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Music Promotion Secrets


The Poor Man's (Musician's) Guide to Free Advertising

Publicity and Public Relations

Having problems with music promotion? Can’t get people to come to your shows? Chances are you need some publicity…

… assuming your band doesn’t suck ;-)

Music promotion is one of the most important (and most often forgotten) components of a successful music career.

Technically, publicity is part of public relations. I listed it separately here because publicity plays such a large role in the success of a band or artist.

Basically, we’re talking about ways to get free advertising. Most often this makes people think of newspaper and radio coverage. Although these are two good examples of free music promotion, they are only the tip of the iceberg.

If you want to get specific, a guy who comes to your show and tells his friends about you is providing free advertising. If his recommendation is strong enough, the guy he talks to may tell three other guys, and so on…

Don’t think that counts as advertising?

… you’re wrong!

Word of mouth is the most powerful marketing force on the planet… because that endorsement is coming from a trusted friend, rather than an unknown (such as a radio or TV commercial)

Huge corporations spend millions of dollars trying to stir word of mouth promotion, within groups called opinion leaders. Why?

… because it works!

Alright, we’re getting a little bit ahead of ourselves. Before you can start a word of mouth buzz, you have to get people out to your shows to begin with. The problem is that many clubs aren’t willing to get off their butts to do music promotion for the bands that play there. This brings up an important question:
Is it the responsibility of the band or the club to promote an event?

Answer: Who cares!

The people who argue this point are the ones who lose the game. While they’re busy trying to bring justice and equality to the world, the band down the street is handling their own music promotion. When one artist draws a thousand and the other draws fifty, who do you think will be asked back…

… not the guy that bugged them about promotion!

Bottom line: If you’re not willing to get out there and do your own music promotion, nine out of ten clubs will find someone else who will.

Moral of the story...

Put some thought and effort into music promotion and you'll be ahead of ninety percent of your competition.


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