An online base
In case you have been under a rock, and missed it, we are in the digital age. Over 90% of all business will be generated by online searches. People will sooner ask google, before they will ask another person. What this means for you as an artists is that you need somewhere where you can control over to create your platform.
I am not talking about social media, this is more important than social media in my opinion as a digital marketer. Your fans/clients need somewhere where they can find your art, all in one place, contact you, and get more information about you.
Social Media Accounts and a clear brand
It only costs you time to get on social media. This is another important avenue that some artists naively neglect. You need to be visible where your fans are visible. Over 50 million people in Southern Africa alone log onto Twitter and Facebook daily. Just let that sink in. This is a place where some will potentially discover you as an artist for the very first time. But wait… You are not on there!!! Get on there.
In a digital age, your greatest asset is no longer your records, it’s your brand in its entirety. It is not very difficult to define this. What sort of companies can be aligned to you? There are two key factors that go into any branding. The first is your following. Brands usually approach you based on the people that you can reach for them. This is why you will see very expensive brands approaching high spenders to be brand ambassadors.
Mid level brands will use footballers, artists and so on, because their value is in the masses. Based on the numbers I can confidently say that we are in desperate need of a culture shift, we don’t have nearly enough people spending money on music. That’s a far reaching issue.
The second part of your brand is your persona. Brand invest in people whose personas fit well with who they are or say they are. Party, fun brands will align with party, fun people. Serious brands will also align with serious people. This is where what we say on social media needs to have this in mind. One wrong sentence could be the death of potential endorsements.
A simple home recording setup
You do not need this to be your studio. This is a great place to play with ideas, to develop your concepts before you head down to the studio to deliver them in a polished manner. All top international acts have this. Some even have it in tour buses when on the road.
If you look back, most of the legendary artists in any genre would spend a lot of time practising before heading to the studio. Not being prepared enough tended to be very costly. Nowadays, you can simply isolate and delete the errors that you make when recording. What this means is that the cost may no longer be financial but the cost is on the final product undoubtedly.
In every artist’s arsenal should be a creative director. If you have recorded music before, you will be aware that every song that you write and record almost becomes a part of you. Some artists go as far as saying it almost becomes your child.
You love your children no matter what! It is not easy to see the flaws in these children, especially just after producing them. A creative director is someone who is not emotionally vested in this. Someone who loves your work, but loves music as a whole, more than he/she does your work. Someone who has a great ear for music.
Their job is to tell you when your child needs something that you do not realise he/she needs. The creative director identifies flaws and gold in your art and helps you to mould it to be the best that it can be. Begotten Sun is one of the great ones I have come across, Sin City speaks for itself. Few artists can produce such a solid debut album as Synik did, credit to his artistry and that of his creative director and all else involved.
On almost every unsigned artists, you will come across features from artists whose work clearly does not merit this feature. Why are they even on this track? You will ask yourself. The answer is simple, they are friends of the artist. As you grow as an artist, you must cut-off all “Lean-Ons” people who cannot merit their place by your side and begin to ride on your buzz in order to try and create their own.