• This is cool!
    Thanks for the effort of providing the top 10 highlights in "Branding Yourself as a Musicians".

  • Linda Vee Sado

    Number one has worked well.
    I use the same logo on 98% of every music site I set us up on.
    Whenever one of us wears a button or a shirt with the logo and we are out someone almost always says "Oh I have heard of that band"
    Since we rarely do shows due to the Pay 2 Play climate it's pretty amazing.
    Someone else who was in a club with our button on said a person said the same thing to them just last week.

    We also got 9X12 logo magnets and put them on our truck beds
    So pick a logo and stick with it.
    Can you imagine trying to find a can of say Campbell's soup in the store or even remember the brand if they constantly changed the product label?

    • Campbell's Soup. A good logo if you're Andy Warhol. Sounds like you guys have figured out a good way to brand yourself despite playing concerts infrequently.

      • chris

        PAY to PLAY? WTF!!!! congratulation you are part of "kill the industry". same as acts playing for free so that they can play… if you like your music than you should realise the value of it. and if it`s only free drinks for you!! this is the same shit as students working for free .. so that they get references. fuck it!

  • Fab Four fashion may've evolved throughout the 60's, but they were always conscious of keeping it consistent amongst the band for each period/release/year.

  • Fab Four fashion may’ve evolved throughout the 60’s, but they were always conscious of keeping it consistent amongst the band for each period/release/year.

  • Hahaha. (Spotify comment was funny).

  • A novel concept!

  • Good suggestion. Thanks!

  • Thanks for the tips, Chris. Good stuff!

  • Good tips. Though branding your van might just be an extra invite for thieves. Not that they wait for invitations.

  • Thanks for sharing!

  • Phone Radio..Email Radio get your music out there……they will play it if it's good….this will be our 4th cd…we released it 2 weeks ago 130 station already playing cuts…and some sale here at Cd Baby….if it's good people will find you…but they have to like what they hear.Cheers http://www.cdbaby.com/cd/thebluevoodoo

  • Read the post and comments. Mostly good stuff. Perhaps with the exception of one comment – "How about: practice really hard and play good music" – nothing said about starting with a good product to brand. Even a Harvard MBA can't help you if your attempting to brand crap. Great artists define their music, and let their music define them.

    Past that – most bands think that gigging is about folks listening to your music. If they wanted to listen to music they'd listen to your CD or a million others for that matter. No, if folks get up off the couch and pay money at a venue they expect more than mere music, they expect an event. Constistently package both your music and stage presentation in a way your prospective fans can identify with – and that serves their needs. Present a killer show that creates memories they will want to repeat. Why? Because folks hear what they see! And they respond to the energy and personality conveyed on stage. Work on your music and stage craft first and last. The other ideas presented here will then certainly help! Remember the focus of all marketing and branding efforts should be, "Why would prospective fans want to support me and my music? What's in it for them?" Love your audience and they will love you back.

  • Nathan

    I think Linda was saying the Pay To Play climate is the reason that she DOESN'T play out more often, not that she's embracing it as the way things ought to be.

  • And never brand your van like this: http://en.terra.com/latin-in-america/news/band_ar

  • Best advice I've seen all week.

  • Michael Handy

    A lot of great points here. Yes you have to be good at what you do and I believe authenticity/sincerity go a long way also but your personal style makes an impression too. One of the comments made was about the public getting off the couch and going out to see your show/event. Make them remember you for more than just your music or sound. I walked into an old theater building once (holds 1200 seats) as a spectator to see a music/variety show. One of the ladies taking tickets in the foyer saw me and started singing a song that I had performed a year earlier in this same venue and then pointed at the floor to my feet. "I remember those boots" she said to me. We both had a good laugh, I used to wear the same grey leather boots whenever I performed somewhere and people always remembered/commented when they saw me somwhere. Work on your style and keep it simple.

  • Connor

    Greco (and others) maybe if you got involved enough into ANY indie music scene you would realize that the reason there are no groundbreaking beyond-famous *bands* (as opposed to pop artists like Katy Perry, etc etc) is due to the fact that the amount of *bands* has multiplied thousand-fold since your proposed "golden age" artists.

    There is a MARKET for "grindcore" now. Don't know what that is? It's the most abrasive, unlistenable, disgusting form of death metal (which i'm sure you all already find abrasive, unlistenable, and disgusting) This goes the same for almost any niche of the music industry you could IMAGINE, including hybrids of many different subgenres. There are MARKETS for EVERYTHING.

    In every indie market right now, there are bands that are at the TOP of said indie market, and then there are bands who constitute the "pile" they sit on.

    Did you know surf rock is making a large comeback? Look up "Wavves" (two v's) and you'll see that they have an extremely huge following. Not compared to your beloved U2 and Bon Jovi and other artists that just happen to make headline news (or wherever you lazily gather news about the music industry's "tip of the iceberg") but compared to probably a thousand other indie surf rock bands.

