Marketing yourself is a key step to launching, and maintaining, your music career. With so many different ways to go about it, we’ve got the most up to date tips for you courtesy of Coalition’s own Devi & Andrea:
Know who you are. What’s your genre? What are you currently pushing? Know yourself, your band and your brand in order to be able to sell your product.
Have a target audience. What ages do you appeal to? How are you reaching them? Have a firm handle on who your music is reaching, and who you want it to.
Know what you are promoting! Are you focused on a single? An album? Consider a unique approach - but make sure it’s cohesive.
Realize there is no such thing as down time! Never stop networking, create Vlogs, collaborate, engage with fans - the possibilities are endless! For more tips on being creative during down time head here!
Pitching yourself between floors 1 and 29 may seem like an easy feat, but when it comes down to it, it’s a lot harder than you anticipate! While you may not be in a physical elevator when you’re pitching yourself, this technique is crucial to self-marketing. Our in house marketing experts Devi & Andrea have seven great tips on how to make the most of that elevator ride!
1. Introduce yourself/your band.
2. Localize yourself.
3. Relate yourself to other artists.
4. Use specific descriptors, but limit yourself to just a few.
5. Don’t sound scripted, keep it conversational.
6. You want your pitch to entice others to do more research so be interesting!
7. Your pitch should end with a question to make sure the conversation continues!
Songwriting is a collaborative process. It’s very rare that one person is responsible for creating a song from start to finish. When you write with like-minded artists amazing things can happen. Coalition’s Artist in Residence Sean Kelly gave our Artist Entrepreneur program, CMAE, tips for making the collaboration process flow smoothly…
Planning and executing a tour is no easy feat, as the Coalition Music Tour & Tech Academy (CMTTA) participants are learning this week. There are hundreds of decisions to make and each one could potentially turn a successful tour into a nightmare fueled by pain and misery (ok, maybe your choice between towel rental companies won’t bring on the end of the world but you never know).
Our office houses five expert tour managers who were all eager to explain the most important aspects to consider when putting a tour together…
Eric: Know Your Budget
Always keep the budget in mind. Make sure the income outweighs the costs of being on the road.
Rob: Plan, Plan, Plan
Hope for the best but anticipate the worst. Make back up plans to your back up plans on everything from vehicle choice to hotels. Something will go wrong, it’s all about how you handle it.
Julian: Advance Shows Properly
Advancing a show before hitting the road is the easiest way to prevent disasters. Call ahead and get every change in writing.
Jesse: Check the Weather
Hitting the road in different seasons require different plans. Playing shows in the winter is different than in the summer. Both seasons also bring along different travel issues to consider.
Liam: Basic Knowledge of Geography
You’re planning a tour…know what cities are near each other.
So your business cards came in the mail and you’re ready to meet potential employers…now what? Well, you better get that resume up to date! Coalition’s HR rep Beverley has some great tips to make sure your resume and cover letter gets you the gig! She’s no joke either, getting your resume past her is like beating the elite four with a team full of magikarps.
INCLUDE A COVER LETTER!!! Even if they don’t ask for one send that sucker in. Think of your resume and cover letter like a movie trailer. What do trailers do? They’re a short preview that entices viewers into wanting to see more. Your cover letter and resume should work just like that.
Remember Who You Are… Include a personal statement about yourself along with your resume. You want to give the person reading it the best idea of who you are as a worker and a person. You could be the best up and coming tech or musician out there but if you don’t gel with the company environment you won’t get a call back.
Suit Up! Tailor your resume and cover letter to the job posting. There’s nothing more obvious than a template cover letter and resume. Use keywords from the job description and do some research on the company you’re applying to. Oh, and make sure everything is spelled correctly. You’d be surprised how many people still mix up your/you’re and there/their/they’re.
5 Second Rule. Most recruiters scan resumes in 5 seconds. They have to get through hundreds a day so yours needs to stand out. Creative writing, and even creative design, will keep a reader interested. Formatting is incredibly important! Also, sending a resume in a PDF format instead of DOC ensures that the formatting you see is the same formatting they’ll see. It also prevents anyone from editing your resume without your consent.
Pretty simple right? Resumes are usually the first thing your employer will see, spend time on it. It could make a huge difference and get you an interview or even the job.
Business cards are the easiest and fastest way to exchange personal information with potential clients and employers. They are your first impression and hopefully what gets your foot in the door. Here are five great reasons you should get some wherever you are in your career:
They’re Small: Unless you really like lugging around printed copies of your resume, business cards are the next best thing. They take up like 3” of space and can fit in your wallet.
They Don’t Have To Be Complicated: Keep it simple. If you don’t have a technical work title/company link then leave it off. Your name, number, and email are sufficient. You can get good cards for a relatively low cost, but consider investing in the design and card stock. With no company attachment these cards will last you a long time.
