not need to do a Kickstarter campaign.

And then when your ready, you may want to try Pledge Music, the Kickstarter for music that we really like.

 

How to get people to come to shows

Monday, October 19th, 2009

Tim Sweeney, one of the music industry’s most sought after experts and consultants, offers this advice….

A few weeks ago a new artist called me and asked how he can get more people to a new venue he wanted to play. The booker told him as the opener he had to bring 25 people. Not an overwhelming number by any stretch. The only problem was he was averaging 5-10 people per show.

I asked him what he had done to promote his previous shows. He sent me copies of his emails or should I say, “show announcements.” He discovered about 2 percent of his mailing list responded to his emails and he wasn’t sure if anyone was ever coming to a show. With that in mind, I told him let’s start with a basic idea, go through your mailing list and make a list of fans you feel you can count on to really support you. He came back with a list of 57 people who lived in the area of the new venue. I told him to start calling each one. For the people he didn’t have phone numbers for, simply email them a note asking them to call him, nothing else.

We talked in great length about what his conversations should be about and also we wrote a new email to go out to the rest of the list. While he first complained about the amount of time it would take to call everyone, I reminded him of the joy of playing to an empty venue.

To make a long story short, 39 people came because of the phone calls and another 16 came from the new email. Then as life goes, he learned some other important lessons that night at the show.

As the “opener” he brought 55. The person who played after him brought 10 and the “headliner” brought 4. Not only did the booker get mad at the other artists, he gave their money to my guy and told him he would pay him double if he played there next month as the headliner! The other artists asked him how he got so many people to come. They said they had sent out emails like they always did and didn’t know why people didn’t come.

The comical ending to the story is that the artist sold 21 CDs to the people including fans of the other artists and even one to the writer from the newspaper who always ignored him. The writer told him he was there to review the headliner but came early because he really liked my guy’s email about the show. Good thing he called all those people and connected with them more personally then an email!

The moral of the story? Most likely you got someone’s email address from talking to them in person. You had a connection with them for them to give it to you. Pick up the phone whenever possible and continue the relationship. You call the bookers to get a show, the press for a story, industry people to see if they reviewed your music, call your fans!

– Tim Sweeney (www.TimSweeney.com)

DIY takes more time than many think

Tuesday, September 29th, 2009

Imogen HeapBuilding a successful career in music on your own terms and with your own two hands is a difficult task – the business side and the art of self promotion, may rain on the “rockstar” parade.

Your reaction may be – is it all worth it?

Another successful example of the wonders of social media and the marketing genius behind a talented DIY (Do It Yourself) artist, describes Imogen Heap as she tweeted us through the 2 years leading up to the release of Ellipse. Yes, she has a major record label, and when she began promoting Ellipse she already had a committed fan base – a host of films and TV shows featuring her music.  But with Ellipse Heap has expanded her reach exponentially thanks to her determination.  She refinanced her house to fund recording, and with over 1 million twitter followers, she communicates constantly with her fans. ” I’ve been tweeting about making my new album, Ellipse (out 24th Aug). Now… I guess I’ll be tweeting about how it gets from my studio to your ears.”

Using Twitter to allow her fans a glimpse into the world of a “rockstar” with a few lines of text en route to a Berlin airport, or while preparing for a video shoot –  responding fans RT or reply, just as friends would, and as the relationship grows – so grows the fan base and eventually trickle through revenue.

So, is it all worth it – considering the artist/fan relationship is the “expected” in today’s music marketplace and that relationship also takes a lot of time and energy to maintain – and with every successful relationship, takes time to nurture?  Being ‘all about the music’  is being about your career, and there are many other responsibilities vying for your attention.  Depending how deeply you feel your passion, and what sacrifices you’re willing to surrender in order to manifest a dream into reality – is the hard work, commitment and dedication really worth it – time will tell.  Join as many music networking sites as you possibly can, and build your Twitter profile, and may be the most important in your arsenal of social media tools.

And if you need a hand, don’t forget – There is professional help, that’s what we’re here for!

Emerging artists use new tools for success

Monday, September 21st, 2009

The growing number of social-networking sites aimed at bringing aspiring musicians and loyal music fans together,  gives way to greater control of an artist’s career, while entertaining music lovers everywhere.

