Bob Baker's Indie Music Promotion Blog

Music marketing ideas for DIY artists, managers, promoters and music biz pros


March 30, 2006

Music Marketing Scavenger Hunt - Part 3

Let's continue with the growing list of ideas I came up with on a recent trip to my local public library.

To refresh your memory, I went to the library and challenged myself to find five good music marketing ideas. I ended up with about a dozen. I limited myself to the magazine section and purposely did NOT use any music-specific magazines as a reference.

Here are some more ideas that aren't marketing tactics per se, but they can be used to promote yourself a LOT better:


Source: "Psychology Today" magazine - March/April 2006

Original Idea: An article on overcoming procrastination suggests putting the brakes on negative self-talk and using the "10-Minute Rule."

Music Marketing Spin: When you find yourself putting off an important self-promotion activity, stop telling yourself that marketing is "so hard" or "I don't have time" or "I can't handle the rejection." Those are simply perceptions you have chosen to buy into.

Also, when you start making promotion avoidance excuses, enact the "10-Minute Rule." Choose a small part of the overall task that you can easily handle ... and commit to spending just 10 minutes doing it. Only 10 minutes. No more.

After 10 minutes, you can decide whether to continue or not. You are free to stop after 10. But often, once involved in the activity, you'll find that it's much easier to keep at it and stay on track.


Source: "Health" magazine - March 2006

Original Idea: An article on the importance of taking time for yourself encourages readers to reframe their usual negative statements regarding how they tend to their own interests and personal needs.

Music Marketing Spin: When you find yourself saying, "How can I find time for music promotion when I can barely get through the day with work and family responsibilities?" ... replace that thought with: "If I take care of my deepest passions and soul purpose, I'll be a happier, more content person -- and better able to tackle the other challenges in my life."


Are these ideas helpful? I hope so.

To your success!

-Bob

P.S. For a whole collection of indie music promotion ideas, check out the new Guerrilla Music Marketing Power Course or Music Marketing Crash Course.

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posted by Bob Baker @ 12:40 PM   1 comments


March 29, 2006

Music Marketing Scavenger Hunt - Part 2

In yesterday's post I described my "music marketing idea challenge" visit to the public library and shared some fresh concepts I came up with.

Today I give you three more self-promotion ideas sparked by another unlikely source.

Source: "The Artist's Magazine" - May 2005

Original Idea: An article on fine arts promotion suggested that painters should "offer to write about art happenings for the local newspaper."

Music Marketing Spin: Offer to write music reviews or commentaries for your local music rag. This will give you a higher profile in your community.

Original Idea: Some artists include small images of their paintings on their business cards.

Music Marketing Spin: Print your CD cover or promo photo on your business card for extra impact -- especially if the image is eye-catching.

Original Idea: Artists who want to bypass galleries should hang art in coffee shops and offer the owners a commission on any resulting sales.

Music Marketing Spin: Give away in-store play copies of your CD to specialty retail shops that cater to your ideal fans. Offer to place additional copies on the counter so people who inquire about the music can purchase your CD.

Check tomorrow's blog post for more.

-Bob

P.S. If you haven't grabbed your copy yet, be sure to get my new e-report, called Indie Music Marketing Secrets. It's free.

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posted by Bob Baker @ 12:26 PM   1 comments


March 28, 2006

Music Marketing Idea Scavenger Hunt

Where do your best music promotion ideas come from?

If you consider only what other artists and bands are doing, you're cheating yourself. The seeds of great marketing ideas are everywhere -- literally!

In fact, I just challenged myself to go on a Music Marketing Idea Scavenger Hunt. I'll reveal some of my findings below ... then challenge you to do the same and report back what you come up with.

Here's what I did:

Last week I went to the public library and told myself I would not leave until I had found five good music marketing ideas. Well, I ended up with about 12.

Instead of using the entire library, I limited myself to the magazine section only. AND I purposely did NOT use any music-specific magazines as a reference.

The whole idea was to generate fresh concepts using non-music related news as my starting point -- and then seeing where each original idea led me.

Here's some of what I came up with using only a single issue of one magazine ...


Source: "Publishers Weekly" - March 6, 2006

Original Idea: Some smaller niche book publishers put out a magazine on their core topic, in addition to a line of books. Example: Entrepreneur Media produces "Entrepreneur" magazine and SmallBizBooks.com.

Music Marketing Spin: In addition to a web site dedicated exclusively to your music and CDs, consider publishing an ezine or web site for fans of your overall genre. And be sure it covers a wide variety of well-known and lesser-known artists.

