(Get national sales without a distributor. Also addresses Internet sales and distribution)
by Kenny Love
Having coverage in the distribution areas means already having pre-arranged regional or national distribution. If for any reason you cannot get distribution, a second alternative is to have a toll-free automated voice mail number in your liner notes on your CD jacket.
This number should also be included on all promotional paperwork that the DJ's or anyone else receives so that it can be given out to anyone who wants to get a copy or learn more about you after hearing your recording on the air. Also, be sure to place it on your business cards, folders, and any other elements of your press kits.
This voice mail can further sell your product by hyping it, giving special prices or deals, alerting your potential fans to upcoming shows, contests, giveaways, or anything else related to your recording. And, make sure on your outgoing message, you give the price, shipping costs, and your address on where your fans should send their payment.
You should also look into getting set up with credit card arrangements through merchant services that will handle it for you for a small monthly fee or percentage. You will also want to approach the hundreds of Internet music and book stores that carry music to sell your product for you.
I mean, for the first time ever in the history of the music industry, you can compete with the major acts in regard to sales and, literally, sell millions of product online and document it.
In fact, if you are a die-hard "indie" with limited product, and even more limited funds, this set-up is the only way to quickly go national. Also, if you have your own web site, make sure its address is also listed in your product's liner notes. With your own site, and others selling for you, you can move tons more product in half the time while selling at both retail and wholesale levels.
To reach club DJ's in great numbers, you should approach record pools. Record pools are centralized organizations of member disc jockeys that pay a fee in order to obtain your record to "break" it in their club for you on the street level.
The jocks chart your recording according to club response for a certain time period, say 30 days. After that time, they turn their reports into the pool, which puts the result in their computer. The computer then calculates your results which they provide to you.
This documentation is vital information that you can use to influence radio, press, larger record labels, and many other industry contacts. The pools and their member jocks are extremely influential, are all across the country and you provide them with a certain quantity of recordings.
You can do a search online to find record pools. They are even broken down into music formats, how many copies of your recording they will require, contact address, personnel, etc. In fact, this is probably the fastest way to get your recording moving, and should be the first part of your marketing phase, even before sending it to radio.
It DEFINITELY is a much faster process than radio airplay and one that should be actively and aggressively explored. And most times, a street buzz will get radio moving a lot faster. Again, make sure distribution is set up in one of the two previously mentioned methods.
Since releasing his initial recording, Kenny Love, a former Music Education Major, has had the rare opportunity to work in many varied aspects of the music industry; recording artist, producer, author, journalist, promoter, booking agent, & public relations specialist. He has also appeared in television, radio, & print interviews as a music business consultant. His new report is titled, "Alternative Routes to Recording Success."