Encouraging the emerging artist to connect with fans, and promoting music is the purpose of sites such as Ourstage.com . Among its many partners,  Ourstage has joined with MTV for the Emerging Artist Program.  Sonicbids.com brings the artist and promoter together, and is a place where any band from any genre anywhere in the world, can come to find and connect with any type of music promoter, licensor or broadcaster — easily, effectively, and quickly.

As technology advances at such a rapid pace, so goes the advancement of innovative ways to meet the challenges of music promotion and the business of making music.  Unlike the new frontiers of days ago big band Radio, and major labels, this new wave of Music Business done better sets out community guidelines that its independent members must agree to:

“We like to think we’re in this together, meaning we provide the platform to showcase your talent, but we need artists’ help too.  Keep your profile updated, keep uploading into our channels, make friends, recruit fans—help us help you.”
Ourstage Community Values

When the “help them to help you” gets overwhelming, there are professionals like Pro Soul Alliance to assist artists while allowing them to keep in control of their career.

Press Releases – an important part of publicity campaigns

Monday, August 17th, 2009

Using a well-written press release and highly targeted campaign to announce your music-associated event, such as a CD release, an upcoming tour, or a charity concert, can get you more publicity than thousands of advertising dollars ever will – if, done correctly.

A press release (or news release) is used to bring an artist or business “free” publicity. A press release is a simple, to the point release that provides news to reporters, editors, and other media people. The publication of your press release will be free. Writing a good press release is a valuable skill. Preparation involves three key points – When, How and Who (to send it to).

The key focus of your press release is that it needs to be “newsworthy”, after all, a press release is supposed to be news. A writer, or editor has a responsibility to inform their readers. A well written and interesting article is far more likely to make print than one that’s sloppy, and shouts “advertising”.

Typically a press release is distributed to mainstream or national media outlets that receive every industry specific announcement known to man. The idea of submitting your press release to a national publication early in your career may result in it being ignored. Tim Sweeney, the music industry’s most highly sought after expert and consultant in the fields of artist development, recommends specifically targeting the daily music publications in your target markets. There are several music newswire services that offer press release distribution, and for a small fee will distribute your press release to some of the top music websites.

Not to be confused with your Artist Profile or Press Kit, a press release is a quick shot of publicity, used only to announce an upcoming event or CD release to your fans. A good press release will help build your online visibility, attract new fans, and boost your music career. Check our next post for more about Press Kit’s and Artist Profiles.

How to present yourself, your music and your career.

Wednesday, July 1st, 2009

Planning then crafting a clear strategy before promoting yourself is the first step in a successful music marketing campaign. It’s an exciting and enthusiastic time, but be careful, the internet is a bottomless database pit. Once posted, once said, and twice repeated, bytes of data remain infinitely embedded in the pages of the world wide web. What might be cute, cool or “bad ass” today, could bite you in your bad ass years from now and might not be so cute, cool or earn you any props.

Presenting yourself in a truthful and professional manner is key to developing and packaging your image. “Pretending to be more than you are – Lying in marketing” – is a great article written by Loren Weisman of the Music Think Tank. We may not agree with Mr. Weisman’s “play it safe” underlying theory, but do agree with keeping it real always. Always have confidence and faith in your talent. Accept and honor where you’re at in this journey. Never “Pretend” to possess unsubstantiated “Bling” or to have accomplished the money and the fame before you make it – don’t lie about your assets, if you’re a starving artist, you’re a starving artist, let your fans share with you, your climb to the top. Take charge of all the wonders of technology that’s available to you. Entertain your fans with your charming personality – let them into your career. Human nature gravitates toward the humble, and when the time comes for you to show your edge, your fans will welcome your success with open arms. Mr. Weisman when he states: “A strong professional package and promotional presence goes a very long way while a fake or weak presence will hurt you more than you know.” We’re not even discussing the business aspect – that’s another posting!

The story of a young man known as Souljaboy tellem comes to mind – his “do-it-yourself” marketing campaign built his fan base, his recognition, and he rose to the top by using an honest portrayal of his talent, personality and character. When asked what was the secret of his success, he’s reported as saying he was having fun, and he kept it real. Watch this sample of how this young master continues to reach out to his fans!

Honesty, hard work, taking a few risks, and fine tuning your art, is how to present yourself, your music and your career.