Rules for better songwriting and promotion

Are you a struggling songwriting or musician but you’ve always wanted to start promoting yourself as an artist and build a fan base to do this as a career?

On today’s live podcast, I’ll be speaking about songwriting and how we are marketing these creative individuals in today’s music market. It’s all about branding and pushing yourself to be the most skillful creator you can be. 

Here’s some valuable advise that will get you started on the right track.

1) Write a LOT.
Churn songs out, bin them and churn more out. Don’t be a perfectionist. The aim is to improve over time, not to sit down and craft the perfect pop song on your first attempt. By giving yourself the freedom to experiment without pressure you will develop the creative part of your brain instead of the over analytical part. Pop/Rock songwriter, Sting commented once that he finds it harder to write great songs now that he has become more analytical of music.

2) Be fearless with your songs
and don’t be afraid to take critics on it. Don’t try to convince everyone that it’s a great song when you know it’s no done and could be better! Get feedback and allow people to be honest, that way you will start to learn what really works and become a much better song writer. Plus the people who help you will become your biggest fans.

3) Raw talent can take someone 10%
of the way to success, but hard work and determination make up the rest!

The problem with naturally talented people is that they never learn failure and find it harder to accept defeat. People who are average (but with a desire to win) are in many ways better equipped to stay the course and succeed long term. But if your lucky enough to have both talent and determination, you could be the next major songwriter.

A great rule of thumb:
If you release a song and no one is commenting on it and you just can’t get traction or interest around your music, then you need to rethink your process. Check the production quality and ask people who have active fans listening to their music in your genre to help you judge it objectively. You’ll never get better and be successful if you can’t fix what’s wrong. And you can’t fix what’s wrong if you can’t handle the critics. If this is something you can’t handle, then you shouldn’t be in this business. You simply have to have the BEST quality music to be taken seriously.

Listen to todays show on songwriting:
Episode #536: A.V.A Live Radio Behind The Music with Jacqueline Jax

As a songwriter, you need to think about your PERSONAL BRAND and how you can tie in who you are to everything that you write.

There is a lot of confusion around branding and what it really is. So what is branding?

Decades ago branding was defined as a name, slogan, sign, symbol or design, or a combination of these elements that identify products or services of a company.

The brand was identified as the elements that differentiated the goods and or service from the competition. When we thought of a well branded company, we thought of what we enjoy or are emotionally tied to when we thought of their name. That could relate to  product, a message or a lifestyle.

Today BRANDING is a bit more complex in someways but to simplify think of Branding as your story.

With Storytelling being so high on the social media ratings, Branding is directly tied to you as the person or creator and branding is what people are thinking and saying about you when your not in the room.

It’s that perception that a consumer or listener has when they hear or think of your name and latest creation.

As a songwriter, you need to focus on several things to shape out your brand for a lasting career as a songwriter and in order to build community and clients around your brand.

  1. Image: Use one image that represents your personal image clearly and in the best way possible for your over all brand and then each music release. This should not only be a logo but today we prefer to have a face along with that logo. If it’s your album cover, you can identify your brand with a common logo and then create a unique cover to identify that release while still visually tying it to your music brand.
  2. Clearly, deliver your message or theme. Even if you write across multiple genre, focus on the content of each song and how it tells your personal story or a story that you wanted to tell for a reason. Be very descriptive in delivering that message when you launch the song.
  3. Credibility: This is built by investing in your image and getting on credible stations for interviews like A.V.A Live Radio. It’s also established by having your professional branding as the thumbnail across all of your social media pages, build a professional looking website to showcase your skills, and utilize the social media banners with advertisements of your latest song. Then deliver quality consistently.
  4. Emotionally connect with your audience. Don’t just throw your song up. Start telling the story from conception in some way. Then evolve the story as you evolve the songs. Even think about how you can showcase, pieces of the music or part of the chorus as your working.
  5. Motivate buyers: at some point you need to decide how your going to release the song and on which platforms. Will you be using it for exposure and placing it everywhere or putting up for sale only? Or selling the demo to another songwriter? So many options. If your going to release it publically look at these options: Itunes, Spotify, soundcloud, reverbnation, itunes, amazon, google play, janga, and A.V.A Live Radio.
  6. Build brand loyalty: Many songwriters forget this key element of branding and building a fan base. Brand loyalty is most important because you need to allow people to have that emotional connection with your music. That comes from a combination of delivering what they love most from you consistently and allowing your listeners to stay involved during the process in between releases.A Blog on your website and newsletter is the best way to build brand loyalty and develop you fan list because it provides a dependable way for people to stay in touch with you.
  7. Advertising:
    Youtube can be used to vlog about your experience, release lyric video, live streams, gig performance, and music videos to embed into your blog posts regularly. Plus if you optimize your videos you could end up gaining amazing traffic organically from the search qualities of youtube.Other embedding sound players from other social media pages like reverbnation, spotify and soundcloud are all great ways to launch the music on viable social media music sites while still having an embeddable player for your website.

    Also decide where or how you will sell your music. Will you be crowdfunding during the process or pre-selling through itunes, etc. Try to plan in advance and set up a pre-sales date that encourages your fans to help you get charted by buying early. Offer an incentive to promote the pre-sale like bonus tracks or acoustic drafts of the best song that no one will have access to except the pre-sale buyers.

    Try to get around 700+ presales as your goal to help get your track some traction by day 1 on trending charts. This also works with spotify on plays if you work like crazy to promote the release and then have everyone waiting for the launch. With a solid campaign, you should be able to pull about 2,000 plays the first 24 hours if you’ve been really active and consistent.

    Of coarse if your launching music regularly and already doing all of these things regularly you’ll have way more than 2,000 plays of pre-sales upon release in 24 hours.
    That part depends on you and how great you get at engaging with your audience.

    If you need help with any of this, the A.V.A Live Radio team helps each artist that comes on my show with options and analysis of your current brand to identify holes in your structure that you can fix as well as hands on help so you can have a team that knows how to move your brand forward.

    That starts here:

    To apply for A.V.A Live Radio, you can use our expedited signup page:

You can now subscribe to A.V.A Live Radio Music business news and marketing on Google play. I think you’ll really enjoy this version of our show. It included call in Q&A from our audience, lots of music marketing and industry news updates that will help you to make more sense of music marketing in todays confusing online space.  

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More resources you may enjoy:

3 Powerful Facebook posts that make an impact

Learn Twitter’s secret weapon for driving traffic and building your Music Brand



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