Digital Summer’s “Indie Band 101 Guidebook”

February 18, 2013{ 2 Comments }


How to succeed as an independent band

RockRevolt Magazine just ran a profile piece on Digital Summer — an indie band with an impressive list of accomplishments in 2012, including charting on a number of radio lists and sales reports, raising over $50k through Kickstarter, and getting half a million views for their latest video.

The part I found most interesting was the breakdown of how Digital Summer achieved all this without the help of a label. This section of the article is called “The Indie Band 101 Guidebook” — because any independent artist, regardless of genre, can learn something from Digital Summer’s successes.

A music marketing case-study

Here’s what editor Val King has to say about Digital Summer’s independent music marketing efforts:

DS Website is slick, up-to-date, professional and easy to navigate, connect socially, contacts for press/bookings and the most important thing – finding their music with ease!  Band websites should not look like video games.

DS Facebook Page has almost 50,000 “likes” made up of real fans.  What’s a “real fan” you ask?  The kind that believes in you to the tune of $51k, come to your shows, and is always there to catch you when you decide to leap like a puma off of the stage.  Digital Summer talks to their fans by consistently posting (that means every day) where they are playing that evening and a big thank you along with a collage of photos from the previous night’s show.  Pain in the ass?  I’m sure it can be, but the band does it out of respect and with a lot of care – you can just tell.   Click here to see one

* DS has over 86,000 Twitter followers and they are very active with the tweets.

* DS YouTube Channel has 5,000+ subscribers/2,300,000+ video views/76 uploaded videos.   They have webisodes and tour update videos which allow their fans to be a part of their journey, successes and get to see what life on the road with a hard-rolling band is really like.

* DS has a well-written bio and EPK (Electronic Press Kit) and answers all emails/call/inquiries promptly.  This is a fast-paced environment.  This is Digital Summer’s business and business is good.

* The links/icons to purchase Breaking Point are easy to find no matter what page/site you are on.  It’s for sale everywhere, but just for fun – here’s a direct link to buy it on iTunes

* DS is sponsored by or endorse such iconic brands as Pearl Drums, Schecter Guitars, Vic FirthSpector Bass, DeathGrip Clothing Co.,  StickerJunkie.comJägermeister USA and Headbanger (the “official wines of Digital Summer” – it says it right at the top of their Facebook!).  Well played Digital Summer.  Well played.

Check out the full article HERE.

Tell us what you think!

What does it take to succeed as an indie band these days? Let us know in the comments section below.

YouTube Guide

  • Reading this inspirational article now…thank you for the lead!

    I think presence is needed to succeed as an indie band nowadays. The numbers have to be real and the demand also has to be real.

    Indie bands and artists these days need to promote their brand more than ever. This article is inspirational and focuses on the DIY attitude that has propelled Digital Summer to where they are now.

    Great article!


  • Bridge City Badge Co

    One thing about marketing your band – MAKE SMALL MERCH TOO. Buttons, beer koozies, and even bottle openers (especially if you play bar shows). Shows are expensive sometimes, and while your fans want to support you, but they may not be able to afford a t-shirt.