Music is the soundtrack to our lives and therefore a powerful communication tool. But before you commit to that music marketing initiative or licensing deal, make sure you are on the right track with this industry advice.
1. Make sure you have the right concept for your brand first, as this is the most important element of a successful campaign and the artists and/or music you want to associate with your concept are secondary.
2. Make sure you’re dealing with the right people as the music industry is full of middlemen, agents, brokers and managers who add time and costs to the process and may have different agendas.
3. Record companies and music publishers will encourage you to use their artists exclusively, regardless of whether they are the best act for your brand.
4. Either pursue superstars or back unknowns. One direction will enhance your brand by association, or you can get involved with emerging young talent (who may become superstars one day) and provide support at the grass roots level.
5. Be flexible with lead times to take advantage of current music trends and emerging talent. Every artist has a writing, recording, promoting, touring life cycle with more opportune times for your brand during this cycle than others.
6. Consider the merits of working with local artists, as well as the opportunities with international superstars, and trade off between profile and accessibility in this marketplace.
7. Regardless of the ‘promotional value’ your concept gives the artist, managers can’t take their 15% of ‘promotional value’.
8. What can you offer other than money? If you can genuinely help sell more music or tickets to events without compromising your marketing objectives you can use this as part of your negotiations.
9. Different genres of music appeal to different demographics, and different genres can have different life cycles. Genres such as pop can see acts become popular very quickly, while genres aimed at older demographics can take longer to get mass appeal, however this appeal is often more enduring.