Bob Baker's Indie Music Promotion Blog

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


November 15, 2012

Music Biz Disappointments: When Bad News Turns Good

A few months ago, my friend Mike was worried. The drum store where he had been giving lessons for a couple of decades had just closed.

Even though he made money playing out a bit and ran a home recording studio, this turn of events represented a big chunk of his income that suddenly dried up. The stakes were high, since Mike has a home and a family to support.

This week I talked to Mike for the first time in a while. I hesitantly asked, "So, how is your teaching schedule these days?"

He slowly said he still had a few students, but then he lit up as he launched into a long list of new things he was doing: New bands he was playing with, new studio clients, new fill-in gigs that came his way.

"Financially, it was rough for a while," Mike admitted. "But now so many cool things have come along to fill the void. If I had known all these opportunities were available to me, I would have cut back on teaching years ago."

He had made the mistake that many musicians (and most people in general) make -- sticking to what they know, inside their comfort zone.

One of the big reasons Mike continued teaching so much over the years was a genuine interest in supporting his students and seeing them grow. But in doing so he had to turn down a lot of new offers that came his way -- staying with his safe, predictable routine instead of taking chances.

That's understandable. We all do that to some degree.

But what he discovered over the course of the last few months was that the store closing and his short-term loss of teaching income was a blessing in disguise.

So ... what can you learn from Mike's experience?

What are you holding on to that isn't serving you any more?

What opportunities are you passing by because you maintain the status quo in your life?

What "disappointing" turn of events are you cursing instead of looking for the hidden opportunity?


-Bob

The photo above is by Mick & Wout.
Get more tips like these when you subscribe to my free Buzz Factor ezine — the longest running music career tips email newsletter on the planet. Since 1995. Learn more about the free subscription here.


Or just sign up using this quick and easy form:

Your First Name
Your Primary Email


Your email address will not be shared. Unsubscribe at any time.

Connect with

posted by Bob Baker @ 9:34 PM   3 comments


November 08, 2012

Music for Kids: How to Promote & Sell It

Have you ever thought about writing, recording and selling music for children? The thought crosses a lot of musicians' minds. If you fall into this category, you'll want to listen to the last two episodes of my Artist Empowerment Radio podcast.

They feature an awesome, two-part interview with Mr. Billy, a dynamic independent artist who has been successful in the children's music genre for 10 years.

Even if you have no interest in music for kids, you will get a lot out of these power-packed episodes. In these two audio interviews Mr. Billy talks about his DIY artist approach and how he books more than 200 shows a year at libraries and schools.

He also shares some incredibly creative ways he presents his live rock and roll shows to engage the audience (not only the children, but the parents too) and how he inspires them to incorporate their smartphones and texting into the show.

This is an energizing interview you don't want to miss!

Listen to part 1 of the How to Promote and Sell Music for Kids interview now.

Bob

P.S. While you're at it, subscribe to the Artist Empowerment Radio podcast here on iTunes.
Get more tips like these when you subscribe to my free Buzz Factor ezine — the longest running music career tips email newsletter on the planet. Since 1995. Learn more about the free subscription here.


Or just sign up using this quick and easy form:

Your First Name
Your Primary Email


Your email address will not be shared. Unsubscribe at any time.

Connect with

posted by Bob Baker @ 1:53 PM   0 comments


November 06, 2012

10 Ways to Rock Your Facebook Music Fan Page

Okay, so you already have a Facebook fan page for your band, music company, or yourself as an artist. Great. And now you're using it effectively as fans flock to it and are highly engaged with you and all your musical activities. Right?

Huh? You say things could be a lot better with that fan page? And what's that? You say it's actually been a bit quiet there lately?

Well, what you need is a new plan to start rocking that sleepy little piece of online real estate. Use this checklist to reenergize yourself and your fans on Facebook:

1) Keep your content fresh. The key to an effective Facebook fan page is ongoing activity. So be sure to post something new on a regular basis. I recommend at least once a day if not more. Once or twice a week won't cut it. To make it rock, you need to have ongoing activity there. So post often.

