Posted: Feb 22, 2016
Category: Selling Music
distribution fan engagement fanbase make money marketing plan music album release musicgoat.com preparation promotion singles stay relevant
**Guest post written by Corey Koehler, an indie singer-songwriter from Minnesota, as featured in his blog MusicGoat.com.
"Here's the deal:
For the past 30-40 years musicians have been releasing albums. Many times the time between those albums was a year or more.
Many bands and musicians these days still model their own release schedules after this same one.
This is a mistake.
These days you should be learning how to release a single and doing it often.
+The New Music & Entertainment Business: Easier Than You Think
A few years back I started to notice that fans were starting to shun albums.
This led me to try an experiment. For a full year, I released one single of my own music once per month.
Here is what I discovered.
1) You Stay Relevant
Assuming you are not god, and can whip out a full album every month, making your fans wait 6 months to a year (or more) between releases is an eternity these days.
Especially when there is so much else going on in the lives of the music fans that we are trying to win over.
By releasing singles, you stay relevant in a music market where releasing music only 1 or 2 times a year is almost the same as releasing nothing at all.
2) You Build A Loyal Fan Base Faster
When you release music, you are essentially opening the up the lines of communication with your fans. The more often that you release music, the faster you and your fans are going to get to know each other.
By releasing singles, you create a loyal fan base faster. A fan base that gets in the habit of getting music from you on a regular basis. They begin to anticipate each release. You win.
+Social Media: The Best Friend A Musician Never Wanted
3) You Crush Procrastination
By releasing singles you replace procrastination with the sense of purpose that is created from frequent delivery of music.
You can’t sit around and wonder why your career is going nowhere because you have work to do.
+Smash any goal using the Seinfeld Strategy
4) You Get Paid More Often
Get paid 8 – 12 times per year instead of just once or twice.
If you are willing to put in the time and effort, releasing singles is a great strategy. But how?
Like I mentioned earlier, I released singles as often as possible over the course of a year (once per month on average).
The following is a rough system I’ve developed which has worked pretty well in some areas but, I’m sure, could use some improvement.
I’ve divided the process into 3 parts; Preparations, Distribution and Amplification.
I usually create videos, credits, lyrics, album art, and a blog post up front and have them located in a single folder so when I get to start uploading and filling out album data. Nothing slows you down faster then having to stop everything to dig around for stuff.
Time to upload songs, videos and whatever else for distribution. This should be fairly painless if did your job in the preparation faze.
For my song files, I use Bandcamp as my main store where I try to send the bulk of my traffic on release day. I also used CDBaby for my music distribution to services like iTunes, Spotify, Amazon, etc.
For videos, I just used YouTube. In the past I’ve added videos to other sites like Vimeo and have used use a video distribution service like OneLoad too. Just takes more time and I am only a one man operation. For now, I get enough bang for my buck on YouTube. Really depends on how much time you have and what sort of presence you will have on the other platforms.
Once everything is live on your distribution channels, complete and publish your blog post.
+Major vs. Indie: What really happens when you sign a record deal
Now that everything is set up it is time to start telling your world via what I’m calling Amplification (could be a better term but it just sounds more musciany don’t you think?
I started by contacting everyone in my email list (if you don't have one you are screwing yourself).
Then I make my rounds in the social media world as well as reach out to any blogs, radio and podcast contacts that have featured my music in the past.
+How to Engage Your Fans to Launch Effective Word-of-Mouth Marketing Campaigns
That is the gist.
Everything I’ve listed above should give you a pretty good idea of why and how to release a single.
But, if you the kind of musicians who wants to dig deeper and improve your chances. Your chances of creating the maximum amount of buzz, adding new fans and selling all the singles you can, check out my free ebook “Sell More Singles.”
“Sell More Singles” contains an in-depth outline of the entire single release process.
Sound cool or what?
It is but I am biased. Go check it out for yourself.
Click here to get a FREE copy of my ebook “Sell More Singles” -> http://musicgoat.com/sell-music-online-ebook. You will see exactly how I built my fan base faster, generated more buzz and sold more music by releasing singles.
Get to it!"
Related Blog Posts:
+Pat Magnarella, Manager of Green Day, Talks Planning an Album Release
+Using Story and Storylines to Create Context for Your Content