So a lot of people are trying to learn new skills during the quarantine. This is obviously important since we all have a little more free time and figuring out a way forward is going to be important for anyone trying to meaningfully grow as we make our way through this. Well, I wanted to talk about why the new skill you should be learning is Facebook and Instagram ads.
Here’s a little something to consider – the slow roll back that we are going to see around the world in the next few weeks. It seems that a lot of countries are going to start easing up restrictions, at least for smaller gatherings starting in May. This is great because I think a lot of us are really frustrated being cooped up at home. But don’t think that things are going to be returning to normal. I don’t know if we are going to be having shows for a little while – but there are some things you should be planning as we gear up for the rollback. Continue reading
So we’re a few weeks into this quarantine thing. It’s a weird time and I still think none of us is too sure what we are supposed to be doing. It’s really hard to figure out the next steps when you are in a situation that none of us has ever been in before. We don’t even know the long term ramifications. Is live music just… gonna go away for a few years? Will this negatively impact physical sales in the long term? How is tour scheduling going to look in a post coronavirus age? These are all very legitimate questions that we have to ask ourselves and that we are going to struggle with. I wanted to give some insiders insight to what I’ve seen for the impact of coronavirus on manufacturing, booking shows, signing record deals and long term planning for your band. Continue reading
Stuff To Do In a Quarantine
We are entering week three of what will forever be known as The Quarantine. It’s fucking weird man. There’s a sort of insane fear that we are all living under and I think none of us really know how it’s going to go from here other than that – it can’t continue like this without people starting to go well and truly crazy. As we adjust to quarantine life I wanted to talk about several key non-musical activities you can be doing to help grow your band that are even quarantine friendly! It’s going to be important to stay busy in the next few weeks so I wanted to outline how giveaways, trying your hand at music journalism, engaging with people directly on social media and learning new skills can really help push your band forward in what is a trying time for everyone in the world.
4. How Giveaways Can Help!
Right now people are REALLY bored and they are looking for just about anything to do. One thing that you can do which is going to get a lot more eyeballs on your band and get the ball rolling a little bit more is going to be running giveaways for your band. This can be anything from just posting on your Facebook that you’d like to giveaway a few LPs to doing something more in-depth. My favorite is to find 3-4 other bands you’re friends with, each put an LP into the pool for a giveaway and then direct everyone to the same landing page. This means that everyone is borrowing from everyone else’s fan bases and we are maximizing our ability to grow our respective lists. Who wouldn’t want something like that?
3. Why Not Try Music Journalism?
If you start doing stuff as a music journalist now you are going to get access to people. By engaging in music journalism you are going to have the chance to interview all manner of musicians who are doing more interviews than ever because again – they are BORED. You need to appreciate this and take advantage of it as much as possible. The people who engage in music journalism are able to make a ton of friends, not just with bands too. It’s a great way to do favors for managers or booking agents in a way that isn’t corny. Instead, you are offering something people are genuinely grateful for (Press coverage) and not asking for anything in return – just improving your general standing.
2. Engage Now More Than Ever!
Again – as a result of people being at home and bored it means that now more than ever you can engage with people at scale and in a meaningful way. People who might never have spoken to you before are a lot more likely to open up in the DM’s. Why? Because they have nothing else to do and we are all in this together. People are showing each other a level of compassion that’s really encouraging to see and means that if you want to establish relationships in a way that isn’t trying to take advantage of people then now is a great time to do it. This is the moment where you can really make friends and show your compassion to others. Everyone needs a shoulder to cry on right now so start trying to connect a little bit harder.
1. New Skills To Tackle
This one plays on your newfound free time. With all that time you would be going to the bar or out to eat or whatever – why not focus on learning a new skill while in quarantine? There are so many to learn. I personally am studying SEO and German both skills that I think would really help my career in the long run. Other people I see are studying Facebook ads, photo editing or business. There’s so much you can teach yourself just by buying a few books or watching some YouTube videos. Make a point of spending an hour a day on self-education and improvement – I think it will lead to some very real personal growth that you are going to be grateful for in the long run!
Point being – each of these points above can seriously help your band – so dig in, fall in love and educate yourself!