2) Know your peak hours. Studies have shown that Facebook users are most active at 11 AM, 3 PM and 8 PM - with morning updates being the most effective. Of course, you must figure time zones and where your fans are into this equation. I've found I get a lot of responses during the early evening hours in my time zone, when people who work are home after dinner and before bedtime.

3) Encourage fans to tag themselves in photos. Take lots of pictures at your shows and post them to your page. Encourage fans to post their own photos as well. And ask them to identify ("tag") themselves in the photos, which will cause the images to appear on their personal profiles too - thereby spreading the word to more people.

4) Respond to comments, or at least "Like" them. When people take the time to leave a meaningful comment on your fan page, you will create a lot of good will by commenting back. At the very least, click the "Like" link related to the comment, which will appear in that person’s list of notifications. Find some way to acknowledge that you saw and appreciate the comment!

5) Share and serve, don't always sell. Nothing turns off a fan more than a constant barrage of sales messages. Use your fan page status updates to communicate with your fans - not just promote to them. Share interesting stories and links, new music by you and other similar artists, and other cool things you have discovered that they would most likely enjoy.

6) Show your personality. Share your sense of humor and quick wit (assuming you possess those qualities :-) Make your updates lively and engaging - not just dry announcements. Post photos of things you come across that make you laugh. (Like the church sign I saw in the middle of a summer heat wave. It read "The devil called, and he wants his heat back.")

7) Give stuff away. New demo tracks, live recordings, video clips, wallpaper, screen savers, you name it. Don't cling so tightly to everything you create. Loosen up and give a lot of it away. Generosity will go a long way toward making a connection with your fans.

8) Ask for feedback and pose questions. One of the best ways to encourage interaction is to ask for it. On a regular basis, ask questions on your fan page: What should we play at our next show? What's your favorite new artist? How should we celebrate the singer's birthday next week? Which of these three songs do you like best? Ask, ask, ask!

9) Thank your fans. The people who support your musical endeavors allow you to do what you do. They are your true dream team. Acknowledge the important role they play in your life. Thank them - and thank them often!

10) Make sales offers too. Of course, while you're delivering value, giving stuff away, engaging your fans, and interacting with them ... don't forget to make them aware that you do indeed have stuff for sale. Don't go overboard with sales pitches, but don't shy away from them entirely either. Strike a balance. Give your fans an opportunity to help and support you!

In what other ways do you (or could you) generate activity and engagement on your Facebook music fan page? I welcome your comments.

Bob

Get more tips like these when you subscribe to my free Buzz Factor ezine — the longest running music career tips email newsletter on the planet. Since 1995. Learn more about the free subscription here.


Or just sign up using this quick and easy form:

Your First Name
Your Primary Email


Your email address will not be shared. Unsubscribe at any time.

Connect with

posted by Bob Baker @ 2:26 PM   2 comments


November 01, 2012

Holiday Music Marketing Tips & Success Stories

UPDATE: The new Holiday Music Marketing course is now out. Learn more about it and watch the first 12 minutes of the program here ...

Do You Have a Christmas Holiday Music Marketing Success Story to share? If so, I want to feature you!

I'm looking for real world examples to include in a new multimedia resource called "Holiday Music Marketing: How to Sell More Music, Book More Gigs & Make More Money During the Holiday Season."

If I use your example, I'll give you access to this guide at no cost. If it's really good, I may even record an audio interview with you about it.

So, have you ever done something creative to:
  • Sell more music and merchandise during the Christmas holidays?
  • Book a special show or get more people out to a gig because of a holiday theme?
  • Make a special offer to your fans that made money during the holidays?
  • Bring attention to your music during the holiday season?
I'm looking for examples that got solid results (a surge in holiday sales, bodies in the door, mega media exposure, a special connection with your fans).

And send it to me ASAP, because I'm going to put this together next week!

Bob
Get more tips like these when you subscribe to my free Buzz Factor ezine — the longest running music career tips email newsletter on the planet. Since 1995. Learn more about the free subscription here.


Or just sign up using this quick and easy form:

Your First Name
Your Primary Email


Your email address will not be shared. Unsubscribe at any time.

Connect with

posted by Bob Baker @ 10:38 AM   0 comments