A Music Marketing Guy Builds an Artist Website: Branding

by Matt @ Kurb on August 31, 2009

Need seriously professional online music business support?

My name is Matt Turner and my company Kurb specializes in online music business – marketing, management, strategy and business models for artists and organisations.

We do websites, design, online advertising, video promotion and production, email management, brand strategy, content marketing, administration . . . everything basically.

We tailor online solutions that are comprehensive and affordable. I run a team of staff in the Philippines, India, Bangladesh and here in New Zealand which offers insurmountable value in online music marketing to musicians in the US or Europe.

Our fees start at US$200 p/month which gets you 4 hours from me building your online marketing and branding strategy and 10 hours from our support team in design, social media, video, and content.

You simply won’t get this standard of service and expertise at this price elsewhere.

Contact me, Matt: kurbpromo@gmail.com

So yes from the last post running into this one I told you how my music business is going real good, which was more of a broader look at what I’m doing, and how that might provide some illumination on how I built a music busines model.

but right now I am also getting back into my music because even though I accept that marketing other peoples music is kinda what I grew up to do, doesn’t mean I can’t market my own music too, now I’m learning to enjoy having some time to myself again!

I started off with a journal which is a written space for me to bash out ideas, in itself it’s really nothing, I don’t write with key words in mind like I do on this “music marketing services” blog. (heh)

It’s more how I’ve described social media such as twitter and aspects of blogging – you can develop your brand into something very strong by chipping away at it – it’s almost like a sandbox for brand design.

It is essential to have not just a solid, not just robust, not just a strong, but a POWERFUL artist brand if you’re really going to motivate fans to connect with what you’re trying to do.

A strong part of the music brand I’m building with my own artist brand is that I’m not a struggling musician, I’m a successful businessman and marketing man who has his own story.

Don’t forget I’m actually working with more high end clients now and the higher and further you get, the more having this perfectly clear brand becomes the foundation of how your fans relate to you.

The bigger the client the more the brand has to speak. Simply having “good songs” is not going to take you that far without branding.

So brands, stories, imagery are essential, not only for engaging fans, but also as platforms to launch profitable propositions.

I’m redesigning my whole website first as the most basic step, but even this is forcing me to think deeper about how my websites helps fans to get what they want.

To me giving away free stuff and creating exceptional value is more important than anything else. You may have other ideas but I believe to stand out you’ve got to go to extremes, remember a huge part of my brand is that I am NOT a rock star, I have a good day job (ie this one) that is more essentially who I am.

And what’s more I have a very cynical view of musicians. Remember I talk to musicians every day and I experience their short sighted and nieve views of how their careers are due to unfold.

So whereas with my clients I would attempt to negotiate an email address in exchange for free music, I just give it all away.That’s my brand, that I don’t care, if you want to sign up for my email list, fine, but really it’s this psychology – I’m trying to feed the fan so much content they can’t move.

Once you’ve drawn them far enough into your web

Unfortunately most artists don’t have a web, they’ve just a CD and maybe a video.

You see I’m trying to stand out by doing something different.

I’ve been making beats for 9 years, I got 100 songs a t least, been involved in half a dozen different music outfits, been putting on parties for over 6 years, and the sum of that is that I know a thing or two.

So the other aspect of the website is strong characterization. which is also social proof.

Illustrating to fans that you are who you claim to be especially these days when so much is fake and a facade, or at the very least that you represent something authentic

Your website is there to make these informing statements to your audience that is going to impress upon them the significance of the work you’re doing.

My first job the moment they arrive on my site – just like my video – is that I’m actually for real in this. If you’re a rapper that often means y’know, cars, jewellery, women etc., if you’re Metal band lots of black stuff, A folky artist wants a picture of some fields or mountains, A DJ/Producer you want to have your decks or your synths in there.

These ARE Cliches, but they are ALSO cues to your audience representing what you’re about.

To me, even though I’m a dance music and beat producer, I want to impart a strong sense of my artistry and individuality. Makes me think of Beck’s brand or Moby’s brand. Some weird dude who makes beats and songs, but their brands represent them as individuals.

But I do embrace a lot of funk and soul in my beats. That’s why I’m tapping the Mad Men thing, because that’s kind of my brand to be honest. DJ Don Draper. Haha.

The fact is I’m a marketing guy, that’s the essence of my day-to-day life, I’m not pretending to be a rock star.

So although it probably seems I’m being very self indulgent here on my music business blog I’m actually illustrating the way you as artist must build your brand into something robust.

I’ll talk about this more next time as I continue to discuss what I’m doing to make my own artist website really effective.

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