Many independent musicians are known for their anti-corporate stance. It's not surprising then that the concept of "marketing" leaves a sour taste in many independent artists' mouths. The fact is though, there are ways to build your fan base and increase people's interest in and awareness of your music - without selling out. If you are an independent music maker, here are a few ways you can do some marketing without going corporate.
First, if your mindset is completely anti-marketing, you really need to change your tune. Marketing and administration does not have to equal selling out or going corporate. Finding ways to expose your ideas and creations through your songs and music to more people - marketing - shows that you believe in what you are doing.
Just stop and think about it for a moment. Doesn't what you create mean enough to you that you want to share it with other people? If not, why are you even pursuing music at all? Once you stop equating marketing and administration with these negative connotations, you can finally move on and start finding ways to promote your band that are still in-line with your ideals as an independent artist.
For starters, remember that your fans are not only your target market, but also your best promoters. Many independent musicians avoid pursuing marketing and administration because they think it means having to constantly deal with the media, promoters, record labels and other corporate types to help get the word out. If you're not comfortable with that, just skip it and go straight to the people who already are your best advertisers - your fan base. Provide them with ways to spread the word about you and your music. They will do the best job at it - and for free. Think about marketing in terms of your fans spreading their passion about you and the word loses even more of it's negative stereotype, doesn't it?
With that in mind, increasing your marketing simply becomes a matter of increasing your fan base. What could be better than that? Make sure to find out what it is about your music that attracts the fans you already have. Make sure you can describe your style of music quickly and clearly. With these tools it becomes even easier to find others who would also be interested in your music and your message. Reach out to them.
As you can see, independent music marketing doesn't need to be a dirty concept. Once you see it in terms of sharing who you are with even more people who will get pleasure from what you create, you can start using it to your advantage. Best of all you can do this using methods that don't require selling out or forgetting about your roots.
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