Examples: David Nevue's SoloPianoRadio.com and Marc Gunn's CelticMP3s.com.

Here are a couple more brainstorms from "Publishers Weekly" ...

Original Idea: An ad for a book titled "Yoga for Regular Guys."

Music Marketing Spin: How about making your CD very targeted with a built-in marketing hook in the title? Consider "Classical Music for Regular Joes" or "Punk Rock for Sassy Chicks" or "Folk Music for Vegetarians." The possibilities are endless.

Original Idea: An ad for a book titled "What Color Is Your Jock Strap?" -- a spoof of the perennial career book "What Color Is Your Parachute?"

Music Marketing Spin: Give your CD a parody-type title, such as:
  • "Dark Side of the Spoon"
  • "Appetite for Obstruction"
  • "The Stravinsky Code"
  • "Heavy Metal for Dummies"

Check back for more of my Scavenger Hunt brainstorms. In the meantime, I want you to go on your own idea-generation safari. Go to your local library or bookstore or whatever ... and challenge yourself to come up with five cool promotion ideas.

Then come back here and post a comment detailing what you came up with. Let's share our best ideas with each other and prove that good marketing concepts can indeed be found anywhere.

Oh, I gotta run. I just spotted another idea I need to capture!

To your success!

-Bob

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posted by Bob Baker @ 2:56 PM   2 comments


March 27, 2006

FREE Indie Music Promotion Tips

Want a mega-dose of my most potent music marketing ideas?

I just posted a new web page where I spell out how you can get your paws on a new free ebook I put together called "Indie Music Marketing Secrets."

Not only that, but you can also sign up to get a free 5-Part E-mail Course filled with surefire stategies you can start using right away to attract more fans, sell more CDs, and make more money with your music.

Sound good? Then check out this link.

-Bob

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posted by Bob Baker @ 11:10 PM   0 comments


March 21, 2006

Filk, Fark, Cat Lovers & Sex Deviants

What do cat lovers, drinking songs, sexual deviants, and Gypsies in Rome have to do with music marketing and self-promotion? And what exactly is filk and fark?

These questions and more are answered during a special SXSW 2006 episode of my Artist Empowerment Radio podcast.

Be sure to tune in. Just click, listen and learn!

-Bob

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posted by Bob Baker @ 2:38 PM   2 comments


March 20, 2006

SXSW 2006 Memories

It was hectic and a little chaotic. It was overcast and a bit dreary. But SXSW 2006 was exhilarating and fun.

Here's a little glimpse into my photo diary ...




Hanging with Aaron (left) and Ben from Music Manufacturing Services at the SXSW Trade Show.



My cool Philly friends from the band Showin' Tell.



Sixth Street, a hub of live music venues, is a blur of humanity on St. Pat's night.




Melissa Ferrick performs a powerful unannounced set at Ruta Maya.


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posted by Bob Baker @ 2:05 PM   0 comments


March 17, 2006

Music Tips O' Plenty

Someone recently pointed out the sheer volume of resources I've collected on my web sites over the years. That made me think that it might be a good time to remind you of some of these (most of them are no-cost), along with some new items I'm excited to offer you:

  • Guerrilla Music Marketing, Encore Edition - Sample eBook. You've heard of the iPod Mini. Well, this is the Encore Edition Mini. Download a complimentary copy of the first part of my new book from www.ourmedia.org/node/185754. And share it with as many people as you want.
  • Read This Article With Your Ears. Here's something new. Check out one of my more popular articles in both text and audio format.
  • A Lot More Sizzle With the Steak. I just revamped the entire look of my Music Marketing Crash Course web site. This is an amazing collection. I wanted the design to reflect that sizzle. The old layout fell short. I think this one gets the job done.
  • A fresh collection of 12 Music Success Articles

  • A new, easy-to-use Order Form listing every music resource available from my site

  • An Indie Music News Feed featuring the latest headlines from some of my favorite music blogs
Thanks for reading and showing your appreciation for my work. Please know that I truly appreciate you and all you do to share your music with the world.

Now ... get out there and promote yourself!

-Bob

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posted by Bob Baker @ 1:32 PM   0 comments


March 16, 2006

Your Biggest Music Career Challenge

I want to know. What are your biggest indie music headaches?

Shoot an e-mail to Bob AT TheBuzzFactor.com (replace AT with @, of course) and give me your top three challenges.

Do they include getting people to gigs, selling more CDs, or attracting more fans to your web site? Maybe it's getting radio airplay, garnering media exposure, or publishing a blog or podcast.

