Today, the average major music label foists an unhealthy number of samey, middle of the road pop acts upon us whose work has become so commercialised-beyond-recognition as to not actually resemble any real form of music as such. Thankfully though independent DIY musicians and retailers are demonstrating the power of the niche, and the long tail of ‘alternative’ music choices is still frequently coming up with ways to punch above its weight.

See for example the thriving Irish music scene, with bands so against the grain no major would touch them with a barge pole, yet able to tour the world and sell their music in whatever format they wish to a dedicated tribe of followers.

And see the success of Record Store Day to see how independent shops support local and unsigned bands whilst still making money.

With this in mind, many musicians may shun the need for a strategic marketing approach and understandably wince at the thought of parading themselves around in a product demo style fashion. However one of KD marketing’s key aims is to help you be HEARD. And if you’re a musician who prefers obscurity then perhaps this isn’t for you. If however you prefer to make a noise here are some ways to do it that will still allow you to sleep at night..

Once you have crafted your musical genius into a downloadable product, get it online as soon as possible in the following locations. If you don’t want to try all of them, choose the ones you are willing to update regularly and where you think your fans will most likely be found.
  • Last FM
  • MySpace (yip, it still exists)
  • Facebook (use a free App like Bandpage or link to your Spotify account)
  • Soundcloud – ability to create remixes makes it a great place to find collaborators
  • Bandcamp
  • Itunes/ Amazon/ CD Baby
  • BBC Introducing Uploader & AmazingRadio
  • Your own website promoted via Twitter
If you think you don’t have the time or inclination to do this, ask a trusted fan/friend to do it.
  • SEO for musicians: Cynical? Too contrived? Well people still need to find you to hear you. If you are just forming a new band it really is in your interest to give your band a name that will be found when people hear about you and want to Google you. Avoid generic names and names which already exist within another industry. More examples here
  • Branding – Maybe you think style, look and feel and tone of voice are not important, but they are essential in establishing a connection with fans. Read this from Grimes and consider how embracing it might actually be part of your creativity, as long as you are authentic. 
Enough – now go rehearse, record and create the ultimate content.
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