Are you a newer artist still working on trying to gain traction? Are you just starting out and still working on your first song? Here are some tips for any new artist trying to make a name for themselves.
No one will be waiting for you to release your music, unless of course you’re like me and your mom keeps asking about it. Regardless, you have to grow your own fan base by promoting your music in all types of ways. Try making sure you focus on making the best art so that you can develop a core group of fans. These fans can be group of friends, family, or even followers who really enjoy what you create. These people will be the ones who will help support your art by sharing it on all their platforms. However, also make a social media presence yourself, so you can promote and share the music to other mutuals.
Understand what type of artist YOU want to be. Artists come in wide variety of styles, and coming into the music industry one of the main things newer artist have trouble with is finding their identity and sound. Create what makes you happy and develop your sound around that. Pull from different experiences and influences until you find something that fits you and what you want to portray. Now how do you want to market yourself? These go hand in hand and can help you curate a brand for yourself.
The internet is your friend! Especially in the last year, the pandemic has made virtual communication so much more vital. Connecting with piers across each social platform to create a network can always be beneficial. Developing a social presence and marketing is is next in line after creating a quality art when it comes to growing your career. There are a number of resources that explain how to run advertisements to broaden your reach as you continue to put out more content.
Stay humble. Make sure the people around you are people who are genuine, and you should always be genuine with them. Ask people for honest feedback when about what you put out. Thank everyone who helps you get your music out there, because without them how else will it gain any traction?
Open mics & getting local gigs. If you live in a smaller town, sometimes finding local open mics or bars to have small gigs at is easier than a competitive big city, so use it to your advantage. Whether you are performing original work or covering songs, performing live will help gain performing experience. Look into other venues, as well. There’s more than just performing at clubs and restaurants.
Make it your own. Besides having musical influences, being your own artist is also about creating music that is true to who you are. On one hand it’s good to stand out and make something unique, but don’t make something just because you want to be noticed. Make something that you would want to hear and that you’re actually proud of.
Don’t restrict your genres. There are so many different types of music out there, so branch out and experiment. Try out different sounds because there’s an audience for everything and maybe you’ll find something new you’ll like.
Creating recognizable photos and logos. We all know what the Rolling Stones symbol is, right? An eye catching logo or album cover can be the difference that sets you apart from others. Learn about graphic design yourself, or hire someone (or a friend) who knows about graphic design. Same goes with photography, make it look as professional as you can, because it’ll be the cover forever. How do you want to be remembered?
Learn about more than just the artist side. There is more to the music industry besides music and lyrics. There is publishing, licensing, marketing, accounting, and so much more that goes into the music business. Check out a book or a class about licensing music or just reach out to people in the industry who have a job you want to learn more about. Just open your eyes and ears to all corners of the industry, because it could put you at an advantage.
Try again and again and again. Never give up on your dream. Having trouble finishing a song? Step away from it and come back to it another day. Not getting a chord right? Take a deep breath, step away, and come back to it later. There’s no reason why you need to rush perfection, it’s all about nurturing your talent. So, take your time and always try, try again.