Hell, I’ll bet the majority of folks who’ve purchased or streamed my music did so because they saw me perform, heard one of my songs on some podcast or online radio station like Pandora, had a friend recommend me to them, or checked out my website after reading one of my blog posts. Conversely, I’ll bet very few people purchased or streamed my music after reading a review of one of my albums.
So maybe next time you launch an album or single into the world, you should forget about Filter, or Pitchfork, or The Source, or DownBeat (well, maybe don’t forget about them; but focus your PR energy elsewhere) — and start thinking about hitting up the places where your potential fans actually hang out (online, or otherwise).
For instance, my buddy Brad is putting the finishing touches on a hip-hop-influenced album that features the sampled voices of 80’s Pro Wrestling stars. He’s already getting a decent amount of attention from popular wrestling podcasts and websites, and the album isn’t even out yet!
When I contributed a song to a compilation of murder ballads based on true life (and death) stories, the album was marketed to historical societies, to participants of walking-tours through Portland’s oldest cemetery, to Halloween event planners and attendees, and other enthusiasts of the macabre.
Got a song about sailing? Look for opportunities at yacht clubs, in nautical magazines, or online discussion forums (there are forums for almost every model of boat). Written a song about a tired race horse? How about pitching your music to an equestrian magazine? Mention a certain brand of whiskey in your latest country shuffle? Go straight to the distillery and see if they’ll give your song away for free on their website for 30 days.
You get the point. Your music contains more potential connection points than simply being part of a larger genre. So stop fretting so much about getting great coverage from the traditional music media, and start worrying instead about getting your music in front of the exact people who will take the greatest interest.
Have you tried this approach with your music PR? How did it go? Let us know in the comments below.
[hana-code-insert name='marketing-your-music' /]
[Empty chairs image from Shutterstock.]