Thursday, October 30, 2008

The Anatomy of a Music Business BUZZ

I tend to post my own personal tips that I've learned from experience or dealt with first had on this blog but sometimes tips from others are helpful - especially if it's someone who has the same business mind frame as myself :) Not saying that I know everything but obviously if someone else thinks the way I do, a successful someone, then hey, I must be on point some how - aye?

The following write up was written by my MySpace friend, SlowJam Powell. SlowJam & I previously came together on our erotica work, but it seems our music views are just as great as our sexual erotica work! I can dig it! - CaT

The Anatomy of a Music Business BUZZ
By Xavier J. Powell

Today's music consumers are very skeptical, and they suffer from media overload. The result: they'll probably ignore the mixtapes or new releases that most artists promote. So how do consumers decide which song to download or which album to buy?

The answer: They don't.

Buzz is equated to word of mouth – the recommendations of friends and the buzz that develops in the marketplace. Buzz is suppose to sell your product or service – if you know how to create it. This article will help the music professional understand how it works and how it can help grow your business.

The Music BUZZ Phenomenon

The difference between "artists" and "recording professionals" is this: "Artists" releases mixtapes and brags about an article just to feel good about themselves (all the while claiming that its creating a buzz) while "recording professionals" focuses on how to use advertisements (or PR) to influence individual consumer buying behavior for their products or services. They know that for many products, purchasing is part of a social process. In other words, these professionals rely on friends, family, and co-workers for recommendations about everything from which movie to see to what album they should buy. This is the anatomy of creating a buzz.

Buzz starts with a superior user experience; nothing will help your product if it doesn't deliver such an experience. Most releases or performances, doesn't create any response from anyone. It's the same ole, same ole in music. If you want to generate a real buzz, you should underpromise and overdeliver. Then, instead of pushing the product on customers, let the product spread itself through the industry.

Questions to ask yourself

If you want to create a real music business buzz, you have to know WHO your customers are and how you are reaching them.
Start with these questions:

From whom do your customers typically learn about your products?

What do people say when they recommend your CD or performance?

How fast does information about your product spread as compared with your competitors' products?

Does your product evoke an emotional response? What response is that?

Two things are needed to create a music business buzz successfully. First, you need a contagious product (song or performance). But that's not enough. The products creator needs to reach out and spread the word to the rest of the world. Your company must have at least one person who is obsessed with spreading the word.

Now spreading the word requires hard work. You have to organize a sales blitz, ignore traditional distribution channels and try different approaches. One way is to convince opinion leaders in their network to tell others about it. Opinion leaders are connected, travelers, information-hungry, vocal, and exposed to the media.

Second is ammunition. Give the people something to talk about. This is why you must get out and circulate. Date, be seen, engage others and stimulate discussions within this network. The secret though is to be scarce with what you offer. Performing and being seen every week at the same clubs is not too appealing. Remember this when trying to build a buzz.

Six rules about BUZZ.

Keep it simple. Elaborate campaigns are not always needed.

Tell what's new. Don't bother with self-praise; focus on what's new with the product or service.

Don't make claims that you can't support. Don't say that it's the biggest showcase of the year in January. What happens if you have another showcase in July? Will it be the second biggest showcase of the year?

Ask your customers what's so special about your product or performance. If they can't articulate it, they can't pass it on.

Start measuring buzz. After your campaign, ask your customers if they recommended what you offered.

Listen to the buzz. Ask your customers what they think of your product and services.

Remember, nothing happens until something is sold. There's nothing to a buzz about if nothing was brought. How can you measure a buzz if you have no numbers to compare it with? I know of one artist who is always "creating a buzz" but there is no end result.

Hopefully, this will help to aid in your "buzz."

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