Music Business and Music Management Advice: Music Marketing Check List

by Matt @ Kurb on August 3, 2009

Hi it’s Matt from Kurb. I’m always looking for exciting and business savvy artists who can benefit from my experience of over 5 years promoting musicians online. Kurb provides the skills, strategy and personnel to carry out a music marketing and artist mangement service that is comprehensive, personalized and affordable.

Email:  Call: +64 27 684 8250

includes: video promotion on youtbe // web + graphic design //online advertising ppc management (and $100 free adwords credit) // blog promotion // Social Media Marketing // Professional Fan Management
It’s $500 up front for the first 3 months and if you’re not impressed with the results of our service then you have no further obligations.

Email me, Matt, to discuss the guarantees we offer under this deal – 10,000 youtube views – youtube video production and $100 worth of online advertising is also available as part of our 3 month packages.

Alright so even though I claim in my videos that this blog is not for beginners, really that’s just a relative term in regards to your understanding of how the new music business works.

You could have been in the music business for years and be wondering why no one wants to buy your $20 CD’s any more. You could be some kid that realises fame comes a long time before fortune these days.

Wherever you’re coming from, if you’ve reached the conclusion that there’s no way you’ll have a music career unless you have the support that was once afforded by a label then you’re on the right track because you just can’t do it on your own. A label can take all your rights and still may not understand how to conduct serious online music business in the new media environment.

You may have no money now and be thinking about doing it all yourself but if your plan is to be successful and some stage, then you’re going to need support either form someone like us who you’ll pay or someone who fits into a traditional music managers role taking a percentage but who also understands enough about online business to be a valuable asset to yours.

So this not about what we do or what we can do for you, but what I would expect from anyone who claims to be able to offer music management services, which is important because with less money in music then ever it means quality managers are heading for greener pastures and sharks who talk a good game but can’t deliver are ready to sell you on big ideas.

You need to be sure that the online strategies your management has for success are solid.

So what should you be expecting from someone who is there to support you in the music business?

Let’s go over your check list:

1) Songs, pictures, videos, content – If you’ve got no content then what are we to promote and what are we supposed to use to get people interested. It’s not just a matter of songs, because this isn’t just radio. If you think you’ll make it with talent alone, you’re in the wrong century. Artists will live and die by their brand. Music backed up by inauthentic and non existant brands will perish.

I don’t care what your manager claims – if you don’t have strong and diverse media and content to promote then not many managers could help you until you develop your online marketing. At this point you do need a manager to assist with recording, photos, copywriting and vblogs.

2) An internet platform – How are you going to interface with your fans online? Unless you have your own website it’s going to be a continued negotiation – instead of a label you’ll be beholden to myspace or whatever outfit provides the technology for you to have internet frontage. What this means is issues when you move to leverage your popularity for revenue, then whether it’s myspace or whatever fancy deal you’ve made with someone to provide you with a web presence, they will become the middle man.

If your professional music business support or marketing service isn’t providing you with a website, then you don’t really have an online business and your dependent on offline revenue or whatever scraps your host site will allow you to have.

There’s not much room for innovation or growth there.

3) Fan management – So if you actually start getting fans how are you going to manage the interactions? Are you just going to hope they find out about stuff? Do you think they’ll be so blown away after coming to your website they will ever come back again? How are you going to organise your fans so that when you do hit critical mass (your fanbase has grown to a size that it actually makes a difference) you can use them to give you leverage in other ways?

If your management team has no system for professional email management, newsletters, or some platform by which it’s easy for fans to get the information, as frictionless as possible, then you’re not going to be able to organise your fans for any significant undertakings. Such as making money

4) Digital distribution – this one’s so obvious that even I don’t really offer it as part of my service any more. If you’re music marketing or music business manager or mentor doesn’t understand the different options for getting your songs to market through itunes etc. – between Tunecore, CD Baby or whatever other credible options there are, such as widget based sales, then you might have to seriously question your music manager grasp on modern music business and music marketing.

5) Online promotion – So once you have all this in place, all your wonderfully branded content, your very own website with great persuasive sales and presentation, you’ve got your email sign up and management all in place, you’ve got your songs for sale . . .

A music manager will get their hustle on for the artist to get them exposure and opportunities – this is one thing we don’t provide, doing the hustle and the talking for you but believe me if you’re actually serious you’re going to need everything I’ve described in terms of online music promotion, and some hustle, and some more!

And that’s all great but if your music manager or music marketing service doesn’t understand what’s going to bring people to your page – if they don’t have quite advanced knowledge of either search engines, social media, online advertising or some kind of adept content management for distributing backlinks, videos or other promotion tools (I’m hesitant to include “email blasts” – you gotta remember not everyone wants to be “blasted” – get blasted enough and it’ll be your name associated with spam blasts rather than anything else)

6) Business management – This is the stuff that most music managers think they’ll be handling except they’ve shown up a year or two early for the job. They won’t be brokering any deals or setting your career ablaze if no ones done the leg work of collecting the kindling. The important part to note is that when you do actually start taking off this is where you need to be really conscious of your business needs.

You’re becoming successful, but rather than consolidate it’s likely you’ll need to expand your support network, increase the amount of people you have managing your affairs, you’ll need separate people to focus on your online business, your performing work, your merchandising opportunities, your publishing and licensing,

So this is the thing. If you’re paying someone to carry out music marketing, management and promotion services for your music enterprise then you need to be sure they’ve got all your bases covered.

The industry has changed rapidly, and new opportunities to engage and succeed are constantly arising, you need to music business support from someone who has the experience sure, but is flexible and intuitive in regards to how online business runs because a greater part of the revenue and exposure to be gained in music is online so a manager or professional music management team who can’t help you with this or must continually rely on running up the budget with expensive consultants, designers etc is going to become increasingly irrelevant, unsuccessful and even burdensome.

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