Bob Baker's The Buzz Factor
Music marketing tips and self-promotion ideas for independent songwriters, musicians and bands.
Music marketing ideas for DIY artists, managers, promoters and music biz pros
February 28, 2008
What's Your Music News Hook?
News hooks are suggestions you make to media people via press releases, cover letters, e-mails or phone calls. If your news hooks are strong enough, lots of editors and writers will bite and cover you in the press.
So who or what should your news hooks be about? Most musicians put themselves front and center. And that makes sense, right? After all, they are trying to promote themselves. The drawback with this approach is that the focus is on the artist ... and not on the needs of the journalist.
To be a successful self-promoter, you need to learn to craft news hooks that keep the interests of the media person and his or her audience foremost in mind.
Want some good and bad examples?
"Great New CD Out Now by Local Band!"
Sorry, but this is not a very effective hook. Thousands of CDs come out every week. Yet another new one from another up-and-coming artist is not "news." Dig a little deeper.
"New Music CD Celebrates the 10-Year Anniversary of the Monica Lewinsky Scandal"
I know, this one is bizarre. But admit it, when you read it, you probably thought, "Now that's a weird concept for an album. I wonder what those songs would sound like?" Imagine what fun you could have with the song titles. A news hook like this stands out because it has a specific story that separates it from "here's another rock or pop or hip-hop CD."
"Look Out World: XYZ Is the Band to Watch in 2008"
This is a classic example of the over-hyped PR pitch. Most journalists roll their eyes at this type of bombastic announcement before tossing it in the trash (or hitting the delete key). Don't tell people how awesome you are. Paint a descriptive positive picture, but let the journalist determine the adjectives.
"Punk Rocker Offers 5 Tips for Overcoming Addictions"
If you have a significant personal story to share, feel free to make it a part of your news hook, especially if your experience can help other people. Have you overcome a personal obstacle, fought a deadly disease, feel strongly about a cause, or experienced something extraordinary? Chances are, people will want to know about it, and the music media may very well be eager to cover it.
So, let me ask you ... What's your music news hook?
P.S. For more music publicity tips and tactics, check out the Indie Music Publicity Home Study Course or Killer Music Press Kits: Deluxe Edition.
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What About Bob?
Bob Baker is an author, speaker, teacher, indie musician and former music magazine editor dedicated to showing musicians of all kinds how to get exposure, connect with fans, sell more music, and increase their incomes.
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