Whatever they are, let me know. I'll use the topics you send to help me craft the articles, blogs, podcasts, books and reports that will help the most number of indie musicians.

Let the griping begin!

-Bob

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posted by Bob Baker @ 1:26 PM   0 comments


March 15, 2006

Are You Shortchanging Yourself?

One of the things I'm looking forward to in Austin is finally meeting my longtime music pal Mark Gunn in person. He's a smart indie musician who has posted a lot of great promo ideas online over the years.

In an article called The Price Is Right, Marc gets pissed about people who suggest that indie artists should charge no more than $10 for their CDs. He writes, "How do I say this nicely ... That's Bull Sh*t! It's hard enough for us to make a decent living selling CDs, but to sell them for $10? Unless you have less than 10 songs, don't listen to 'em."

Marc continues, "Will more people buy the [lower priced] CD? Well, probably ... a few. But you know what? If people like your music, they WILL pay $15 for a CD! Surprise, surprise, surprise. They may hesitate a bit, but they will eventually buy it, and when they do, it will mean so much more to them. Don't be fooled. You are a professional. Now act like one."

Great attitude. In the article, Mark also points out another great reason to raise your prices: A higher price point allows you room to discount your CDs from time to time. This makes your fans feel good because they got a deal -- and you still make a few bucks.

-Bob

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posted by Bob Baker @ 1:21 PM   11 comments


March 13, 2006

You the Underdog = Media Exposure

According to publicity expert Kevin Nunley, you can greatly increase your odds of landing media coverage if you can tie your story into "one of America's cherish beliefs."

He writes:

Story lines such as "the little guy takes on corruption" or "formerly poor single mom takes on the business world and succeeds" or "one guy gets fed up and cleans up his neighborhood" are stories the media always jumps on. Even if you're selling gum, there is probably some way for you to connect your business with one of the many stories that fit into the cherished belief mold.

Well, if someone can successfully use that angle selling gum, certainly you could get coverage as a musician who overcomes an obstacle:
  • Have you overcome an illness or disability?

  • Did you recently have a brush with disaster and maybe even wrote a song about it?

  • Or could you simply play up how you are an indie artist who is making waves in a sea of over-programmed, corporate-sponsored music?
Find the drama in your life and don't be bashful about using that to teach and enlighten others through the media -- while giving your music a nice exposure boost at the same time.

I got this idea from Nunley's awesome 12-page report called "How to Get Free Media Publicity by Sending Press Releases Online." It's part of my brand-new Killer Music Press Kits - Deluxe Edition package, which features the classic "Killer Press Kits" report, along with sample press releases, a 29-Point Checklist, extra bonus material, and a spoken word audio track that guides you through the whole promo package creation process.

Until next time: Be the underdog ... and win!

-Bob

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posted by Bob Baker @ 2:51 PM   2 comments


March 06, 2006

When Talent Shows Attack!

They're back! Randy, Paula, Simon and everyone's favorite over-hyped reality TV talent show -- American Idol. Well, I've ranted about it before. But in case you missed them, be sure to check out two things:

  • My article What's Wrong with American Idol?

  • A radio interview I did on KMOX (1120 AM) in St. Louis.

  • -Bob

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    posted by Bob Baker @ 6:20 PM   2 comments


    March 03, 2006

    Bob Heading to Austin for SXSW

    It's been several years since I attended the cluster-funk known as South By Southwest (conveniently abbreviated SXSW -- which is pronounced "susswah.")

    But I'm returning to the wonderful music oasis of Austin this year. So far, here are two cool public things I'm doing. (Don't ask about the private things :-)

    Friday, March 17 - 1 to 2 PM or so
    I'll be hanging out at the Music Manufacturing Services booth at the SXSW Trade Show. Stop by to say hi, get an autographed book, discuss the state of indie music in the modern era, or hear what I think about Ryan Seacrest's current hair style :-)

    Saturday, March 18 - 1 to 2 PM
    I will present a free one-hour workshop at an "Invasion of the GoGirls @ SXSW" event. My talk will be called "How to Promote Yourself, Make Money & Live Your Music Dreams." Held at Ruta Maya, 3601 South Congress, Austin 78704. Phone: 512-707-9637.

    Best yet, did I mention that it's free and open to the public!

    The whole GoGirls "invasion" sounds pretty awesome. Madalyn Sklar and her crew will be showcasing the best emerging talent in seven "unofficial" SXSW showcases. Details at http://www.gogirlsmusic.com/sxsw/

    Hope to see you there!

    -Bob

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    posted by Bob Baker @ 11:48 AM   0 comments