Skip to content

How do we market our new album? Part 4

July 3, 2011

Barbary Lion wallpaper

See parts 1, 2 and 3

Offering people a choice of paying their own price or downloading Barbary Lion free has been an interesting experiment. So far, about one in seven people have chosen to pay. While some have paid $10 or $15, several have paid from $1 to $3. Bandcamp takes a cut (which is fair enough) but there’s also a small fee to PayPal for processing the payment. The danger is that if someone pays a small amount, the fees pretty much wipe out any money that might have come to us. It’s a balancing act. If we then decide to set a minimum price, we run the risk of alienating the majority of our downloaders, who either can’t or don’t want to pay. We are ideologically committed to not preventing anyone from acquiring our music, so it’s not an option we’re inclined to choose for this album. So far, though, I think we’re the right side of things; the higher paying customers are keeping us in the black and have, indeed, paid for our hosting elsewhere.

Who’s buying the album so far? Lots of our friends and musical contacts have, it seems, which is fair enough but I genuinely hope they buy it because they like it, not just because they know us. We’ve been a little surprised at the relatively small number of downloads to our several hundred Facebook ‘likers’, particularly as they don’t have to pay. Having said that, not everyone logs in to FB all day every day like I do! It’s only been a week.

We’ve made sure that we’ve placed album tracks on sites such as Last FM and Official FM, with links to the Bandcamp download page.

It’s tricky thinking up new ways to pimp the album. We can only hassle people on Facebook so much without pissing them off. We only have so many people following us on Twitter and, once again, if we push too hard, they will just filter us out.

We play tunes from the album in our podcast and this leads to some interest. The MixCloud version is easy to embed in at least some social networking sites. We also email the artists whose tunes we’ve played. This brings us new contacts and gets our name out there. Everyone in our musical world knows who we are.

So, we’re trying to come up with what to do next. How can we reach further out to a new audience? We have considered advertising in music journals but we think this is almost certainly a waste of money. Firstly, there aren’t very many now and advertising is very expensive. We’re not convinced that any of our likely target audience would read such things anyway. The days are long gone when everyone into music would read the NME, Sounds or Melody Maker, and all you had to do was choose which one your target demographic was tribally loyal to. When we released Babylon Halt, I advertised in The Wire for two months, which is far from cheap. It led to literally no sales at all. None. Zip. I had considered it to be a very likely way to reach people who would appreciate that album. This might well have even been true but we simply can’t afford to take financial hits like that, so chancy advertising may well not be a route to explore this time.

Broken Drum Records

5 Comments leave one →
  1. July 3, 2011 10:59 am

    Couple of thoughts:

    Are you getting enough exposure via friends networks? Obviously all the people that are your friends know about your releases, but are they re-tweeting or re-posting to their friends on social networks? You need to reach the people who you have +1 or more degrees of seperation from.

    Got any reviewers that you’d especially like to review the album? Contact them directly and see if they can be persuaded.

    I imagine you’ve sent a CD off to the usual suspects in radio.

    Send an email shot with the download link in it to everyone you know. Maybe they don’t do facebook that often, but email more regularly?

    How’s the remix idea coming along? Can you get your remixers to re-tweet the ambum?

    Check the referral links via your website’s logs. Where’s the good traffic coming from? Follow it?

    That’s my 10 dirams worth……

  2. July 3, 2011 11:31 am

    Thanks Pete – some of those in the pipeline.

  3. July 3, 2011 7:35 pm

    Just one thought, Vince. If you could locate the email addresses of radio stations worldwide, you could email them the link.

    I know there are some radio stations in my part of the world that might be interested in “Barbary Lion”.

  4. July 3, 2011 9:04 pm

    Hi Phil. Yes, already sent links and tunes (via Soundcloud) to a few college stations etc but most radio is still in the dark ages and only wants physical product and a load of disclaimers signed before they’ll accept anything. We could send CDRs but we don’t have an officially released physical product so most stations wouldn’t be interested..However, as I said, I’ve sent a few off to places that seem like they might be.


  1. How do we market our new album? Part 7 « Secret Archives of the Vatican

Let us know what you think of this post. Thanks!

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: