What’s The Big Deal (about you)?

© 2010 Vinny Ribas

In order to gain regional, national and international exposure, you need to ‘create a buzz’. What that means is that you need to give fans, other artists and music industry personnel one or more reasons to talk about you. If you do this effectively, your notoriety will grow virally, resulting in increased name recognition, more hits to your website, more subscribers to your newsletter, and ultimately, more gigs and music sales.[private_freebie]

Keep in mind that you can generate a positive buzz, where people are praising you and talking you up to their friends, on their blogs, on their social networks etc., or you can generate a negative buzz in which people are talking you down, laughing at you, making fun of you etc. Obviously your goal is to create a positive buzz. To do that, something you do, say or play has to set you apart from the masses. In other words, something has to be a ‘big deal’.

Here are some ways to get people talking positively about you:

  • Better than good music and/or lyrics. Mediocrity will not be enough to break through the masses. o Unique music and/or lyrics. This could refer to anything from your unusual or unusually good arrangements, unique instrumentation, hooky song melodies and lyrics, crossing over several genres etc. 
  • You strike a chord. In other words, you reach an audience who relates to your message. o You align yourself with a cause. People love to support people who support the same causes they do, 
  • You align yourself with a brand (Harley rallies) or sport (Nascar, football etc.). 
  • Your marketing is unique (website, MySpace, newsletters etc.). This could range from great, unique graphic design to where you market. For example, if you have a CD all about the beach, surfing etc, imagine having in included any time someone bought a certain brand of swimwear.
  • You get people to interact with you. Engage your fans with contests, effective social networking etc.
  • You reward people for promoting you. This could be as simple as ‘forward this newsletter to 5 friends and get a free download. Indie artist, Amber Rubarth, (www.amberrubarth.com) recently had a recording session at the legendary Sun Studios in Memphis. The session was filmed and turned into a show for PBS stations. She is offering a free song from her sessions for anyone who calls their local PBS affiliate and requests that they air the show.
  • You get personal. Ask your friends to help you name your new dog. Tell them when you found a great new place to eat. Make them feel like a friend.
  • You offer more than just music. Do you take photographs? Are your lyrics picturesque or poetic enough to publish a book of them? Can you offer something free with every CD sold, or package your music with something unique?
  • You win competitions. Every time you come in the top 10, or actually win a regional or national music-related comptition, you get a flood of publicity. You also get bragging rights. But you can’t win if you don’t enter!
  • You are everywhere they turn. This includes on numerous social networks, in magazines, your widgets and/or music are on your fan’s websites and pages etc. In other words, there is no way that you can be ignored.
  • You get endorsements and sponsorships. It doesn’t matter if it is from a music-related company, a boat manufacturer or anything in between. Getting these gives you credibility.
  • You get your shows and music reviewed (positively, of course). People love to check out new music that they see a great review of. Then they like to brag about their ‘discovery’ to their friends.
  • You find ways to get publicity. This includes newspaper, web and newsletter articles, TV interviews and performances, radio interviews, exposure for performing at high-profile charity events etc.

In other words, figure out what makes you a ‘big deal’, and then exploit/market that strength or characteristic to get the world talking about you!

About The Author

Vinny Ribas

Vinny Ribas is the founder and CEO of Indie Connect, an artist management, consulting and training company. The company also hosts networking and educational events and has published an app that connects people to the Nashville Music Industry. During his 40+ year career, Vinny has been a full time musician, artist manager, booking agent, songwriter, studio owner, producer and the Entertainment Director for the NV State Fair. He has also coached over 1000 artists and songwriters. He is a sought after speaker and has authored over 400 music industry articles. Vinny is also the CEO of Top 4M Entertainment, an independent film and television production company.