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Matt Bacon is a consultant, A&R man, and journalist specializing in the world of heavy metal. Having worked with everyone from Glam Rock icon Phil Collen of Def Leppard, to post Black Metal titans Alcest, by way of legendary thrashers Exhorder as well as labels including Prophecy Productions and Ripple Music, he has dedicated his life to helping young bands develop. Having started his own blog at the age of 14 he views his career in artist development as ‘a hobby that got out of hand’. In 2015 he formed Dropout Media in order to better support the artists he loves. We sit here now, years later with countless tours booked, records released and deals signed, and loving every minute of it.
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Now that we are a few weeks into the madness of this Coronavirus thing I wanted to document a few thoughts I have had about the whole content creation situation in the face of the coronavirus. There are a lot of interesting layers here and I think it’s too early for anyone to claim to have authoritative answers. That being said I think I have a pretty clear idea of what’s starting to shape up as content that makes sense vs stuff that doesn’t seem to be as effective. Obviously this will shift as we become more aware of the scope of this whole thing but it’s an interesting time in human history right now, so let’s take a moment to look at some of the content strategies that are coming into play, including stuff like content vs reach, the relative inefficacy of doing live sets, content ideas that do seem to be working and of course what you can be doing to help grow your band while we go through this.
We are living through a very scary time right now with Coronavirus. There are things happening now that none of us have seen in our lifetimes. Things that we never expected to have happened. It’s a strange world and I get the impression that it might get a lot stranger in the next few weeks. All this to say – there are things your ban should be doing now even if you are self quarantined. And believe me, I know how weird it is, but fear isn’t going to help us – we need to keep ourselves busy and moving forward. If you are looking for an easy list of free services you can use to help propel your band forward go here: https://dropoutmedia.net/free-offers-to-musicians-during-the-coranavirus-crisis/ Otherwise – I wanted to dig into why now is a great time to be a band because of greater access to journalists, cheaper ads, greater attention focused on social now and of course – monumental opportunity to help the community. Continue reading
I get asked all the time, “Why does my social media suck?” Why don’t people engage with what I have to say?’ It seems to me that a lot of people run into similar issues so I wanted to break down some of the core mistakes bands are making when it comes to optimizing their socials. I’m not going to be talking about high-level music marketing concepts nor in-depth engagement strategies but rather just the basic stuff that people seem to be dropping the ball on regularly. So let’s dig into this and talk about the importance of posting regularly, formatting stuff properly, creating interesting content worth engaging in and then the importance of engaging. Continue reading
So something that is key for anyone trying to make it in the underground and get to be more active is to just go out and do stuff. This is a really crucial point that people seem to routinely miss out on – is the simple fact that if you want to grow in the scene you just have to do stuff. However, if you start making a point of doing stuff within the underground then it is eventually going to start to pay off and as it increasingly pays off – guess what? You are going to wind up with better and better opportunities – it’s the flywheel effect. So in this article, I wanted to talk about ways to get the ball rolling for anyone seeking to become a tour manager, merch person or touring sound guy. All of these will take time to work out for you but I’ve seen them work countless times over the years. Continue reading
I haven’t done an in-depth article about touring here in a while and it seems to be something that a lot of you are interested in so I wanted to make a point of going deep on it with you cats. Particularly, I wanted to talk about the eternal question of, ‘Should we go on tour with another band?’ This is a tricky one with acts on the DIY level. The question of course, is built around how this impacts the overall experience, the booking of the tour, how the promoters will want to deal with it and of course what the financial side of things will look like. Definitely a tricky question – so let’s go deep and investigate what it can mean for a DIY band. Continue reading
There’s a lot of you out there in bands who are not creating nearly enough video content. In fact, many of you band folks aren’t creating video content at all – and that’s a huge problem. I wanted to use this article as a quick look into why video content matters, the types of video content you can create, how to create it and of course what you can do to monetize it. If you have these core elements in mind then I think it will rapidly all fall together for you to be able to push your brand to the next level, get more fans and open more doors for your band. I mean just look at my #baconsbits video series on Instagram – video opens all manner of doors.