Ok, so this is my second column for Nine Circles where I said that I would go over some “insider tips” on how to properly market and promote your band. The first column seemed to get a good response as I had quite a few people message me and tell me that they enjoyed it. I’m really happy with all of the comments I received and hopefully you will continue to read/enjoy my ramblings.
This time around, the main thing I want to write about is a common misconception that many bands have. Most bands seem to think that if they play great music and look cool, that blogs and magazines are going to somehow find out about it. They seem to think that if they write a bunch of great songs and put them out on Bandcamp that the world will come rushing to listen and they will be on the front cover of Metal Hammer and being interviewed by Metalsucks (Editorial Note: it would be better to be interviewed by Nine Circles!) in no time flat.
Instead what happens is that the band finishes their music, gets someone to do some cool art, uploads the album to Bandcamp and it gets ignored by the general metal population. Then the band proceeds to spam internet message boards with links to their masterpiece and attempts to friend/DM every writer whose name they are familiar with. People still ignore them and the band becomes frustrated and blames the lack of attention on the fact that “no one buys music anymore”. Then they go on their personal Facebook pages and write posts about how the music industry sucks and no one appreciates artists.
The truth in fact though is that the reason why many good bands do not get the attention they deserve is because instead of taking the time to do proper promotion, they just put their music out there and expect people to find it. I sometimes wonder if these people have watched Field of Dreams too many times as they seem to think that people will somehow magically just find out about their band. Sadly this is not the case and you need to put in some work to get people to find out about your band and music.
Instead of rushing your music out there the second you’ve completed your recordings, plan out a campaign to lead up to the release. Hiring a publicist is the easiest way to go about doing this. Yes it can be expensive, but if you find a good one it will pay off big time. Also, with the amount of bands out there nowadays, many sites/magazines won’t even consider your album if a publicist isn’t pitching it. If you do decide to hire a publicist, make sure you hire them at least a few months prior to releasing the album so they actually have time to get you some press. If you hire them *after* your album released it will make things far more difficult and you will most likely not get the results you want.
That concludes this month’s column. If you have any ideas on what you would like me to cover next time, you can reach out to me on twitter: @dewarpr. If you have any other questions or comments feel free to PM me on our Facebook page.
– Curtis Dewar