It is not a new thing that every upcoming musician wants to BLOW (make it big) in the Nigerian music industry. A major question they ask at the beginning of their musical journey is how do I promote my music?
Since major record labels like Mavin, DMW,Kennis Music, YBNL,Chocolate city and Storm records that can manage, package and promote your songs will hardly get you signed, you will need to take up responsibility as your own music promoter.
Here are some simple tips that will help your career as an upcoming artist.
(1) Create a brand: From the moment you begin to record music to sell to an audience, you must understand that you have ceased to be just a person.
The audience sees you as a brand and all your work as product. As such, you must consciously build a brand identity and image that fits the brand of music you make and how you want to be oercieved as an artiste.
Adekunle Gold is an example of an artist who has created a consistent brand image that supports his fusion of contemporary highlife, juju and folk music.
(2) Make Good Songs:
Sorry I cannot teach you how to write a song. I believe you are reading this because you have the talent already to compose and record a good song. The type of song you do should be targeted to an audience with a good taste in music
(3) Attend shows for free and regularly
Most up-coming musicians here in Nigeria usually make the mistake of not going to an event, simply because they weren’t invited. Most will hold the excuse that they will pay little compare to the energy they will exhibit. As a new born fish in the Music Industry, you’ve to forget about money and focus on exposure. When exposure have been achieved, that’s when contracts and money starts rolling in. If there’s an event near you, make sure to attend. Meet the MC or the coordinator of the event, tell him or her of your interest to perform. The truth is; they will be glad to allow you perform, to liven up the place. In some cases, they might give you some money as a way of saying THANK YOU. In some cases, you might get nothing at all. It doesn’t matter, what matters is that you’re gaining a presence.
(4) Collaborate with other artists: In your early days as an artist, it is important to jump on as many songs as you can. Here’s why; every artist has a fan base that you can borrow from and working with them introduces your sound to a new set of people.
It also pushes your creativity and helps your development as an artist. Still, you have to be careful; some collaborations will do more harm than good and you must avoid them as much as possible.
In every other case, bless the song with a hook or a verse and spread your reach.
(5) USE SOCIAL MEDIA:
Open profiles on sites like Facebook, Twitter and MySpace which gives you the platform to interact with your fans. Update your social network profile regularly with interesting pictures and videos of you. Photos from an event you performed or a video of a studio recording session should do. You get not only fans from Nigeria but all over the world with these types of websites. Social networking site gives you an online following which is good for your music career. Do not underestimate the power of the internet in building your music career.
(6) Use your Family and Friends:
As an upcoming artiste, your family and friends are your first fan base, record label, A&R and managers.You see that uncle that always acts yuppy, share your new song with him and ask what he thinks. Share your work with your friends too and turn to them for support and advice in times of need.
(7) OFFER SOME Of YOUR SONGS FOR FREE DOWNLOADS And OTHER ON SALES ONLINE:
You want your songs to reach a wide audience and people generally love free music downloads. Upload like 2 of your songs to music sites like orjisblog.com.ng and promote your download links to your fans on the social networking sites
(8) Put your music on streaming platforms: One of the biggest misconceptions in Nigerian music is that artists don’t make money from streaming. The sycophants who sell this lie will tell you that your best chance is to hope for shows and endorsements.
Nigerian artists have made over millions of dollars from streaming songs online. Put your songs on all streaming platforms you can find. You probably won’t make as much as Davido, Wizkid and others from the jump but that kobo-kobo change can become a river of cash.
(9) Never lose your focus: As you begin to become more familiar with the music industry and all its frivolities, it is easy to get distracted.
Many careers have been cut short when the artist loses himself in the vices that creatives tend to indulge in. As an upcoming artiste, you should remember that everything you do is a function of your art and your career. Keep our eyes on the goal.
(10)HOW TO HANDLE CRITICISM AS AN UP-COMING MUSICIAN
To become a successful musician, you must be ready to handle critics and use them to your advantage. Behind every successful musician, there’s a critic. Don’t feel bad when you’re criticized. Instead, be open-minded and see if they are honest criticism or just trash spilled out of hate and envy. The truth still remain that you need them to succeed. The more haters you get, the more successful you’ll be. When haters come on you, one thing is certain, it improves your presence which means, more traffic and money.
If they make remark about you not being on key or beat, or something about your lyrics not being good. You have to look into them, to discover where to work more on yourself. Always listen to constructive criticism, they are just a way of pointing out your flaws and making you a better musician. To become a successful musician, handle critics in a mature way.
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