When in doubt, don’t hesitate to follow the moves of successful people in your field. Think about some of your favorite bands and artists, and consider the ways they are currently marketing their music to their fans. Do they have a mailing list? What type of updates do they send on Twitter and Facebook when they are about to release a new CD? What type of products do they give away and what do they sell? Individuals who build professional brands, no matter whether it’s the music industry or a non-creative industry, will tell you that there is no need to reinvent the wheel. There are tons of methods of promoting your music that has been proven to work; you just need to find out which ones work best for you.
Have a Consistent Schedule
The best way to get things done and keep things getting done is to have a consistent schedule that you follow. Creative types usually don’t like the idea of a schedule because it may remind them too much of their 9-5, but the 9-5 schedule does keep people consistent (for the most part) and productive in their careers. You don’t have to put your musical schedule into a 9-5, but having a daily or weekly schedule that delegates your time properly to things like creation, marketing, and performing is a great way to stay on your game.
Be Humble But Hungry
As an Indie artist, you want to shamelessly tell everyone about your music whenever possible. You are your own salesman. Never skip a chance to tell someone about your past, present or future musical endeavors. How could it hurt? As long as you are sharing your music in a tasteful way, you should never feel bad about promoting yourself. But, be sure to promote yourself humbly! Egos and Indie artists don’t mix well. Being an Indie artist is all about building connections and getting people to enjoy your work and your image. Try not to come off as a douche when networking and sharing your music with fans. Confidence can go a long way, but lines can easily get blurred between confident and cocky.
Find Ways to Grow
Once you find a decent groove, it’s easy to get too comfortable and complacent. If your only goal is to get a few local gigs and a few dozen hardcore fans, no problem! But if you really want to expand, don’t get stuck in the same circle, playing at the same 3 venues, selling to your same circle of FB friends, family and supporters. Branch out and get creative! If you’re used to writing the same type of lyrics, challenge yourself to write a song about something you would never dream of. If you’re sick of the same small time gigs, challenge yourself and audition for a new talent show or festival, even if it’s out of town. Maybe you could try a collaboration with another artist outside of your genre. Often, when creative types successfully step outside the box to try something new, they can find a whole new world of ideas and possibilities with their creations.
Professionals in the music industry love to see an Unsigned Music maker that knows their stuff. They are used to being approached by people who only have the surface knowledge, limited experience, and below-average skills in presenting themselves. Show them how you’re different! Let people know your PRO Affiliation, be sure to send that professionally written bio. Don’t be afraid to show off those high-quality photos from your most recent photo shoot or a share a professional review you got from a local music magazine. Be proactive and research a company or individual’s past ventures before introducing yourself, highlighting points of their history that relate to you.