MARKETING YOURSELF , NOT JUST YOUR MUSIC A guide for using a PR campaign to market your release with publicist extraordinaire Eric Alper
BY MANUS HOPKINS
So , you ’ ve recorded an album , an EP , a single — whatever it may be . You want to release it , but you want people to hear it and better yet , pay attention to it . But how will you do that with the eye-popping number of songs being uploaded to listening platforms like Spotify every single day ? You may have great music , it may be professionally recorded , mixed , and mastered , and you may have taken care of all the extra material to go around it , like highquality photos , video content , etc ., but how can you be sure your music won ’ t just be lost in the ether , buried in a surplus of endless content , checked out once or twice by friends and family to be polite , and never to be chanced upon by any potential fan , manager , label , or anyone else ?
It may be time to hire a publicist . And , lucky for you , NWC and Canadian Musician were recently joined for a webinar on the topic of entertainment marketing by none
10 CANADIAN MUSICIAN other than Eric Alper , one of Canada ’ s bestknown and fastest-replying music publicists . Here are some tips from Alper on how to decide if a publicist is something you need , and what you have to consider when marketing a release .
These responses have been edited for length and clarity .
Put Yourself in a Fan ’ s Shoes Alper : I think what any artist has to realize is that nobody cares about you . And rightfully so — 150,000 songs are being uploaded to Spotify for new music Friday , and there ’ s over 90,000 that are being uploaded each and every single day . So , nobody cares , and rightfully so . So , what it really comes down to is , why should Canadian Musician magazine , why should the daily newspapers , why should the radio stations , why should the blogs , why should anybody write about you ? And what it really comes down to is your story . Your single has very little to do with the actual success of you as an artist .
If you go back and take off your musician hat or your corporate hat , or your wherever hat , and you just think of yourself as a music fan , chances are you probably read or saw something about your favorite artists growing up or as a teenager , more than you heard the music . I grew up reading , not only Canadian Musician magazine , but NME and Mojo and Q and Rolling Stone and Spin , way , way more than I actually sat down and listened to the music . But what it enticed me to do was to think about the music world as storytelling . Why you ? What ’ s your song about ? What happened in your life that has to do with you writing that song ? Who is on the record ? How did you meet that person ? Tell me about your guitar . Tell me about the first time that you got a set of drums . Tell me about what the song is actually about to connect , not only with your fanbase , but the rest of the world . You are all essentially creating a product or