The idea of this lesson is to create something really cool that you can give away to people for free, then approach other websites and influencers who have the ear of your potential fans to distribute it.
The great thing about this process is that you don’t even need a website or any money to get started because we are going to be using some wicked free tools to set this up.
The incentive for the sites you work with is to be able to offer their readers a really special and unique product for nothing. With a bit of luck (and some help from you) they will send it out to their mailing lists, post a link on their social media pages and do all manner of other things to spread your freebie around.
At the end of this lesson you’ll be able to send a pitch email like this…“Hey I’d like to set up a special promotion to offer 200 of your readers a free copy of my latest album package (usually it goes for $25)… is that cool?”
…pretty tempting right!
But that’s not even the best bit…
… because all those new hits will go over to Facebook where you will ask people to “Like” your page in return for the freebie. You can now keep on entertaining them long into the future and posting the odd link to something they can buy.
Let’s get into the action =>
Step 1 – Creating your package offer…
Forget about a couple of MP3s…your thing needs to be real tempting to convince people it’s worth a mention.
The question is how do you create something worth $25 (or more) that will cost you hardly anything to create or deliver?
The simple answer here is that you need to set up a package offer.
A little hop over to Itunes confirms that the going rate for a new album right now is around $10.99 with a music DVD often being sold at around $15.99. So to convince potential partners that your thing is worth spreading around we’re going to base our offer around that.
Here’s what I suggest you put together….
Create a file on your computer and spend a little while setting up the best darn free offer that your fans have ever come across.
- 10 track album (Just a collection of the best songs you got)
- Album artwork (An image to represent the front cover. You can create this in Pixlr, it should be 12cm by 12cm)
- Handwritten lyrics (Scan your songbook, if you don’t have a songbook get one! It adds a lot of value to your package)
- Album documentary video (15 minutes long will do, uploaded as a private YouTube video. Here is a killer example from one of my clients. Either make it yourself or find a friend or film student to help)
- Video of a live show (Go back to your new movie producer and ask her to come down to a gig. Offer them BEER!)
- Bonus track and outtakes (A couple of acoustic versions from he album will do)
- Photo album (Document one of your shows from the time you arrive to when you leave the venue at the end)
Note: One thing I should mentioned when it comes to delivering videos is that it’s going to be easier if you just create a word document that introduces each movie then links people over to private YouTube videos. Uploading and downloading online video takes ages and is not a slick process for you or your fans. (But again you want to let people know upfront that these are private ‘just for them” to keep your thing special and valuable)
So that’s the package offer done…I think anybody would agree that all those goodies are worth at least $25 so you’re not going to have to beg people to spread your thing around. Feel free to add in anything else you can think of as long as it does not cost you much and people can download it. (Don’t offer a free puppy or anything like that )
Step 2 – Compress and upload your package
To make your file easier to manage you want to compress it before uploading…
All you have to do is put all your files into a folder on your computer and then turn it into something called a “Zip file”.
Now that your package is created we need to put it somewhere online so that your people can download it…
The usual place would be a website hosting account but we are going for the free option here so Google docs will do just fine.
Watch the video below for details…
Step 3 - Setting up Facebook
Now comes the really cool bit…
We are going to set up your Facebook page so that people who have “Liked” your music will be able to download your package instantly, but the new people will have to hit Like before they get access.
First thing you need to do is create two videos, the first one will welcome them into your musical world, tell them what they’re getting and then ask them to hit the Like button…and the second will thank then for Liking your page and tell them to click the link below to get your thing.
Watch this video to figure out the Facebook stuff…
So there you have it…
You’ve created the simple delivery process, now all you have to do is find people who have lots of Klout in your music scene and convince them to promote your thing.
By the way…”Klout” was a clue.
So far I’ve been showing you how to set this up using a Facebook page, but feel free to use the same process on your own site asking people to join your mailing list…it works just the same.
3 ways to find other sites to spread your freebie around…
This is a site that tracks how influential people are online based on a bunch of stats taken from social media interactions and stuff like that…
It’s an amazing tool because they have already created a Klout score for 100 million people so it’s kind of like a big giant research area to find out who can connect with lots of your potential fans quickly.
Watch the video below to see how I use Klout…
2. The biggest websites in the world
Klout is great but sometimes you need to dig a little bit deeper to uncover some more gold…
This process is not about one site in particular but a new way of thinking that goes like this:
- Visit the most popular sites in the world
- Find the most popular people on those sites who are talking to your potential fans
- Then email or call them to see if they would like to offer their people your freebie
So let’s try this with a couple of “King Kong” websites…
The websites below are among the most popular on the web which makes them perfect for the process outlined in the video:
- Amazon Authors
3. Your other interests
Finally I want you to make a big giant list of things you like to do outside of the music game.
This could be movies, sports or even monster trucks…put it all down on a piece of paper and make sure that you don’t drop food on it, because this is going to become a very crucial document!
Your fans don’t sit at home all day listening to the Ipod in a dark stinky room, they’re just like you and will usually have a bunch of other interests which lead them to sites totally unrelated to music.
So these sites also become a potential launch pad, and it will actually be easier to get their attention because they are not getting hammered by 100s of musicians everyday.
