5 Ways to Give Back Through Music

Music can be restorative, empowering, therapeutic; these are indisputable, time-tested truths. As a musician, you’ve got the power to bring those benefits to anyone who’ll listen — and you can amplify those effects through charitable organizations.

Whether it’s volunteering your skills, teaching kids, leading a workshop, or donating funds raised through special shows, your contribution — big or small — could make a huge impact. We’ve rounded up five music-centric organizations that welcome help year-round; read on to learn more about their efforts and how you can give back through music.

Agni5 Ways to Give Back Through Music
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3 Tips to Protect Your Music if SoundCloud Goes Bust

You may have heard the news concerning SoundCloud’s future. No one can see into the future, but what if SoundCloud does go away? What will happen to your music? How about your fans? Where will they go? IS IT TIME TO FREAK OUT YET?!!!!! Well, no. But, also, kind of yes.

Regardless of what actually happens to SoundCloud, this should be a moment of awakening for artists of all types. There are a few actions you can take – right…dang….now – to protect your music and your digital relationships with fans in uncertain times like these. And yes, before we go any further, let’s address the elephant in the room:

Is ReverbNation a good replacement for SoundCloud?

Jay3 Tips to Protect Your Music if SoundCloud Goes Bust
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4 Tips to Personalize Your Social Media Promotion

When you’re marketing your music on social media, it can be tempting to use the formal, corporate voice we’re used to seeing in advertising, but that isn’t necessarily the best way to connect with your loyal and prospective fans. Using a more modern and personable voice can help humanize your advertising, making it feel less like a sales pitch and more like a friend offering something that will actually make life better.

Below, we’ve outlined a few tips to keep your social media promotion personable and unique to your own voice. However, bear in mind that it is possible to go too far in trying to be personal — you don’t want a tweet to go viral for the wrong reasons. Keep it real, but always keep it professional.

Rebecca4 Tips to Personalize Your Social Media Promotion
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How to Avoid Burnout as a Musician

As I write this, I’m currently facing my own version of burnout. It’s Friday afternoon and it’s been an especially long week of fielding emails, putting out fires, managing mini-crises, and trying to find time to actually build my business and look to the future. Did I mention also working in three miles of walking my dog each day, yoga, trying to eat right, and really, really, wanting to catch up on Bates Motel if I could just find the time to sit down, relax, and get my mind to stop racing?

We live in a society that is all about the now, while working in an industry that romanticizes long hours, sleepless nights, and a work schedule that never quits. We are constantly told that we need to be on call 24/7, and that there is always someone else ready to take our spot, so we’d better answer that email, take that gig, make that call, and play that show – and we’d better do it all right now. Because if we dare hesitate, there is someone right around the corner who will gladly snatch the opportunity from us.

DaveHow to Avoid Burnout as a Musician
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5 Guerrilla Marketing Tactics for Your Next Album Release

Here’s a sad story you may be all too familiar with if you’ve been trying to make it in the music world for a while:

Band works for months (or maybe even years) writing, rehearsing, and playing their songs at venues around town. Band meticulously records their debut album, books a release party at the best local venue they can find, and throws up some Facebook statuses and colorful posters around town up to promote the show. Band brings 45 people to a venue with a 300-person capacity. Band is sad. Band is also disappointed to find that none of the 391 blogs they sent emails to over the past three months wanted to review or even mention the new release they’ve worked so hard on.

With a constant cacophony of distractions, getting the world to care about the music you release can be a massively challenging endeavor. Conventional ways of getting the word out are proving to be fruitless even for bands on labels that can sell out shows.

The fact is, the music industry is more competitive than ever, and if you want any hope of getting people to care, you’ve got to be unique. Try these five guerrilla marketing tactics to help make your next album release more effective.

Rebecca5 Guerrilla Marketing Tactics for Your Next Album Release
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How to Make Your Band Website Less Boring

In our fast-paced, competitive industry, there’s no room for a boring website. (Or worse—no website at all!) With the advent of social media, it can be easy to forget just how important having this central hub really is—a place to store your music, videos, bio, press photos, and tour dates, all in one neat little package for your fans and potential industry partners.

But neglect your website and you neglect your career. So here are some tips on how to make your band website less boring. 

DaveHow to Make Your Band Website Less Boring
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Copywriting Tips for Musicians

According to the late, great Nora Ephron, “Everything is copy.” As a writer, I love that; as a sometimes copywriter, I know it’s true. The phrase, which is also the title of a documentary about Ephron’s life, means that anything and everything in life is up for grabs to be written about. But I prefer to interpret it as everything that’s written needs to be as effective as copy.

DaveCopywriting Tips for Musicians
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How to Use Direct-Response Marketing to Get People to Buy Your Music

At this point in your career, you probably already know that you can’t constantly push your music and expect a powerful, positive response. You have to have a finely tuned mix of messages and content to keep your fans engaged. But there comes a time in every musician’s life/album release/merch launch/etc. when you need to create a strategy for promoting your wares.

Enter direct-response marketing. Basically, it does what its name claims: it provides a direct response to a specific command or prompt. This can be especially useful if you’re testing out a new sound, style, or even something as simple as a logo. In fact, you probably already use direct-response marketing without realizing it by asking your fans, “What do you think?”

But it’s time to take that to the next level and figure out how to use direct-response marketing to refine your messaging, particularly in the place where you’re probably doing the bulk of your advertising: social media.

How is direct-response marketing different from all other marketing?

DaveHow to Use Direct-Response Marketing to Get People to Buy Your Music
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