The Musician’s Guide to the Complete Marketing Plan, Part I

Bobby Borg, author of Music Marketing for the DIY Musiciandetails a complete marketing plan for musicians in his latest article from SonicBids!

The Musician’s Guide to the Complete Marketing Plan, Part I

Marketing is the complete process of innovating products and services to satisfy fans, build awareness, and make sales. This process involves a series of important building blocks including researching, goal setting, strategizing, and executing. While these concepts are covered in detail in my book, Music Marketing for the DIY Musician, I’ve broken them down into 10 important steps over a three-part series. What follows are steps one through three, from describing your vision to analyzing your customers. So, which steps are you forgetting when marketing your music?

1. Describe your band’s vision and set your career on course

The first step in the marketing process involves identifying your “vision” and creating a vision statement – a declaration of where you’d like your career to be in seven to ten years down the road. A vision statement summarizes what you’re truly passionate about and includes everything from the type of music you’d like to create, the products you might release, and the overall brand image you might like to impart on your intended audience. With a clear vision statement, it’s far easier to map out the directions for how you’re going to get to your desired destination.

Long before Marilyn Manson hit the scene, he envisioned himself as being a pop star who would shock the world. According to one source in Ft. Lauderdale who knew him early on, Manson kept drawings of costumes and stage set designs along with other business and creative details in a personal notebook. This was Manson’s “North Star,” his guiding light. Several platinum albums later, he truly succeeded at bringing his vision to fruition.

As the saying goes, “If you don’t stand for something, you can surely fall for everything.” So what’s guiding your music career? If you haven’t thought about it before, now is a good time.

2. Identify opportunities or “needs” by conducting a SWOT analysis

While keeping your vision at heart, it’s time to examine what’s going on in the world around you to ensure that your vision actually fills a need and represents a true marketing opportunity. As previously stated, Marilyn Manson had a clear vision of being a pop star who shocked the world. But he also identified and filled a specific societal need and void in the marketplace for an entertaining and horrifically dramatic “new” stage personality, similar only to what a now aging Alice Cooper had done 23 years before. In other words, the marketplace was ripe for an artist like Marilyn Manson, and he capitalized on the opportunity unlike any other artist.

A valuable tool to help you examine the external (and internal) environments of the marketplace is called a SWOT analysis. SWOT is an acronym that stands for strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats. The idea is to identify external needs and opportunities that match your internal strengths (skills, etc.), but while also considering your internal weaknesses (finances, etc.) and external risks (competition, etc.) that could impede your ability to succeed. While all this might sound like business school jargon, the most successful companies, both big and small, use the SWOT model. With a little training, so can you!

Click here to view the rest of the article!

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About HLPAPG

Hal Leonard Performing Arts Publishing Group, the trade book division of Hal Leonard Corporations, publishes books on the performing arts under the imprints Hal Leonard Books, Backbeat Books, Amadeus Press, and Applause Theatre and Cinema Books.

Posted on April 9, 2015, in Music Fans, Music Industry and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 1 Comment.

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