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4 Blog Post Ideas to Hold Your Fans' Attention

By Carla Jean Whitley Image via doandroidsdance.com

The musician’s life isn’t always glamorous. But the average fan doesn’t have an understanding of what that life is really like – and they’re often eager to find out. Sharing your story by blogging can help build a lasting fan relationship. None of this has to be complex; a few good sentences or a photo that offers insight into who you are and what you’re doing will keep your fans interested whether or not you’re releasing new material.

If you don’t already have a blog, start by signing up on a free platform such as WordPress, which offers a great deal of customization; Blogger, which is incredibly user-friendly; or Tumblr, which is especially good for pictures. There are plenty of reasons to choose one over another, but the most important part is that you start posting sooner rather than later. Here are four ways to keep your audience engaged through blogging.

1. Live-blog your tour
You know that touring typically means a lot of time in a crowded van, some couch surfing, and catching a glimpse of a town if you’re lucky. Even so, take your listeners behind the scenes to give them a taste of …read more

Via:: Sonic Bids

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Why (not) Bandcamp? [Emily White]

By Guest Post By Emily White of Whitesmith Entertainment & Dreamfuel

Bandcamp is a platform I came across by accident in 2008. A platform I was seeking nonetheless, by asking everyone around me “Why isn’t there a way to sell music directly to fans easily in a way that makes sense?” A colleague had mentioned a platform with the name Band in it. I googled like crazy until I landed on Bandcamp (only to find out later the colleague had been referring to something else altogether). I emailed the contact on the site and instantly receive a response from Bandcamp’s founder, Ethan Diamond. Ethan had built a platform because he too was frustrated with how to compensate the artists he loved directly. Similarly, his musician friends were equally frustrated. Thus, Bandcamp was born.

For those of you that Bandcamp is new to, it is a seamless platform in which artists can sell their music to fans for any price; a price that they set. Meanwhile, users can stream select or all tracks, depending on what the artist stipulates. The result six years later from my fateful introduction to Ethan? Read it for yourself on Bandcamp’s homepage …read more

Via:: Hypebot

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Keep Your Life in Order While on Tour

By Nia R Jones

Touring is essential to a band’s success. In an age where music is easily pirated and consumers have shorter attention spans, going on tour can be one of the best ways to reach your fans and stay relevant. However, most musicians do not have the luxury of having personal assistants keeping their lives afloat while they are playing gigs every night. In most cases the little details of life can fall through the cracks when you are on the road. Cherie Nelson understands this plight, and gives practical ways to help streamline those tasks.

Life does not stop when we go on tour. When you are on the road the little things can be too much of a burden and soon important questions can flood your mind. Have I paid my bills? Have I sent those emails? Did I make sure I connected with my fans this week? All of the little details are important, but it shouldn’t hamper the time you have. In this article, Cherie Nelson gives ways to keep track of the little things while on tour. Check out tips on how to manage life while on tour at MusicThinkTank.com
“Traveling from one city to the next like …read more

Via:: Hypebot

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How to Balance Your Crazy College Course Load With Your Music Career

By welsh.dyl@gmail.com (Dylan Welsh) Image via scarletphoto.blogspot.com

Anyone who’s been through college knows that a full course load can be just as intense as a full-time job. Classes are particularly difficult because the work stays with you afterwards, as well as on weekends and holidays. Oftentimes, it can get very complicated to balance your life outside of school with the workload you are given, not to mention your music. Between the practicing, rehearsing, and gigging, music takes up a ton of time as well, usually occupying evenings and late nights. Though it’s a complicated and tedious balancing act, it is possible to be both an active musician and an excellent student. Here are four ways to maintain both sides of your life.

1. Know your priorities
The first thing you have to decide is where your priorities are: Are you a musician or a student first? This doesn’t mean you can’t do both, but you just have to be realistic about what comes first for you so that you can make some tough calls.
Let’s say you get invited to play a weekend, out-of-town gig. Would you be willing to miss a day of class? What if it was more than one? Would …read more

Via:: Sonic Bids

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How To Make Streaming Royalties Fair(er)

By Guest Post By Sharky Laguana, CEO of Bandago. This article originally appeared on Medium.com

Streaming services, most notably Spotify (by far the largest) use what could be called a parimutuel royalty system: all the money collected goes into a big pool, Spotify takes their 30% off the top, and whatever is left is distributed to artists based on their share of overall plays. Spotify explains how it all works right here. It sounds perfectly fair and reasonable: if an artist wants to make more money all they need to do is get more plays. But there’s a major disconnect in this economic model that has not been discussed widely: Spotify doesn’t make money from plays. They make money froms subscriptions.

So how is that a disconnect?
Let’s say I am a huge fan of death metal. And nothing pumps me up more than listening to my favorite death metal band Butchers Of The Final Frontier. So I sign up for Spotify in order to listen to their track “Mung Party.” I listen to the track once, and then I decide Spotify isn’t for me.
OK, So who got the benefit of the $10 I paid in subscription fees?
$3 goes to Spotify. Sure, that seems fair enough.
Roughly …read more

Via:: Hypebot

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4 simple steps to creating a killer press list

By Guest Blogger [This article was written by Janelle Rogers and it originally appeared on the Sonicbids Blog.]

