The problem of how to promote your music is one of the main challenges facing
any band or musician who wants to be a success. Even when your act or material
is established, building your fan base and selling your CDs or mp3s is all
about exposing people to your music. Basically, if you dont know how to
promote your music, how will you get people to buy what you write or play?
1. Learn how to get band bookings from venues
Clearly you’re never going to know how to promote your music at gigs if you
can’t get your band booking. So, learning how to do this is a key requirement.
Getting gigs boils down to:
a) Working out what’s different
about your band
b) Drawing up a long list of
c) Agreeing between band members
how many band bookings you want to play every week or month
d) Creating a demo
e) Hitting the phones to canvas
your long list of venues
Oh, and of course rehearsing.
booking tips here
2. Get people to come to your gigs.
So, once you’ve mastered the art of how to promote your music to venues, you
need to get people in through the door to watch you play on gig night.
You should do this both on and offline. Online, think your Facebook, Twitter
and Youtube accounts to advertise your gigs. Also, your own website should be
collecting email addresses so you can email newsletters with details of the
event. Offline Press releases, flyers and verbally telling everyone you know
about your forthcoming gigs.
3. Play Great Shows
Many bands and musicians learn how to get band bookings and even then to
fill venues on gig night. You can set yourself apart from other acts when you
know how to promote your music by putting on great shows every time you
play. The key points are:
-Creating the confidence to perform
-Knowing your material inside out (so
you can concentrate on the “show”
-Planning the show in advance
-Interacting with your crowd
More about playing great shows here
Once you can get band bookings, get people to your gigs and put on a great
show, heres how you can make the most of every gig to promote your music.
1. Use audience reactions to help fine-tune your song arrangements and to
test new material
2. Sell your music (CD’s) and merchandise at the gigs
3. Publicise your website and social media at the gigs (think flyers and
4. Book repeat gigs at the same venue on gig night itself and publicise this
to the crowd
These will all help build your fan-base over time – a key ingredient in
knowing how to promote your music.
When youve mastered all the above it may be time to:
5. Invite industry contacts to your shows
A&R people if getting signed is your goal, band management or just
booking agents for bands if you want someone to handle that side for you.
No matter what your ultimate musical aim is, playing band bookings will do
more than help create a buzz about your band and music. When you know how
to promote your music this way it drives your motivation and builds
momentum for your musical career. And, it will put some extra cash in your
pocket at the same time.