Feeling uncomfortable with marketing yourself means you’re on-track –says Petra Tool
I rarely use a real person’s name in titles of my work, but this one could only be named after my muse: “Miss Laura Vane”. (see full sized image below)
Offstage, she turned out to be way more down to earth than I expected. She was easy to approach – not only by me, but also by her fans.
I decided to pursue Laura on a subject we normally don’t associate with art: self-promotion.
Different Ways of Getting Noticed
One of the most unconventional ways Laura used to promoted herself was throwing around cards with her band’s name on it at the London Underground:
“Somebody actually did pick up the card and contacted me about doing a vocal session. It led me to the guy that I started writing with, 6 years ago.”
Laura was quick to add that she wouldn’t think of doing that now since she’s a bit older and wiser…and realizes that it was littering.
Over time, she’s become deeply immersed in social media, to make sure people who are interested, always know where to listen, buy the music or contact her:
“I’m at LinkedIn, Myspace, Youtube, Facebook, Soundcloud, have a mailing list, send out newsletters, and have a website.”
Laura and her bassist Ton have printed up business cards with info about their on-line forums.
They leave these everywhere they can.
“We’re constantly thinking of ways of getting the music we make, to the people.”
Will you feel uncomfortable or even feel some shame when you start to market yourself relentlessly?
At the beginning, you probably will. It’s actually a good sign; it means you are not playing it too safe.
You will get used to it, and from your experiences you will learn which strategies work for you.
You’re a Business
Laura stressed with me the futility of pouring so much energy into music without also telling people about that music.
Think of your singing as a small business – it’s part of your job to promote yourself, or your music will be unheard by so many people.
Read about networking, branding, sales marketing, search for inspiration at successful artists in all disciplines.
One of the most funny stories I heard was about a web designer who lived under a flight path of an airport, and painted his website address on his roof!
It makes your own crazy promotion ideas seem a lot more conventional, doesn’t it?
Petra Tool is a Dutch artist and artist’s coach. A gifted portrait artist, she explores the personalities of gifted performers, interviewing them about their talent, passions, the problems they face,
their insecurities and secrets of their success. You can find more information on her website.
More articles by Petra Tool:
Painting: Miss Laura Vane – 70×100 cm – watercolour – Petra Tool