I was in two minds about the "shall I give up" tagline as it was more about trying to fit an ill-thought-out Adele song lyric into my ramblings rather than one of those ultra cringe posts you see on social media when someone who hasn't sold a million albums in their first year of making music announces on Facebook, to their Nan and social worker, that they are about to inflict a crushing blow on the music industry by not rapping about smoking weed anymore. Anyway, with that out of the way, here's my latest blog entry:
I've been doing a lot of research about online marketing/PR/ads etc in regards to getting your music heard. A LOT of it is tailored around Spotify. I mean, that makes sense. But, I've come to the conclusion, well, not a closed case conclusion, more of an inkling that a lot of it, simply isn't worth it. At all. I've seen video testimonies where people have run ad campaigns with a budget between $500-$750. They have pretty good conversion rates and pretty good follow-up numbers. But, the meat and drink of it all is, for most of us, it's not viable to do. Your basically throwing money away.
For every artist that has elevated their "brand" (Jesus, I despise that word), there's another 300, 400, 500, 1000 that have got little to zero elevation from spending decent size budgets on PR. That can be down to many factors, quality of "product" as in, how good the ads are, or more importantly, how good the music is. But there are definitely people out there with great music, that simply can't crack the algorithmic code and are continually pissing in the wind, chasing numbers that only serve a few purposes. Some of it is to satisfy the ego, some of it is a genuine need to grow their fanbase. Probably a mixture of both to be honest. The worst part is, for all the money spent chasing digital numbers, you get paid an absolute pittance in return. Surely the answer should be tailoring your promo to digital downloads (I will BTW, have my own store on this website with physicals being one of my main focuses, very soon). For instance, say, two solitary people download a fairly priced £8 album of yours, that’s around the same money you’d receive as a Spotify track getting 5,000 plays. Crazy. How many people have you heard championing on social media about their gratitude for getting 5,000 plays? Quite a bit. How many people do the same for 2 album sales? They got us out here celebrating paltry sums that completely undermine artistic value and integrity. Leave me the fuck out.
What is the answer to all this? Well, in the words of Jimmy Rabbitte, “you’re f****ed if I know Terry!”. I suppose it’s down to either gaining a much deeper understanding of the digital marketing age than I have or employing someone to do it for you. That could be a minefield in itself. What should definitely be off the table is paying one of the many thousand “grow your Spotify profile” bottom-feeding companies to help you. That’s a complete waste of time. Plus, most people with entry-level knowledge of music can spot artists with fake numbers. If you have 300,000 listens to songs but couldn’t sell enough tickets for a live show to fill your living room, that’s a red flag of gigantic proportions. I guess I’m just wary of getting the whole “invest in myself/blowing money out of my arse” balance wrong.
Until then, I’ll keep trying and just focus on releasing the best music I can. Anyone who reads this, that can GENUINELY help me out with marketing/PR, there’s a contact form on this website. Send me a message.