by BREEZY B –   MAY 24,


First impressions are lasting impressions.  Your actions on a daily basis reflect how you are perceived as an artist. Often you are seen before your music is heard.

There are common tactics that are perceived as ‘amateur’ … in other words,  the artists that are really out there killing it and making a living from their music (whether  on an indie or major level) aren’t going about promo in this way – yet these tactics are so common, that most artists mimic what they see others doing instead of learning how to do it themselves, the right way.

The difference between bad marketing and good marketing is, bad marketing talks AT people, good marketing talks with them. Everyday I watch artists, that might potentially have good music, throw their dreams down the drain little by little with every unsolicited  link they send out in  hopes that someone will listen to their song and ‘put them

on’. Understand that you need more than just a listen. I repeat: YOU NEED MORE THAN WST A LISTEN! You need people to engage with you. You need people to share your music with their friends. You need them to want to buy your merch and come to your shows. There is no official blueprint to how to accomplish that, however there are definite ways that DO NOT WORK but yet these tactics are so very common. It’s time to put a stop to this  now.

I’ve had numerous discussions about this on Twitter, through email etc. but I’ve decided to write an article on the subject to really make things clear. Once you are done reading this article, I hope that you are either giving yourself a pat on the back because you do not make these mistakes,  or if you do, I hope that you change your ways and come up   with an actual plan that will really help you reach your goals  (because these tactics surely aren’t going to cut it!).

Here are a list of common promo tactics and the reasons why they aren’t effective: Promo Tactic: Sending out unsolicited links via twitter.

Why It Doesn’t work: Twitter is a social networking site. SOCIAL NETWORKING. Understand what that means. Twitter is a place where things can get spread very quickly, however in order for that to happen, the content must be engaging and ‘retweetable’ … Twitter is not to be used strictly for promotion, it doesn’t work that way. You can spend hours sending out your link to individual people, it will not do anything but waste your time and annoy people before they even listen to your music. You must take a step back and realize what you are doing. If you have to @ people with a link to your music, that just means that you’re not interesting enough for people to actually pay attention to your tweets.

Twitter can be great for building and promoting your brand, but not if you use it strictly as a promo service. You must build your clout by engaging with others, releasing quality content and building a following that looks for you and pays attention to your  tweets.

Promo Tactic: Sending out unsolicited emails.

Why It Doesn’t work: There goes that unsolicited word again! That’s why it doesn’t work. Do YOU open random spam emails? Do you realize how many emails people get everyday? Do you really think that your email stands out with the title ‘Check Out My Music’ or ‘Music Submission’ when sending to a random person that you have never spoken to before? Come on now, you must think before you do. Email marketing is an amazing way to promote yourself, however you should be building your own subscriber list, filled with people that know who you are and want to hear from you. Emailing random people that you have never spoken to before is a waste of your precious time that can be spent being more productive. Also, how do you even know if that person accepts submissions? Most artists send out emails to people without doing any research on that person. They don’t even know why they are approaching  that person,  I guess it’s just to see if they can get someone to listen.

Promo Tactic: Posting a music video to someone’s Facebook and/or tagging a bunch of people that you don’t know in your status.

Why It Doesn’t work: You are talking AT people instead of engaging with them. Just because you are friends with them, doesn’t give you the right to promote your mixtape or freestyle all day by tagging them. You should be making sure that your posts are attracting viewers, so that when you post something, people look for it without you having to chase them.

If you noticed, there’s one common word that was used in all of those points… the word is UNSOLICITED. If you are unsure of what that means exactly, it basically means ‘not asked for’ so if you are sending anything unsolicited, that means  you are sending  it blindly to someone that  you do not even know, hoping  that  you’ll get a response. WRONG!

Promo Tactic: Paying to perform at a local showcase: 

Why It  Doesn’t work: Way too often a ‘promoter’  will come along and throw a ‘HOTTEST  IN YOUR CITY’  showcase or something along those lines. They decided to  throw this event because they know they can get 10 clueless artists to pay $100-$250 just to get on stage (because they don’t know any better). Once they accomplish this, they now have a packed room full of other artists and their ‘entourages’  that are only there to support  who they came for. So the artist ends up performing  in a room full of people who are generally not interested in supporting anyone except for who they came with. How does that benefit an artist? IT DOESNT. It just puts money in the promoters pocket. Money that you could have put towards something more beneficial, like promotion for your album or getting your tracks mastered. Sometimes the ‘promoter’ will even try to  ‘woo’  you by telling you that  ‘so  and so from big named records’  will be in attendance to check out your performance.  Damn gets them every time! But artists that learn the  biz, understand how these scams work, and they understand that no 1 person is going to come along and magically ‘put you on’, therefore it doesn’t matter if the label rep is half-assed watching your performance, they can’t do much for you anyway! Honestly,  you could of gotten more out of an open mic than you did out of that showcase. But it’s  ok, now that you made that mistake,  you know not to do it again.

Promo Tactic: Paying to get a slot on an unknown  DJ’s mixtape:

Why It  Doesn’t work: Let me say this, before you pay for any sort of promotion,  you must do your own research. There are many unknown radio stations, DJ’s, Promoters,  etc that will ask you to pay for a mixtape slot, or a radio interview, or a placement on their website, etc however that does not mean that you will receive any exposure from it. You need to research, find out how many viewers they really get, check out their website, are people really tuning in? Does that DJ get  any exposure himself? If not, how do

About The Author samuelbiks

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