    Same goes for every other micro-market out there. If you're not catching up with these modern specific markets, and expecting grindcore, death metal, synth-rock, acoustic, jazz, progressive polka rock, math rock, surf rock, hybrid rock, etc groups to steal Bon Jovi's spotlight, then you're being extremely lazy and extremely narrow with your scope on the reality of the ultramodern state of the music industry and all the culture behind it. If you've "walked the walk" then you must have been walking on a treadmill.

  • Pistofficerpunk

    1. Focus on your local scene. If you can't master your local area what makes you think other areas have it for you. Then you can show swap with other bands from other towns who have done the same with their home place. 2.Write music people like .How do you know it's good ? People tell you. Don't ask them.

  • Spivgun show

    has anyone tried to sale vinyal records?, its a nice idea but how much money will u loose
    i sell everything but no vinyal, sounds like a loosing product, but classic
    im now trying SPIVGUN SHOW artifiicial trees not selling
    but im branding old vacumes and pianting them and logoing + graphics hot vacume and thier selling way better than i thought
    no one givesa shit how good your cd is, consumers age 13 to 35 don't pay for music
    you emiditly get difenceve

  • Rodrockman

    You left out the biggest mistake MOST bands make when branding. Here is a typical scenario.
    " Hey dude, who are those guys playing?……. " I dunno."
    That's right. many, MANY bands don't even have their band name or logo visible on stage.

    • Excellent point. And announce your name from stage if you're relatively unknown.

  • Hopefully the most important part. But I think people usually need some other branding cues to lead them towards the music.

  • Good thoughts for sure. Thanks.

  • Autotune is just another tool, like compression, ADT, synthesizers, reverb, etc. It can be used for good or evil. I think sometimes it is used as an effect and has some great emotional impact. (Though these instances are, perhaps, rare.)

  • Baby steps.

  • Aesthetic is hug. Be as consistent as you can be with your look. Make sure your sound, look, website, photography, all have that consistent "look". When your're branding yourself, consistency is aesthetics is key. We have a blog called THE PROCESS OF BRANDING YOURSELF. It talks about staying familiar in every area of your band (or singer-songwrite) life.

  • Anonymous

    Thank you, May. I find lots of blogs and comments with generic "advice" such as here, where we are supposedly talking about Branding – a facet of Marketing – and many are instead talking about what effects to use in a mix and other off-subject remarks. At Mid-Tenn, we study diligently and hope to enlighten people with the information we find. Thanks for the visit and kind words, I hope we can help you (and many others) in some way.

  • Anonymous

    Ever hear of NASCAR? It's a big money maker because of branding. "Busch" series…
    Eddie Van Halen (yeah, he's old) He has a contract to play a specific brand of guitar…
    Santana was once sued for breech of a similar contract…
    I don't suppose you ever noticed how many selections of beer brands there are at the large arena in your area…
    If, as a start up, you allow your local print shop to put their logo on the sleeve of your band's shirt, it is like an endorsement from that shop saying, "Hey, these cats are really good"
    Your comment says to me that you would not want to be written about in "Rolling Stone" or here, on the CD Baby site…
    I don't mean to come off brusk, but just to give you something to think about. I believe that we should foster good relations throughout the industry.
    Bach, Beethoven, Tchaikovsky, Sinatra, and all the greats were funded by benefactors (sponsors) …

    • Trash Alt8

      No one on the face of this earth believes that a Coca-cola logo on the shirt of an unknown talent constitutes an endorsement (of corporate entity to talent). "NASCAR" is not going to lend endorsement to anyone who hasn't proven their worth, and the same was true for Beethoven, Bach, Mozart and yes Sinatra. The sponsors appeared after these artists made their talent known. How do I know this? Because I have worked for corporate lawyers who have drawn up these such endorsement contracts. So this branding stuff is really just pipe dreaming if an artist believes there is some sort of short-cut to success that bypasses the public eye. Win over the audience first, then engage your marketing strategies. If you are lucky and have sales success, a sponsor may appear.

  • The vanishers

    Thanks Mark Bragg. We have had the roller girls to many of our shows handing things out and they even came on stage for this song in a couple bars. They are great girls!

  • Ha. Dudes in T-Shirts.

  • One of my teachers in school helped discover KISS and The Knack. He told a story about his own mentor, who had a guy he was trying to market. He did a show in a club in Hollywood, invited all his friends, and waited the next day after the show. No one called. So he started calling all of them instead. They all said nearly the same thing: 'This guy can't sing in tune!…what are you doing??' And after–I guess–the fourth or fifth call, a lightbulb went off and he knew just how to market the artist.

    The artist was Billy Idol.


  • Pickett

    Well, it might have been delved into a bit more deeply, but I do see a lot of l-a-m-e band photos (four guys against a brick wall…again?…really?) and videos that just seem really ego-centric. Video can be a huge marketing tool…but people get in the middle of it and forget that it needs to speak to people watching it all over the globe…not just 14 people who get all your inside jokes or like the overuse of strobe lights.

    I think they're good points…

  • Chaz

    Where is this reasonably priced ale ? !!

  • Chaz

    Don't kid ya self Snow cat , Autotune has been available to the likes of Frank since '55. It has only just filtered down to muppets and has been the illusive 'Magic' in most recordings since then.

  • Zerobuwan

    I wish we can do #6. It's a bit pricey.