When I built my first press list, I put every small town paper on there, including journalists who covered genres we would never consider promoting. Since then, I’ve created press lists with 500 media contacts and ones with as few as 50. One thing I’ve learned is that your results with a small, highly targeted, and individualized list are just as great as one that has every media contact under the sun. I’ve never believed in the “throw it at the wall and see if it sticks” approach. It’s an inconsiderate use of time for everyone involved: the journalist, publicist, and band members. Today at Green Light Go Publicity, we ask ourselves these four questions before adding a new outlet to our press list.

1. Does the outlet currently cover bands at the level of the artist we represent?
This is the first question we ask before adding someone to a press list. Bands often want magazines like Rolling Stone on their list, but there aren’t any current coverage opportunities for an emerging band. Huge publications’ focus is on the big-name artists, so to place the outlet on …read more

Via:: CD Baby Blog

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It’s Amazing That The Old Record Industry Existed In The First Place

By Guest Post By Philip Kaplan on Medium.com

The world was abuzz this week with reports that Taylor Swift removed her music from Spotify. She called the service “a grand experiment” and said she wanted no part of it. Music writer Bob Lefsetz said it’s just a PR stunt. 80’s rocker Sebastian Bach (who looks kinda like Taylor Swift) said that fans appreciate music more when they have to pay for it.

Who knows.
But we’ve all been told a million times that the old music industry is dying, record stores are gone, and labels are closing. More specifically, record execs who were around in the the 90’s miss the good ol’ days when albums went platinum. But here’s the thing.
Those who made a killing from the record business of yesteryear, should count their lucky stars that it ever happened in the first place.
The record business as most people know it, was just a short hundred-year blip in the 40,000 year history of the music business. A stopgap to solve a temporary problem that existed between the invention of sound recording (1890’s), and the invention of the internet (1990’s).
Few other art forms lets artists get rich off copies of their art.
How did musicians get …read more

Via:: Hypebot

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You Can Now Pay Important People To Listen To Your Music

By Ari Herstand

It’s always been one of the biggest difficulties for an independent musician: how to get their music heard by ‘important people.’ Influencers. Industry people. Celebrities. Bloggers. Radio DJs. Music supervisors. Promoters. Booking agents. Managers. Labels.

The issue has always been, these important people, let’s call them Influencers, get inundated with unsolicited music on a daily (hourly) basis. There’s no way these Influencers could possibly get to all of the music and the few they pull out of the pile to sample, usually suck. It only reinforces their policy of rejecting all unsolicited music.

But what if there was a financial incentive for these Influencers to listen to the music that came through the door? Enter Fluence.

Fluence is a new service, co-founded by one of the co-founders of Topspin, Shamal Ranasinghe, and William White, CTO of Fluence and former employee of Yahoo! Music and AOL.

Fluence connects artists (they call them “promoters”) with “curators.” Why they chose “curators” and not “influencers” eludes me. Probably to encourage curation of the submitted songs. Or maybe they are energy curators. Or maybe because curator is a fancier word. But moving on.
Promoters can send a song or music video to a Curator as an “audition.” The Curator sets an …read more

Via:: Digital Music News

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What a Successful Indie Artist Actually Makes on Spotify

By Paul Resnikoff

This is the complete, unaltered Spotify royalty statement for independent cellist Zöe Keating. It covers the first nine months of 2014.

Zoe Keating – 9 Months of Spotify (Scroll Down for Totals) – Spotify

The post What a Successful Indie Artist Actually Makes on Spotify appeared first on Digital Music News.

…read more

Via:: Digital Music News

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3 Tips to Better Manage a Subscription-Based Business

By Cherie Nelson

Global sales in the music industry rose 0.3 percent from year-to-year in 2012, the first increase since 1999, according to the International Federation of the Phonographic Industry. Revenues dropped 3.9 percent globally the following year due to Japan, the world’s second-largest music market, experiencing a sharp 16.7 percent decline in sales that year. Steve McClure, writing for the Japan Times, said the country’s failure to embrace digital music subscription services like Spotify and Rdio is the primary culprit for the steep drops in revenues.

The subscription-based business model saved the music industry from imminent demise, and has subsequently attracted the attention of startup entrepreneurs. Granted recurring revenue models for businesses are nothing new. But the consumption of goods in American households has decreased over the past 20 years, while service consumption has risen, according to data compiled by the Economist.

The most successful subscription-based businesses today are utilizing all the latest technology and tools, while still providing good old-fashioned customer service. There are no hard-and-fast rules to ensure a profitable enterprise, but these guidelines can help steer you in the right direction.

Billing and Compliance

Whether you collect monthly or annual dues, managing the collection process can get complicated. Netflix, for instance, offers at …read more

Via:: Music Think Tank