Wednesday, July 27, 2011

3 Video Tools You Can Use to Promote Your Mixtape

Qik: Qik is a mobile application that allows you to stream live video from your cell phone to the Internet. Users are able to upload videos to YouTube, Twitter and Facebook. Qik allows you to stream live video directly from your cellphone to the web. Qik is great for candid videos in the studio or interacting with friends. These types of candid videos are great for transparency and for really showcasing your personality, and they do not have to be long to make an impact. In fact I would not go over 2 minutes.

Mini-Documentary: Create a mini-documentary of the creation and promotion of your mixtape by including the following components:                                                                        
·         Mixtape music   
·         An Interview discussing your mixtape, music and background (can be shot in your neighborhood)                                                                                                                                   
·         Live performance from mixtape release party before, during and after)
Ustream: Ustream is typically used to broadcast and share live events. Ustream would be a good tool for sharing your live performances in real time. For example you could share a live performance from your mixtape listening party.

Music Marketing on Google+?!? Resistance is Futile!

Check out this article by Hypebot contributor Clyde Smith

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Introducing the "5 Questions" Interview Series: James Moore (#1)

I’d like to introduce to you the “5 Questions” interview series, in which I will be interviewing hip-hop influencers, indie music experts, social media strategists and prominent hip-hop artists asking them for tips and commentary on the marketing & promotion of hip-hop music. First up, in the “5 Questions” interview series is James Moore; author of the book “Your Band is a Virus”. Moore is well-versed on the indie music scene & though he focuses on bands, his advice is universal and relevant to hip-hop artists as well. Check out what James had to say about bios, video marketing & more!

What is the correct way to write an indie artist bio? The correct promotional language of an indie artist bio should be factual. I always suggest getting others to endorse you, and then include their quotes in your bio and press materials. For example, "The Source Magazine calls them the most impressive hip-hop act of the last 10 years" gives you instant credibility even if no one has heard of the publication. The more outside sources have to say about you, the better. Until you build up your press quotes, keep your bio factual and fairly minimal. It's also ok to mention famous artists in the context of your influences or "sounds like a cross between" references. 
What are some of the most creative viral/video marketing campaigns that you've come across? To be honest, a lot of artists & bands are going about it the wrong way, so I'm ALWAYS impressed when I see artists doing simple things like getting reviews, running successful campaigns on sites like, being creative with contests and sweepstakes on Wildfire (, thinking outside the box with creative music videos and creating incentives for their fans to get involved, such as giving away free unreleased tracks.
How important is the addition of viral/video marketing to an indie artist's music promotion/PR campaign? It should be one of the main components of any PR campaign. If there is nothing that is viral worthy about the artist, it's going to be very difficult for them to get known. It's important for artists to differentiate themselves, sometimes to the extreme, and video is a great opportunity to do that. As long as the video fits your sound & image and is unique, you could have a hit.
What are some tips for building an effective website? These days, you can either do it from scratch if you have those skills, or you can go with a service such as or, who make the process easy for you and charge a monthly fee to host your site. I've had good experiences with both companies. However you'll want to check out their templates and choose the one that's right for you. Don't add too many sections though! You want your website to frame your product, so to speak. Lead people toward the sale, even if it's a free download. Having a mailing list or newsletter is a must as well, and sign up options should be on multiple pages of your site. Also, you should be plugging your social network presence on multiple pages of your site. A blog with relevant content could be a big help too - not just content about your band, but other things you care about. This could help you in the search engines, especially if you go with a good blog services such as Wordpress or Blogger.
What is the proper way to approach music media professionals? It's a numbers game and it takes effort. Don't just contact a few websites and wait. You want to reach out to a ton of places. Try to contact individuals who writes reviews or features catering to your style, and be personable and polite. It's good practice to mention something you liked about one of their pieces, or engage them with a question about an artist that you both like. Be appreciative because no one is obligated to cover you. Offer a link back or cross-promotion especially if it's a smaller blog, podcast or website you are contacting. It's best to think of them as a fellow music lover who does what they do for similar reasons that you do what you do. I hope these suggestions lead you to more success!
For info on James Moore and his book “Your Band is A Virus” visit his website @
Thanks James!

Friday, July 15, 2011

How to Create a Social Media Plan To Promote Your Mixtape

  • Set measurable goals
  • Seek out online groups and communities that are relevant to your music and brand in general
  •  Identify key influencers in those groups and communities
  •  Based on your findings, create a content strategy
  •  After a content strategy is formed, allot a time frame to promote your mixtape & once that time period has ended.
  • Repeat and apply these steps toward creating and delivering content about your music and personal brand in general. Consistency, transparency and engaging content is key and remember that social media participation is a commitment.
So what should you say??? To help you brainstorm, I’ve included a few tweet examples from emerging Atlanta hip-hop artist Yung Booke below:   
If u keep #bands on u.. This is your anthem!!! GO DOWNLOAD IT NOW!! 5:47 PM Dec 3rd via Twitter for Android
Go download "Bands On Me" feat. @jfuturistic09 & MDC Nowww!!  
I used his tweets as an example, because they are engaging, consistent and in sync with his persona.
  • Engage in conversations with fans, followers and people that are interested in and or talking about your mixtape and music in general
  • Be a conversation starter: Facilitate conversations amongst fans, followers, contemporaries, and influencers

Thursday, July 14, 2011

How to Get The Source Magazine to Tell Your Story

Editorial Calendar Exp.
1.   Make sure that your story is newsworthy and interesting.
2.   Keep your media pitch short, simple and to the point.
3.   Make sure that your press releases and supporting materials are sent to the appropriate media contact.
4.   Make sure that you’re available for additional info.
5.   If an editor, writer, reporter or hip-hop blogger responds to your pitch, treat their questions and/or requests for additional info with urgency! (I cannot stress this enough)
6.  Target media outlets that cater specifically to your target audience.
7.   Become VERY familiar with the media outlets that you are targeting. Whether you’re targeting a print publication, hip-hop website or blog, know which section you would like to be featured in and find out the name and contact info of that direct editor, hip-hop blogger or writer. For example if you want one of your mixtape tracks to be featured on’s Bangers section, contact the Director of Digital Content.
8.   Utilize editorial calendars. Editorial calendars are lists that outline specific topics that print media outlets plan to cover within each issue of the year. For example, The Source magazine’s annual July issue is the Independent Artist/Label Package Issue. Editorial calendars are a great tool to utilize for planning which magazines & sections you want to pitch yourself too. (See blog post image)
9.  Always send an email first. Email is the preferred contact for mostly all hip-hop media professionals.       
10. Make sure your email subject line is appealing.
11. Cut and paste your mixtape/music press release, in addition to attaching it.
12. Keep note of your contact history with the editor, writer or hip-hop blogger. Make note of things such as, whether you made contact with them or not? Were they interested in your music and/or mixtape? Did they say when you should email or call again?

How To Get On Wikipedia

Check out this article by Hypebot contributor Clyde Smith:

How To Get Your Band On Wikipedia

My hip-hop readers can definitely pull from this.