Direct marketing is the process of bypassing intermediaries to communicate directly with fans, build awareness, and generate sales. Here are ten tips that can help you create music marketing content that sells.
Direct marketing is the process of bypassing intermediaries to communicate directly with fans, build awareness, and generate sales. Emailing tour dates, texting announcements about contests, and posting website links to your fund raisers are all direct marketing methods. Even phoning reminders about your show and mailing postcards about your record release are methods of direct marketing. In all cases, the most important ingredient needed to ensure success is persuasive content. As they say, “Content is king.” Here are ten tips that can help you create music marketing content that sells.
1. Say the most important things first
The first line of any correspondence is always the most important and establishes whether your intended audience will even pay attention. Begin your marketing messages by stating who you are, then announce the most compelling service/feature/event you are promoting. Finding an interesting hook or question that gets your target customers’ attention and draws them in is a good approach to sparking interest in your message.
2. Provide detailed information
You will hold your customers’ interest and help them decide to do business with you (i.e., donate to your campaign, come out to your show, buy your new CD, etc.) by highlighting your key selling points. It’s not enough to explain where you are playing and when: tell your audience “why” they should get in their car and come to your show. In other words, explain what’s in it for them.
3. Use attractive graphics
If the direct marketing method you’re using calls for it, use an attractive graphic that shows off your product or service, or that otherwise intrigues the viewer. Your album cover, your beautiful studio, a great live shot, or your fans beating each other up in the mosh pit are all possibilities. Whatever you use, just be sure your graphic matches your headline and promotion.
4. Include your logo and slogan
Whenever possible, include your band logo and slogan (sometimes called a “tagline”) at the bottom or end of your correspondence. Doing this can help build brand image and increase your brand recognition, which are known to lead to repeated sales.
5. Include a call to action
In any marketing communication, get your fans to act by including a polite command (aka “call to action”). For instance: “To RSVP for the show and exclusive after-party, be sure to contact www.example.com/JulyParty while tickets last.” Remember the whole purpose of direct marketing is to get your fans to do something. Make it clear what it is you want them to do.
6. Use a marketing information code
Be sure to monitor the success of your direct marketing campaign by including a unique reference code. For instance, the special URL in the example above ending in “JulyParty” (www.example.com/JulyParty) makes tracking simple, since the web page it links to is built specifically for the event. By adding Google Analytics to the page, you’ll know precisely how many people responded to your message. You can take this a step further and test the effectiveness of different media – an email, postcard, or phone message, for example – by creating three identical web pages with unique URLs and track each.
7. Keep it simple
Remember the acronym KISS (Keep It Simple, Stupid) when laying out your designs, crafting telephone scripts, or writing fund raiser pitches. The more you say, or the more cluttered a correspondence appears or sounds, the more confused people will get. Confusion equals fewer responses.
8. Use trigger words
Craft your correspondences using words that resonate positively with your target audience. Avoid all negative words! When calling someone, such as a club booker, don’t start with “sorry to bother you,” because you’re already associating your name with the word “bother.” Instead, use words that push their buttons like “experienced,” “confident,” or “connected.” Just be sure to tell the truth.
9. Use the right colors and fonts
Use colors and fonts that are consistent with the brand image (mood, vibe, and attitude) you’d like to project onto your fans – no matter if you’re choosing envelopes, designing postcards, or building web pages. The stronger you project what you stand for, the more likely you’ll win over loyal fans.
10. Adapt to each customer
And finally, read classic sales books like Zig Ziglar’s Secrets of Closing the Sale and remember to: “Think and act like the customer.” For instance, when calling someone who’s upbeat, adopt a high-energy personality. When calling someone who’s low-key, adopt a mellow personality. When responding to emails and texts, strive to use the exact same tone and words that the sender used. This helps to win over fans and ultimately make sales. Says Robert Bly in The Copywriter’s Handbook, as long as you are genuine, “Mirroring your customer establishes trust.”
A renowned drummer, teacher, consultant, and Disc Makers contributor, Bobby Borg is the author of Music Marketing For The DIY Musician: Creating and Executing a Plan of Attack On A Limited Budget (September 2014, Hal Leonard). The book is available on the Hal Leonard website, Amazon.com, or at BobbyBorg.com.
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