Hi, my name is Tony van Veen, CEO of Disc Makers.
Do you remember back in the day when David Letterman would do his top 10 lists? Yes, I know,
I'm an old guy. And if you're a young pup and you don't remember David Letterman, just google 'David
Letterman top 10 listing' and you'll find plenty of pretty funny examples. Well, today I'm going to
start this year off with a top 10 list of my own. Except, unfortunately, it won't be funny because
I will be discussing the top 10 marketing mistakes i see independent artists make. You see, after
talent, which you need, and a willingness to work hard, which are essential, the ability to do
effective marketing is probably the single biggest driver of music success.
I've seen a ton of albums
get released during my 30 plus years at Disc Makers. And of the hundreds of thousands of albums
released by independent artists over the decades, only about one in seven is reordered. That is a
really low success rate of about 15%. So my goal is not just to get that success rate up
overall, but more specifically to help you be a more successful artist. Now, I. like to keep
these videos short and easy to digest and one list of 10 items would just take too long. So today in
my countdown, I'm going to be discussing mistakes 10 through 6. And in my next video, I will tackle
the top 5 mistakes. So without further ado, here is the first half of my list of top 10
marketing mistakes independent artists make. Mistake number 10: Not making a low
or a no budget music video. Music was always not just an audio format, but highly
visual as well. I mean think of any famous artist and you will probably even think about their looks
simultaneously with or even before their sound. And video is essential to building your
brand as an artist.
Youtube and TikTok are two of the world's biggest music discovery
platforms and they're both all about video. Nowadays, video does not need to be expensive.
And you're an artist, you're creative, you can pay to get a video made because it's really
really affordable nowadays. And if you really have no budget, well every artist knows a creative
kid going to art school or somebody who's an aspiring videographer who would love to
make a cool music video even if it's just for their own portfolio. Number nine: social
and email spamming. We've all been there we follow a new artist or maybe even a company on
their socials, on their email list, and all of a sudden we start getting inundated with messages to
buy the product, buy the product, buy the product over and over again.
And that, frankly, is a great
way to get fans to unsubscribe or unfollow you. Remember, you want your fans to engage with
the content that you create. You want it to be interesting to your readers. Instead of banging
them over the head just with messages meant to sell them something, you got to think of yourself
as a storyteller. You tell interesting authentic stories and illustrate them on your socials,
in particular, with interesting or beautiful or interesting photo and video content. Tip number
eight, or mistake number eight: not giving fans something special to get excited about. Nowadays
if you want to make a living from your music, you can't rely on streaming.
You have to sell
something. However, in this streaming era, fans don't have to buy anything in order to
listen to your music. So, you have to go for a mindset change. Fans don't have to buy your new
album like in the old days. You have to get them to want to buy. And you do that by making special
content and special packages and special product. You know, deluxe packaging, a super cool vinyl
album, an autographed CD, a limited run pressing, a physical only release, that you don't put on
the streaming sites.
You want to make your music special so that fans want to give you their money
and feel good about it. Mistake number seven: dropping an album out of the blue. Today, your
music release strategy is part of your marketing strategy. If you drop an album cold just like that
without dropping two or maybe three singles first, you are increasing the chances that your album
will fail. Very simple. Every album needs to be set up with a few digital singles to get your
fans excited. Start six or eight weeks before your album release with single number one.
can hype the single on socials and in email. And then three four weeks later, hit single
number two and more promotion. It's a way to get fans excited. Singles are so cheap, for 10 bucks
you can be on every streaming site. And singles offer some of the biggest promotional bang for the
buck because they are so cheap. And if you do the singles, then your fans will be primed and ready
for both the digital and the physical versions of your album when you are ready to release. Mistake
number six: ignoring email as a marketing channel. Yes, we live in a social media world, but every
artist I know who has an active email list tells me that email is their top channel for actually
driving sales transactions of their physical media, of their merch, and of their concert
tickets. People still don't really go to social media to pull out their wallet although that is
starting to change a little bit. Artists love to brag about their huge social followings, but I
have a saying 'social for show, email for dough,' and it's worth noting in this age of social media,
email is one of very few assets that you truly own.
That you control. And you can take that list
with you wherever you go if you switch providers. All right. In the interest of time, that's it for
today's video. Next time, I will be discussing the top five marketing mistakes artists make
i hope you will join me then. See you..