The reason I want you to start with you’re own interests is that your perfect fan is probably quite similar to you, so this is as good a place to start as any.
Let’s use ME as the guinea pig for a minute…I’m into this weird global treasure hunting game called Geocaching, so I might take my music to the Geocaching website and work out some kind of tie-in.
I’ll set up a real personal offer for them and chances are that the other Geocachers all around the world will subconsciously know I’m one of them and be more open to my free package.
Sure you’ll probably get your thing in-front of a few people who never listen to the kind of tunes you play but the cool thing about the music business is that fans are wild in their tastes, if you ask most people what they’re into the answer will usually be “all kinds of stuff…”
I think even if somebody did not especially like your style as a rule they would still download a package worth $25 just to get something free, and if your stuff really is cool you might even CONVERT THEM!
In any other industry you would never cross promote quite like this…
I mean if someone owned a Ferrari, you would not spend your time or money trying to sell them an old banger…but it’s not beyond belief to think that people who like rock music might also listen to the odd rap album once in a while so let’s give it a shot.
…this is a little off the wall but I hope it kind of makes sense.
You should now go back to the Klout method and the “biggest websites in the world” and uncover opportunities for a little cross promotion.
Remember that music sites get pitched by bands all the time but these other sites will probably not have come across this kind of offer before and may well be more open to what you have in mind.
Another potential source of new fans is other musicians who may also be open to spreading your thing around.
Although I often find it’s easier to convince them if you can give a little financial incentive or if you can promote something of theirs in return.
Getting on the radar before you ask them to promote you
Most of the time if you just randomly email someone you’re going to get a big fat silence and not hear a thing back.
The steps below are for those of you who want to go the extra mile and do a little ground work before you go in for the kill:
- Re-Tweet them
- Comment on their blog
- Send them an email thanking them for all their good work
- Add their site to a list of the best sites in your music scene and post it to your blog (Then email the site owner to let them know)
- Like there Facebook page then ”Like” and post comments on their updates
- After a while send them a friend request on Facebook and start interacting with what they have going on
- Offer them a guest post
- Interview them for your blog
The point of all this is so that you’re sort of “online friends” with this person before you ask for their help and they will recognize and feel good about hearing from you when you pitch your thing.
This is a great position to be in because it can be the basis for an ongoing promotion which turns into a regular source of new fans each month.
How to find their contact details
Here are 3 foolproof ways you can find the contact information of almost anyone you want to work with:
- Most of the time there will be a contact button at the top or bottom of the page but if you can’t find a link press “control+f” on your computer keyboard and search the page. (They may have put the contact information somewhere weird)
- Sign up to their email list. The messages will usually come from a email account that they check so you can just hit reply to the first message they send you.
- Search for the website on www.whois.net, this will often list the site owner and maybe provide a contact email. (After you run a search you may have to visit a link at the bottom of the page for full contact details)I should also mention that if you can find them on Facebook you can send a direct message through there. But if you do this too much Mr Mark Zuckerberg could get angry and ban your account. So I often find a better option is to look at their public Facebook page and check out the “About” info to see if you can find an email address.Here’s where you find that:
Your pitch email
You always want to keep your pitch as personal to your target as possible but to save a little time here is a sample email to get you going:
“Hey Bob, love your blog…
[personalize your message - mention something they have blogged about or tweeted recently. This will show that you care about what they’re doing and it’s not just a bulk email]
I wanted to have a word with you about setting up a special promotion to give say 200 of your readers free access to my latest album and the collectors package to go with it. The normal price is $25.
We’ve been working real hard on the record, DVD and all the other goodies so I hope your people will really appreciate the freebie. (Just my little way to thank you for spreading the word)
I know that you would only want to pass around stuff that you’re into yourself so I’ve set you up with a free copy to get started…
=> You can download the album yourself HERE
That’s my little idea, hope you love it.
P.S If you would like to go ahead with this I can provide a pre-written email, website banner and a bunch of other promo tools so that this won’t take up all your time.”
You want to let them know that this is special and that you’re not just giving it away to any Tom, Dick or Harry. I also suggest that you set up your package for sell on your own site so that you can show that others really do have to pay for what you’re giving them. (The fastest way to do this is with a simple PayPal “Buy Now” button)
After you send the pitch email, make sure you head over to Facebook or Twitter and let them know you sent them a message. This might give them a little push to look out for your thing.
As ever you should wait a couple of days and if you don’t hear back make sure that you send at least 1 follow up email or try to call them.
So that’s about it…
One massive lesson I want you to take away from this is that you don’t have to do all the marketing on your own. Each time you hear about a new music marketing tactic ask yourself if someone is already doing it and if you could convince them to let their audience know about your thing.
If you want to turn this into a complete “getting hits” engine just set up your package and then start connecting with 10 – 20 partners everyday. If you do this all year round you will have more hits than you ever need. Just another little example of how keeping it simple and making a commitment to one effective plan can build momentum and be all you need to get fans into your sales funnel.
Please let me know if yo have any questions and leave you comments and suggestions below…
Tags: Music Marketing Hustle
Chris Rockett is ‘The Man’ when it comes to actionable free content!