The Secret To Getting Signed To A Record Label

I really hate that I had to give this article that title, but I had to get your attention.  I just have to spread the truth.  The secret to getting signed does not exist because there is no secret.  There, I said it and I meant it.  There is no special secret.  It is all about the numbers.  You just have to get enough people listening to your music at roughly the same time, and those people have to like, talk, share and buy your music.  There is no secret.  You can either do it by yourself, or you can find someone with enough power, money or time to do it for you.  It doesn't have to be a label; it can be any person or organization that can get the job done.  There is no secret formula.  All you need is talent, hard work, and most importantly, intelligence.


So What Should I Do?


Well, I could run off a whole list of ideas that you could try, but that would not help you very much because you can get that information anywhere.  Just because someone gives you ideas does not mean that those ideas will work for you.  The purpose of this article is not to give you a list to memorize, but to increase your intellect and way of thinking.


You should sit down in a quiet room and think to yourself, ďWhat is it that I do well?Ē  For example, if you do not have a very large budget, donít plan to give out thousands of free CDs.  If you do not have access to a computer, donít plan to take over the internet with advertising.  Find out what it is that you can do well and do it as much as possible.  Always think of how your efforts can make the biggest imprint on your fans.  


Donít Be Afraid to Network Big!


That means that networking to your local radio stations and PR people are fine, but donít be afraid to go after some big names. Be daring!  Donít sell yourself short!  Try to skip straight to the top and get the attention of some big names.  You may not get their attention immediately, but in time you may get lucky.  If you keep trying they may see that you are serious.  


Be Professional!


Please be professional.  When you get a chance to meet with people that can further your career; be professional.  Tell them exactly what it is that you want, how it can benefit them and how it will benefit you.  Donít be afraid to believe that you are worth their time.  Be prepared to give them a sample of your talent if they ask.  


Be Creative!


Try to be creative in all your promotion ventures.  You have to catch the eye of the VIP people as well as your fans.  Always think to yourself, ďHow can I put my own unique spin on this?Ē You must stand out and build a brand that is yours and yours alone.  Make them want to know what is going on in your world.  


Spend Money!


You have to spend money.  Spend is wisely but spend it none the less.  You canít be cheap in this business or you will get cheap return.  You cannot get there for free.  Invest in something that will get you closer to your goal and get you noticed, rather it be locally or nationally.  Get noticed!     


Have Persistence!


Be persistent!  You have to be determined to be noticed for your talent.  You may have to knock on some doors five times.  You may have to go back to the drawing board several times.  You may have to work many hours, but you must out work the competition and out think your obstacles.


Have Good Music.


There is nothing to say about that. That is obvious.  

"By Kelvin Butler"

Kelvin Butler is the author of this blog. He also is part owner of KBJ Records.com, a website that caters to the working class musician by offering affordable services in cd duplication, cd mastering, graphic design and more. Learn about his very affordable offers at www.kbjrecords.com

Should You Give Away Your Demo CDs For Free?

There has been a lot of discussion over this issue but I donít know why.  It is a no brainer.  Of course you should give your demo CDs away for free and here is why.  The explanation can be summed up into three words:  Hear, Like, and Buy.  These three steps have to be accomplished in this order or you will not sell very many CDs.  You cannot skip any of these steps because it wonít work if you do.  If you really stop and think about it, you will see that most professional mainstream artists are promoted using this model. 

#1 HEAR

First, letís discuss the first step.  People have to hear your music.  People will not buy music that they have not heard.  I donít care how cute you are, how well you speak, or how interesting you may be; not very many people are going to buy music that they have not heard.  This is why you have to get a lot of people listening to your music at the same time.  The more people that listen to your music, the better the chances you have of getting a lot of people liking your music.

#2 LIKE

Next, now that people have heard your music, some of them have to like it as well.  Not everyone will like it but some of them will.  This is why it is imperative that you get as many people to listen to your music as possible because the more people that listen, the more people that like. Once you have got a large amount of people liking your music, you can now concentrate on getting them to buy your music.  Remember; donít waste time trying to get all of the people who heard your music to buy, instead spend time persuading those that like your music to buy.  You will have a better chance at getting those whom already like your music to buy it from you then you will those who have only simply heard  it.

#3 BUY

Lastly, you need people to buy your music.  Now, all you have to do is make sure you have the music available for sale.  Make sure that you let all of your fans know where and how to purchase your music.  Make sure that you remind them over and over again.  Donít be annoying, but donít be afraid to remind people about purchasing your music.

Why CDs?  Canít I Just Give Away Downloads?

Yes you can give away downloads but in my opinion, it will not work as well.  You need quality listeners, not fly by night listeners.  When you offer a download for free, a person may download it but the song stays tucked away on their hard drives, never to be heard from or shared again.  It is too much trouble for them to download a song, find a blank disc, burn the song to a disc, and then take it out into the world.  A CD can easily impact other listeners because your fans will play it in their cars and home stereo systems.  People will remember your name easily because it is printed on the CD and they may glace past your name as they flip through their CD booklets.  One CD can affect many.  The only problem with free CD promotion is that you have to give out a large number of CDs in order to make a real impact but in order to go where many canít, you must be willing to do what many wonít.


"By Kelvin Butler"  Kelvin Butler is the author of this blog.  He also is part owner of KBJ Records.com, a website that caters to the working class musician by offering affordable services in cd duplication, cd mastering, graphic design and more.  Learn about his very affordable cd duplication offers at http://kbjrecords.com/cd_slam_sale_54.html

Image is CD Duplication

When it comes to CD duplication, image is everything. I am not saying that your CD has to look like Universal Records distributed it, but there should be some level of professionalism used when designing the graphics. Most artists plan to duplicate their demos and give them away to the public free of charge. Artists that give free Cd's away experience a loss of income in exchange for advertising their music, and therefore will try to spend as little as possible when manufacturing the discs.

When you are giving away music for free it would be wise to find a cheap audio cd duplication service when manufacturing the discs, but one must not compromise the quality of the appearance of the disc in the process. When people first pick up your CD, the first thing that will make an impression on them is the way your CD looks. Money should not be the only factor that concerns you when it comes to your music.

I understand that the most important factor to consider is the way your music sounds. It is true that the greatest weight of judgement by listeners will lie on the way your music sounds, but if you are an experienced unsigned artist like myself, you will know that most people who receive a CD from an unsigned artist will already expect he or she not to sound professional. You already have one strike against you just for being an unsigned artist. Appearance is a strike that you can do something about so don't receive this pre-mature strike against yourself. Do a good audio cd duplication job.

How do I achieve good graphics?

First of all, don't write on your Cd's. The days of writing on your Cd's with a sharpie marker are over. Secondly, you should find a company that provides a cheap cd duplication service, and will duplicate and print graphics directly on the surface of your CD at an affordable price ($0.80 per disc). Finally, you should make sure that the company uses high quality discs. You shouldn't search for the cheapest price because those with the cheapest prices will likely use the cheapest discs that may scratch easily. One day someone will ask you if they can purchase one of your demos, and you will not want to sell them a cheap disc that will scratch easily.

What are good graphics?

Good graphics could be anything that your heart desires, however I do recommend that your graphics be eye catching. Do not be afraid to use color with your graphics. It has been proven that color attracts people. Good Luck! 

"By Kelvin Butler"