The Internet did one thing right -- it helped level the playing field for
the unsigned and unheard artists out there. Thanks to sites like 1Sound,
IUMA, Soundclick, MP3.com and Ampcast your demo is now just one click away
from being heard by anyone in the world. But times have changed. Artists
have to try a little harder to be heard. So do read
Life After MP3.com and
Five Ways to Make Money on
MP3.com for ways to get heard -- and get paid -- online these days.
Here are a few more tips to make a splash.
1. If you are on MP3.com contact MP3.com stations. MP3.com has an active
community. With 20 million registered users how can it not be active. Well,
fans and artists have set up stations which provide a playlist of their MP3.com
highlights. Check out the stations that best fit your profile and e-mail
the station creators. Be polite. Be personal (point out what you liked about
his or her station, why you think your songs -- or a particular song -- belongs
there). Naturally, you can create your own station too. But if you also attach
your song to established popular stations it will go a long way. You will
see a few we have set up ourselves on the
Liquid Stereo homepage.
2. Become an active member of the indie artist ommunity. Most music sites
have active message boards. If you come across a site that looks cool look
for any forum, community of message board links. Go in. Make a difference.
Listen and be heard.
3. Similar Artists. When you filled out the artist registration at MP3.com
did you fly past the Similar Artists question? Go back and fix it. That's
a critical tool. Every day, more than a half-million users go to MP3.com.
They seek out music and when the artist is not available they get the list
of "similar artists" -- like you. Some bands get sneaky and try to put popular
artists that don't sound like them at all. Big mistake. What's better, to
build a better fanbase, is to be genuine and as specific as possible. Be
the fan and punch in similar artists first. If you find one that has just
a few "similar artists" you hit paydirt. It's easier to get noticed that
way. Be one of the five Men at Work or Nickelbacks or Jessica Simpsons than
one of the 700 Weezer and Britney Spears "similars" on MP3.com.
4. NMA. MP3.com offers a great venue for outside promotion. There are close
to 10,000 members of the New Music Army. They promote individual MP3 artists.
Liquid Stereo is one, but seek out what is best for you. The cost? Nothing.
MP3.com will pay the NMA rep 5% of any CD sales that the artist generates
out of MP3.com's pocket. So the artist is getting paid the same. 100%. It's
105% with NMA. There aren't any wealthy NMA members. This is a labor of love.
If you want Liquid Stereo to serve as your NMA rep, just go to your MP3.com
Administration area, click on "Promote Your Band" and type in email@example.com
as your NMA rep. Liquid Stereo will then consider your music and contact
you immediately. If we can't help you we won't waste your time.
5. More music! Don't hold back. Upload as much as you can, everywhere you
can. Even though MP3.com went to just three tracks for its basic free site,
go ahead an upload six different tracks at
1Sound and many more for free at IUMA
or Soundclick. The more songs you have out there the more signposts you have
leading music fans into your site. And the more listens and downloads, well,
the more exposure and airplay.
6. Outside promotion. The world does not end outside of MP3.com. Get your
MP3.com -- or your favorite artist page of choice, or your own website --
known. Is your local newspaper online? Of course it is. Get them to link
to you in their entertainment section. Put up flyers in area music stores.
Visit other online newsgroups and forums with similar slants as your music
and let them know where to find you. If you have a website, promote your
presence on other Online Music Distributors. Traffic means higher chart rankings
and money -- and while you are doing it all for the art this is what will
bring more people to your art. For some more active promo tips, do check
out Life After MP3.com.
Now for some more opportunies. . .
Press - Merchandising goes beyond your music. Cafe Press will
help you go that next step. Put your photos and artwork on t-shirts, mugs,
mousepads -- and let Cafe Press run the store. It's a free service and you
will keep the mark-up on every single items sold.
Share - You have an MP3.com page. You have traffic. Why not generate
some ad revenue?
LinkShare is a collection of hundreds of online stores who will pay you for any customers
you send over. They will give you the full text link and graphical link to
stores like Buy.com and Sony Music. It's pocket change, but it's your
pocket change. Also join the biggest affiliate master of them all --
Junction. The great thing about CJ is that they will merge
all of your affiliate payments and pay you monthly once your royalties top
$25. Yes, ads on artist pages is a delicate issue, but as long as you pick
the right ones -- and you have complete control -- you'll be fine.
Friend - Hey, you're online. You don't have to pay up for
music and recording gear locally. Try the Internet leader, Guitar Center's
online biz, Musician's Friend. Look for great deals on exclusive closeouts.