Updated: Dec 16, 2021
Independent musicians are always looking to establish a fan base and promote their original songs/tracks. In order to do this, they must first become familiar with branding and marketing.
This is because in order for the business to grow, establishing the specific areas within your business that include things such as color schemes, logos, and consistent posts across social media platforms are important when making music your full-time career.
Another aspect of marketing your music that should be a top priority is to get yourself an established email list set up. This is totally owned by you and gives you direct contact with your fanbase, so that you can keep your audience up-to-date with upcoming gigs or live performances, or when new music is going to be launched.
Basically, the end goal for musicians is to create a solid fan base that you (the musician) can keep in touch with on a regular basis so that they (the fans) know what you’re up to.
This helps you as an artist because you are able to keep track of your fans by monitoring the lists. It also allows you to reach out to them easily. There are free resources online you can use to do this, but this can also become a lot of work on your part that you might not have the time (or expertise) to do.
Musicians tend to want to focus on their craft – making and performing music – and not with all that goes along with it.
With digital platforms in the online world becoming more of a means to distribute and get noticed, there are multiple opportunities with companies that will allow music submissions by independent music artists. Many of these can take the guesswork out of how to get your music shared and noticed, without you having to do much of the leg work.
Music Submission Software
Utilizing online music submission software is a way to get your music directly in the thick of things. This site, in particular, called Share Pro, will immediately allow your original music submission to be viewed within a 48-hour window and get back to you if they are going to share your music on their platforms, maybe even work with you or offer a record deal.
It’s a fast-track way of getting your music heard by the professionals and can be helpful when you want some feedback to see if your music can truly make “the cut.”
If you’re confident that your music is mixed and mastered and ready for the big leagues, this is a great step for you to take as a musician – you never know who might be looking for your specific sound.
Music Licensing Companies
A music licensing company is ultimately one of the best platforms for you to submit your music to, and Marmoset is a great licensing company to start with that really cares about giving indie artists new opportunities.
The music licensing process is taken care of by the company, so you don’t have to worry about all of the legalities, allowing you to be more focused on making the music rather than selling it.
The company not only accepts your original music and tracks, but they have a wide range of networks that have already utilized their services to find music. This means that you don’t have to do any networking or submitting directly to professionals, since the consensus is that many music supervisors, filmmakers, or other creatives don’t tend to “try out” new music if they are unfamiliar.
But, when a musician is accepted and part of a bigger library of tracks that creatives already go to find their perfect fit, your chances of being noticed (even on a larger platform) are much better. Plus, when your music is chosen there is an even bigger chance that you may be contacted from that point forward to produce more music for specific projects.
Believe it or not, there are many music-centered blogs and websites out there that want your music to promote. One of the main reasons for this is that a lot of times with independent musicians you want your music to be heard in any capacity. There are also no royalty fees necessary as long as your music is copyrighted.
There are multiple music blogs like Indiepulse and Emerging Indie Bands blogs and articles where you can submit to have your music featured. They tend to prefer it to be unsigned and unknown, so newer and emerging music artists should definitely consider this route.
Submitting Directly to Record Labels
This may now seem almost like a very old-school way of doing things, but this is always an option as a musician. You would simply send out demos of your music to multiple record labels through the mail and/or email.
This method can be a long, uphill battle, and many times your music probably won’t even be listened to (or might be listened to by a lowly intern who doesn’t push it up the chain of command).
One thing you should keep in mind if you submit directly to a record label is that many of them do not accept any unsolicited materials. This can mean two different things: the main one being that the record label themselves is not inviting you to send – which means, unless you were asked to send a demo, don’t do it.
The second thing is basically almost the same as the first – you have to have had some sort of business association with the record label in order for them to accept your music submission.
However you decide to submit your music is up to you, but the insight you gain here is pointing to the idea that as an independent musician, you need to be sure to network and establish relations within the industry as much as possible. There are some easier and more difficult ways to do so, depending on how hard you want to work for it.
After creating the music you’re wanting to share with the public, your next priority should be marketing that music and gaining more visibility. Once you can start establishing relations with others in the business and they start to approach you for new music demos, then you have a shot at an actual record label.