Hi all. It’s me, Jilli. It’s now time for another episode of life and times of a publicist. I wish I had the time to write every day but duty calls. So, here’s the latest to dish out to all my indie artists. This article might be a bit random but I promise it will touch on some key elements.
iHeart Radio filed for bankruptcy. So did it’s rival, Cumulus. Between the two of them, that’s 1295 FM radio stations. Now what? Spotify is going public in April. What does that mean? Pandora is personalizing playlists just like Spotify. Perfect timing, right? But yet, vinyl records and CD sales have collectively surpassed digital downloads in 2017. Huh?? Sounds like a roller coaster for the music industry, doesn’t it?
So what does this mean for you, the indie artist? Well, it means that you are not guaranteed anything out there. And you really need to do your research on what all that means. Especially if you want to be in this business. I mean, if these music giants are falling apart at the seems, it sometimes diminishes any hope for an artist to get their songs on the radio. But like I’ve mentioned before, focusing on radio should not be your main focus.
The music industry is forever changing. There are plenty of avenues to get your music heard. I believe that many artists just tend to think that getting on the radio is the only thing, when in fact, it isn’t. Try your best to gain an organic following by performing at different places, letting people know when you are performing again, and getting THEIR information, like an email address, so you can put your potential fans on your list. This way, you can always send an email for your future gigs. Some online music platforms allow you to have a fan list on there where people voluntarily submit their email, however, when you’re performing, make sure you have a way to capture this data as well, in person.
I’ve always toted the indie artist scene as an eclectic group of individuals who really support each other. For many, it’s about the music. At least, that is how most of the indies start out. There is love, support, compassion, and plenty of advice and networking going around. There’s lots of local gigs and venues to perform at, and if you look closely enough, some of them will even pay you to be there, if you can bring people to that venue.
Artists, don’t dismiss online radio shows. Many of these online radio stations have a strong following and love to support indie artists. Find some good ones and submit your music. Make sure it’s what they are looking for in terms of style/genre. By the way, if you know some great online radio stations, I would love to help promote them on our site.
Also, don’t forget that merchandise. If you don’t have a little something to give away, make sure you at least have your business cards with verifiable contact information. It looks really unprofessional to have numbers or email addresses crossed off your cards so make sure it’s current.
I believe that will be all for now, artists. The office is busy and we are bustling with busy work. Until next time. – Jilli.
p.s. Check out this great article on FORBES for an Artist Step by Step Guide To Making Money and Impact in Music.