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7 REASONS New Artists FAIL with a January Album release!

What's the Deal? I have no experience.

Hey, Music money makers I hear you want to start the new year off with a bang!? You’re doing this because you want attention for yourself and the message that you want to convey to the people about your perspective on life through music.

You’re a brand-new artist which means you lack attention. Nobody knows you! You have no plan of action to get this attention nor did you consider where the consumer's mindset is currently positioned at this point in time.

Right now you’re pumped and amped to get the first release out and I’m proud of you! But tons of artists have been here before and after 24-48 hrs from your release, you’ll be deflated and lost because the momentum you had for releasing the album fell short so quickly!

All artists should experience just a little be of this pain so they can get their heads focused in the game. But to all my artists who are taking their second swing at the bat and still trying to release in January, you shouldn’t try it unless it comes with a plan of release for later down the road!

I can testify!

I understand that you think people are going to be ready to move and shake like you are, at the beginning of the year, but the truth is they are not. I’ve done this before and I can tell you that I too had to pivot my efforts for later.

Now let’s talk about the problems you're going to face!

1. It’s cold!

People are in survival mode and they will not budge for you unless it's about sustaining their survival until it warms up. This is the time music promoters and some DJs have a higher rate of scamming new artists the most. Because not only are you in survival mode but they are too. You’re looking for exposure and they are looking for the bag!

2. The consumer is trying to get back to zero

If it's your second time at bat then you may be considering selling your online merchandise and show tickets. However, your sale is going to be difficult because you must remember the consumer is trying to survive, get their money back from thanksgiving and Christmas, and they are also working on their goals to have a better year as well. They have given all their charity away in the fall. So, why would they continue to spend to support a new up-and-coming artist after their excess charitable funds are depleted?

This is not the time to execute on a “You never know policy”

3. Sacrifices are necessary for growth

You will have to sacrifice some singles, and for some an ep or mixtape, to build awareness for the real product down the line. If it's your second time at bat then you know you’re putting out singles and snippets as an awareness campaign to build for the real promo campaign that starts around the end of march. The real product is the album so as a new artist and new record label you should be working toward building momentum for the real products. The albums, and their associated merchandise and concert tickets.

4. The label structure

The label structure will fall by the wayside on the first release for new artists because when things don't go right it gets pushed further and further to the back while you’re thinking about what you can do to save a sinking ship that never had a navigation plan in the first place. Really what you have is a raft and you need to put together the label first so you can have a boat! That’s what you should be doing in the winter, preparing for spring.

Building your label at the top of the year is the equivalent of a person working out at the top of the year, you’re preparing for success!

5. The marketing plan

What is the reason for this album? How should consumers consume it? How big of a push and to what demographics should you target your focus?

Though these questions come with ease, as you gain experience you’ll see the marketing plan is one of the top reasons for failure because you only put your thoughts and efforts into the music and creative products, and not what you were going to actually do to sell them. Nor did you define who you were going to sell them to.

6. The Promo Plan

What did you plan on doing to get the momentum going in the target market that you determined from the last step? Many artists fail on their first album at the top of the year for this reason alone. They put no effort into the promo! It's already hard enough that it’s cold but combining that with no promo plan is ridiculous! This brings me to the next problem...

7. The Content Plan

Why didn’t you plan for more content besides a post that says my album is out now? Oh, that’s right because you didn't have a marketing plan, with means you didn't have a promo plan. The content plan is your top priority as a new artist which means you have to go back to problem #3 sacrificing some singles for momentum and then revisit 5,6, and 7 again.

8. The industry (Bonus)

The music industry knows these rules that's why they shut things down at Christmas and don’t really get things going until the second week of January. In January they are looking for promising acts for the mid-spring. This rule goes across the board for labels, Concert promoters, Music Promoters, and Marketers. They are more than likely not signing anyone at the top of the year until February because they are getting ready to launch the priorities they have been working on from last summer and fall for this spring.

But wait…! What about…?

  1. What if I understand all of these steps? Then you’re going to have to warm the people up for a big release.

  2. All of this is not true! I can market for my release at the top of the year just like any other cycle, right? Wrong! You will be running promo in the middle of thanksgiving and Christmas when everybody is primed to buy in the moment or putting their money elsewhere for their family for the betterment of themselves. The only thing you will gain is a listener on Spotify. That’s a small return for a big investment.

  3. How long should I wait to release? Late February to ****Mid march should be your earliest release date to start the promo.

You've got work to do!

Attack problem #4 building the structure of your label. You’re going to need that anyway and you can do it with the 60-Day Record Label Executive Edition.

Get your major planning work done in the first quarter so you can strike in the 2nd qtr

Define your market

Define the methods of Promotion

Define the content plan with the target market and the means of promotion

If you need help with your planning you can always book a call and we’ll go through things step by step.

What the end of the tunnel looks like

You will make the most of your winter season so you can be prepared for a successful launch in the spring. You’ll have a plan that will work again for the fall which brings you more fans and money. You’ll be able to expand your operations a lot easier.

What is the opposition?

If you choose to not get things in order:

You will have a harder time convincing people to listen. You’ll exude twice the amount of work that it will take to achieve the same amount of attention in the spring. You’ll lose momentum in 1 week as a new artist if you don’t make drastic changes.

You got this!

I know you didn’t understand the science of the consumer in the beginning. You’re only thinking from the artist's mindset. But soon you will begin to understand how your consumer buys products and listens to music like a real boss.

If you make music you should make money

Music Money Makers I see you next time!


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