I’m sure you know the saying ‘Don’t judge a book by it’s cover’.. however sadly, that’s what usually happens in the music industry. Believe it or not, how you are perceived by the public has a direct connection with how successful you become – so why is it that so many artists are spending all this time promoting without first branding themselves?
In case you’re a little unsure, Branding has everything to do with how you are perceived by the public, whether it be online or offline. The last thing you want to do is portray a negative image of your brand. You want to make sure that at first glance, the image you put out represents YOU at your best.The more professional you look, the more opportunities will come to you, the more your music will get played (you get the point).
Ask yourself this, if someone judges you by your cover, what do they see? What type of image do you put out? Does your image reflect how you want to be perceived by the public? Would you be an instant fan of YOU?
This is a type of industry where you must always be ready – meaning that someone new can check you out at any given moment and you have to be on point in every aspect. A lot of the time, your music isn’t the first thing people are introduced to. You are first seen on social networks, blogs, websites etc. Think about it, when your friend tells you about something new and you want to know more about it, the first thing you do is look it up!
Answer me this:
Have you released music and performed at showcases in the past and spent hours upon end promoting but still didn’t get the response you were looking for? If you’ve ever had the feeling that your efforts just weren’t getting recognized, you might just have a few adjustments to make. It could be because when people looked you up, they didn’t even get a chance to hear your music because your website was hard to find (or it was non existent or hard to navigate), plus your name is different on all of your social media sites, so you don’t have a consistent image that the public can relate to. In other words – you don’t stand out – which (as harsh as this sounds…) means that you’re forgettable. So what can you do to capture your audience and make your brand memorable?
When it comes to branding, there are a few KEY components that an artist must have to attract the attention needed to succeed. These same components also separate the professionals from the amateurs:
1. You need to be easy to find. [Must have A personal website and/or blog that is basically a portal to everything having to do with you and your brand.]
2. People should be able to know your story in a matter of a few clicks. [Must have A well written professional Bio. This is a great way to gain interest of others, plus it opens the doors for other opportunities such as interviews, music reviews etc]
3. You need a consistent image that your fans can relate to. [You need a professional Logo that represents your brand to make you more recognizable]
4. Your online presence needs to be crisp, clean and memorable. [It always looks more professional if you have a custom Twitter background/Facebook cover and YouTube Channel Design. Basically your brand should stand out online]
5. You need to have a personal connection to your fans. [You need a mailing list!]
Just in case you’re still unclear on the effects of branding, let me give you one more scenario: You are performing at an event, there is only one other artist on the line up aside from you.
Other artist: Put on a decent performance and once he got off the stage, he made sure to mingle with as many people in the room as possible. He had business cards in hand that included links to his website and all of his social networks.
You on the other hand, put on a pretty amazing performance and once you got off stage people were coming up to you asking for your info – but you don’t have a website to tell them to go to, or a mailing list for them to sign up to, and since you have neither one, you didn’t bother making business cards with that info on them. So you shook hands and tried to remember as many twitter names as possible.
So now tell me, who got the best response from their performance? Who left the show with more twitter followers, more facebook likes, and more people subscribed to their mailing list? You guessed it, the other guy.
I can continue giving examples but by now I think you understand how important branding really is. So before you make another move, examine your brand with an open mind and be sure to focus on those five components listed above. If you need any help, please don’t hesitate to contact me on Twitter @BreezyB215 and we can start to get your brand in order! I’m looking forward to hearing from you.
There’s way too much competition out there, slacking isn’t an option when you’re aiming for success!