You Won’t Be Seen As Pretentious For Having One: For some reason a lot of people thing they’ll look stupid with a business card that isn’t linked to a company. Well guess what? You’re going to feel even more ridiculous asking to type your contact info into a potential client’s phone or writing it on a scrap of paper.
They Can Make A Lasting First Impression: Be thoughtful with your design. This is literally your calling card to potential work. If you’re looking to get into a creative field showcase that on your card. Technological forward thinking is always a plus to some employers, like using QR codes or USB integration.
The Tour and Tech Academy took part in a merchandising workshop this week. Working merch for a band isn’t a simple job. Merch people need to be fast workers and crazy organized. It’s not a job for the faint of heart, especially at the arena level.
If you’re brave enough, here’s what you need to know about setting up the merch table:
1. Use Your Space. Make sure your displays are visibly pleasing. Avoid gaps and hang smaller items at eye level for fans to see.
2. Label! Label! Label! Include a master list of all items and then also tag each item individually. Include the sizing, price, and what sizes are still available. This will help make transactions as fast as possible.
3. Specialty Items Should Be Marked. Signed merchandise or limited edition items should be clearly marked and separate from any non-signed versions. There’s usually a price difference for these items and that should be marked.
4. Tape Things Down. If you’re placing anything on a table in front of you tape it down. Tape one CD face up and one face down so fans can see both sides without needing to hold it. Leave out one example and keep the rest of the small items under the table or behind you.
5. Everyone Loves Free Stuff. Buttons, pins, and promo posters are great marketing tools. If your band has giveaways put them in front of you on the table.
Is the Festival Life for you? Here is a list of upcoming deadlines:
Canadian Music Week
Canadian Artist Deadline: November 30, 2013
International Artist Deadline: December 31, 2013
Festival Dates: May 8-10, 2014
Location: Toronto, Canada
The Great Escape
Deadline: January 1, 2014
Festival Dates: May 8-10, 2014
Location: Brighton, UK
North by Northeast Conference and Festival
Early Bird Pricing Increases: December 1, 2013
Deadline: January 31, 2014
Festival Dates: June 13 - 22, 2014
Location: Toronto, Canada
Deadline: February 14, 2014
Festival Dates: August 1-3, 2014
Location: Sackville, New Brunswick, Canada
This week at our Tour and Tech Academy CMTTA we are talking about the importance of contracts at live shows! Our co-founders Eric and Rob break it down for you.
Here are some examples of different live performance contracts:
Our #Tour and #Tech Academy #CMTTA is officially in full swing and everyone is itching to get on the road. But how many know how to advance a show? Or border etiquette? Or the other, essential, skills needed to be a successful Tour Manager? Our Coalition Music co-founders Eric and Rob share their knowledge!
#CMTTAtricks #1: Advancing and Prep Work
A tour does not get confirmed until the manager, agent and artist have approved the entire routing, offers and logistics, as well as trying to get funding in many cases. This means that, a lot of the time, the Tour Manager and crew gets hired very last minute with very little time to “advance” the shows with the local Promoter – be prepared! You will have to sort out all logistical issues before the tour starts. The TM will have to make sure that the artist’s Riders, Stage Plot, Input List, etc. are up to date and send them off to the Promoters. You will need to follow up with the Promoters to make sure they received them. You and the Promoter will need to speak well (more than once) in advance of the concert date in case there are any technical and non-technical issues. Be mindful that many promoters are busy and may not get back to you quickly. Simply sending an email and waiting 3 days before you try again won’t cut it. Pick up the phone and call him/her. If they don’t get back to you in a reasonable amount of time (24-48hrs) then you have to let the manager and/or agent know.
For the aspiring (and well seasoned) stage-tech, here is a list of the tools that you need at your disposal at all times while on the road.
-Flashlights (small one and large one)
-Small Roll of Gaff Tape
-Small Roll of Electrical Tape
-Toothpicks for cleaning in-ear monitors
-Solder Gun and Solder
-Spare Guitar Picks
-Furniture polish for Guitars and Drums (cymbal cleaner for TV/Video shoots).
-Blank Paper for Set Lists
-Spare Electronic ends (1/4”, XLR etc)
#CMTTAtricks #4: Be A Jack Of All Trades
• Drive a car, truck, van, a driver’s license (minimum class G), is a must. There will be numerous occasions when you will be renting a vehicle or driving the band’s vehicle.
• Manual transmission. You never know when you’ll jump behind the wheel and look to your right (or left in some countries) and see a stick shift and three pedals on the floor.
• Backing up a trailer. An absolute must. This is something that will instantly label you as a loser if you don’t know how to do it properly.
• Circular saw, drill, soldering gun, hammer. Learn to use these things. You will be asked to do some crazy shit at times and your ability to use these tools will make you a superstar.
All of these things will come in handy pre and post tours and make you a valuable team member.