Disclaimer: All of the following is based off of personal experience. I am by no means a music industry veteran. Hopefully this will at least get you started and put you in the right direction!
So you’ve got a band together and you have some quality songs recorded, now what? Here are some vital steps that you should take as a new band trying to gain fans and exposure.
Most bands/musicians starting out don’t have the luxury of only making music and playing shows. You also have to be a graphic designer, a business professional, and a marketing wiz.
First, get some bitchin’ photos. On top of having an amazing record, you have to have look good. You want to look professional. Even if you’re young and still living with your folks, you can still make it look like your music is your career. Invest in getting work done by a graphic designer. This could be anything from promotional advertisements to album artwork to merch designs. If you don’t have the cash to invest a designer, learn how to do it yourself. Google and YouTube are your best friends here. Get a copy of Adobe Photoshop for all of your photo/image work and a copy of Adobe Illustrator for all of your typography. This will benefit you SO much. I can’t stress that enough. You don’t want your promo ads to look like your little sister made it in Microsoft Paint.
Once you have your album art ready, promos, and ads made up, sit down and write up a schedule for the next one-two months. Have this schedule involve everything you’ll be releasing and when. Be active at least once a week. When you have that made up, post all of your promo ads to your social websites (i.e., Facebook Cover Photo, Official Website, Twitter Header, etc.). If this is your first release, I would suggest posting your promotional material about 2 weeks before you release your first single so you can get at least a little buzz going. When you release your first single, if at all possible, I would highly encourage you to put together a professional music video. Odds are that more people will listen to your music if you have a video to go along with it. You can do all of this with a DSLR. Find a friend with one and film. Throw a party and film you guys playing a show. The possibilities are endless and simple ideas can go a long way. If this is your first single, releasing the video and the single at the same time is fine. The most important thing here is just to get your music out to the public.
Leading up to the release of your single, send a link to music blogs and sites that can feature your single/video when it’s released. When writing your emails, be professional! Layout, grammar, and punctuation don’t go out the window just because you’re in a band. After your single/video is out, wait another 2-4 weeks and release your album. During that month before your album release date, email music blogs and websites that could possibly review your album and/or feature your single in the meantime. Try to set up as many features as possible for when your record drops. Attaining good press is very important.
Once your record is out, look at your schedule and make sure you have something planned each week for a month or so out. Constantly be thinking of what you can release to the public. This could be releasing live videos every Monday, acoustic versions of some of your songs, a recent interview/feature, etc. We live in an ADD society and people will move onto something else if you’re not constantly putting out something new or interesting. It’s important to have your name in front of people on a regular basis. However, do not overkill. If you post way too many times a day or a week, some people may find it annoying and remove you from their Facebook newsfeed or stop following you on Twitter, etc. Not good.
That’s it! If you follow these steps, I think you’ll find your self being very productive and happy with the progress you make. Even if it’s little by little, it’s still progression, and that’s what’s important!
Don’t forget to check out Altadore’s music, and purchase a CD of ‘Golden Hills’ here!