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"You just gotsta have a music marketing plan!"

What? You don't have a music marketing plan? Oh dear!

Your music marketing plan plays an important role in your independent business.  It's vital to have some kind of plan to return to when things get chaotic.

You've gone through the entire process of writing, recording, mixing, mastering, replicating and distributing your music.  Now what?

You now want to create a detailed strategy for how to get your music to the people who will appreciate it and possibly support you.

Attention! Do you get it?

Attention is the name of the game when it comes to marketing music.

You want to focus your own marketing plan on creating an effective marketing strategy in order to attract, direct, engage and keep the attention of potential tribe members (formerly known as "fans").

Read that sentence again because it sums up your mission.

You only get the potential for music business success when you have the ability to attract and keep attention on you and your aural offerings.

You will therefore create an integrated music marketing plan which describes in detail what you want to achieve,  how you plan to achieve it,  why you think you can achieve it, which obstacles you face and how much it will cost.

First...

Get wise...

You probably know by now that the web will play a central role in your music marketing plan.  Make sure you have the basic web skills needed to do internet music marketing.

Next, you want to research guerrilla marketing techniques in articles and books written by DIY musicians and music marketers (Google It!).  This gives you a perspective on which music marketing is used,  and what works.

Know Your Music and Yourself...

You have to describe and label yourself and your music.  I know.  Sounds very corporate.  You can't be vague though...

Attention,  what you want from marketing,  needs to be attracted, engaged and focused on something,  and that something is your image.

You don't want to fool yourself into thinking "image is everything" as there is much more to marketing.  That said,  you must have a distinctive edge to your image should you want success in the music business.

You will go a long way by creating a good musician press kit for both your online and offline publicity because this helps you shape your image in the media.

The main thing you want to have for your online exposure,  apart from the obvious images and music samples,  is an interesting attention-grabbing bio and description of your music.

You have on average 3 to 5 seconds to catch your potential tribe members attention and no more than a paragraph to describe yourself and your music.

"What does your music sound like?"

You will be asked the above question more often then you can imagine!

You may not like to compare your music with existing music.  You have to however answer the above question clearly to even get someone to listen to your music online.

Yes, it is "all about the music".  To get people to listen to music online  though is all in the description.

So, you won't say for example...

"[Your Band/Artist Name] makes unique fresh music unlike anything you know"

... you want something more along the line of...

"[Your Band/Artist Name] packs a pure polka punch, mixed with dub and ragga to make for a surreal sonic explosion."

Silly examples,  though you'd be amazed at how many DIY muso's and producers think they can have a "my music speaks for itself bro!" attitude on the web.

Ain't happening.  Describe yourself and your music well or be prepared to go unnoticed.

You'll find however that when you have your online and offline musician's press kit and marketing materials ready you can use them in many different places and profiles online.

So,  things get easier once you have your image, bio and description crystal clear.  You'll then only update it as you go along.

Next...

Know Your Finances...

How much do you have set aside for marketing your music?  How do you plan to finance your music marketing plan objectives?

You already know by now that not much comes for free in the world of business.

You will therefore need a clear picture of your current financial situation and marketing budget because you don't want to end up short of marketing money when you need it most.

Next...

Know Your Potential Tribe Member...

You won't get far by trying to please everyone.  You have to go to the people who are most likely to become members of your tribe.

Who are they? Where are they?  What do they like? Where do they go? What do they like to buy? How much do they earn and how much do they spend?  What excites them? What do they want?  Keep on asking...

You will find all your music marketing plan more economical and effective when you know whose attention you want to attract.

You won't end up wasting money on marketing to everybody.

You'll focus your marketing efforts where they count and work best.

Once you know your ideal tribe member and you know you have to offer them you are ready to reach out.  How?

Next...

Discover Your Options...

You can find hundreds,  if not thousands of marketing companies and services you can use for independent music marketing.

You'll may also find the amount of music promotion sites, independent music podcasts and radio,  social network sites and the host of other services you can use mind-blowing!

You will therefore want to make the time to research and decide which companies, sites and services to include in your marketing strategy.

Your choice will depend on factors which include your budget,  your target audience and the amount of time you have available for marketing.

Stick to only the most effective companies which will get done what you want done and help you achieve your music marketing objectives.

The general rule is...

... the less you do yourself,  the more you'll pay.

That said,  don't try and do it all yourself!  You have many aspects of your music business to attend to. So,  know what to outsource (the boring stuff of course!).  

Next...

Decide On Your Strategy...

You want all marketing avenues to lead back to your own web site which you'll place at the center of your marketing strategy. You then want to choose the methods,  companies and services you'll use as part of your strategy.

Decide which combination will be most effective and how you will channel attention (targeted web traffic) via the outside sites and services. Your strategy should resemble a funnel where all avenues and channels lead to your central focus point,   your web site.

You then want to make sure your own web site converts your potential tribe members into active tribe members (passionate customers and supporters).

Sketch your strategy out on a large piece of paper to ensure you have clear how it all will work together.

Next...

Create Your DIY Music Marketing Plan...

You now have,  after the above steps,  enough information to commit your own music marketing plan to paper.

If you're looking for investment or a deal you'll have to try stick to a corporate lingo and structure when you write your plan. You'll be as detailed as you can in this case.

If your plan is simply to keep you on track and help you achieve your marketing goals then you can write it in the style and structure which best suits you.

You can use for example the music marketing plan structure below...

* Description of You and Your Music (Product Description)

* Your Main Goals and Objectives -

* Your Marketing Budget -

* Your Tribe (Target Market) -

* Your Market Section -

* Your Competition -

* Your Opportunities -

* Your Obstacles -

* Your Strategy -

Your music marketing plan will act as your map to music business success.  With it you have focus and direction.  Without you'll run around like a headless chicken.

You will always improvise as you execute your plan,  as things tend not to always go as you planned.  Adjust where you must,  and then get back to your plan.

Now,  do what that shoe company says and...

... Just Do It!


Related music marketing articles...

Internet Marketing for Musicians & Producers - Observe the Spider...

Yes,  the humble little Cobweb Spider can teach you a lot about internet music marketing strategy.  Click the above link to discover what the Spider does which you should do too.

The New Web Music Business: 4 Ideas You Must Know & Use...

The above page highlights 4 ideas you need to know of when it comes to creating your own web music business.

Discover Producer & Musician Web Hosting Options...

The above page takes a look at the three routes you can take for musician and producer web hosting and also mentions a few hosts who cater for musicians and producers specifically.

Why Every Musician Now Needs a Website...

Discover 3 big reasons for every good musician or producer needs a website right now in the above article.

Producer & Musician Website Design Tips...

That's right. You can get tons of musician website design tips on the above page.  Discover the basics you need to know to get started with your official artist website.

Contacting Music Bloggers...

The above article gives pointers for when you approach music Bloggers for potential exposure.

Music Success in 9 Weeks (Review)

A review of Ariel Hyatt's Music Success in 9 Weeks


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