Before I Was Famous: Looking Back on 2016
I think that everybody can agree that 2016 was an eventful year for most of us - in music, and in life. It was my first full year submersed in the world of publicity, and looking back, I have learned a copious amount of things as both a publicist and a musician. I want to share a few of those with you.
Then: I used to think that all a band needed to do was record an album, put it out there, and it would magically make it onto every “Best Of” list on the internet. You’ll promote it on Facebook and have a release show at your local dive bar. It seemed like the formula for success.
Now: Since I’ve had a chance to get my hands into some publicity work, I’ve realized that I was pretty far from the truth. A band can’t just rely on their social media and friends alone. Each of our campaigns has a 3-4 month build up time before the actual release. This gives us time to pitch to media and start generating interest. Remember, nobody knows who you are, so the more introduction time you give them the better. You can still have a big local release show, but that should be coupled with press and promotion to media. And don’t forget to invite your local music press to the gig!
Then: I used to think that Facebook was king. While it might be a wonderful tool for reaching an audience, the reach only goes so far. A band can’t just say “Hey, listen to this!” and expect the world will drop what they’re doing and click on a link.
Now: Engage with people! I’ve learned that social media is about way more than just posting things people should listen to. You need to engage with them! This might seem like a million dollar word, but try to treat it like a party, or a first date. You don’t want to spend the whole time talking about yourself. Get to know somebody else before you even consider mentioning the new single you just released.
Then: This one is two-fold. I used to think that blogs were super inaccessible and that the only way to get coverage was to be signed to a huge record label.
Now: The good news is that not only is this false, but blogs are more accessible than you think! Yes, it is still true that the larger outlets like Rolling Stone and Stereogum might only pay attention if you have a label backing your name. However, there are a seemingly infinite number of small to mid level blogs that you can reach out to and that want to hear your music. Just make sure you’re doing your research first so that you aren’t wasting your time or theirs with a genre they don’t cover. Keep in mind that those small blogs add up, and someday they could be bigger blogs with more influence. Just remember to show some love when love is shown and give a shoutout and credit to everybody that covers you.
Green Light Go: Make a list of 2017 goals for you and your band!
Sharing is Caring: Think you know somebody that could benefit from these tips? Feel free to share or tweet it. Comments and feedback always appreciated @p_corsi