How to Manage Your Marketing – The Contact Management System

Artists MBA, Professional ProgramMarketing is creating an environment in which people feel comfortable enough to buy from you,  over and over again.

Sounds like a great idea, right? But what exactly does that mean in terms of day to day actions?  And how do you systematize creating that environment?

Does this sound familiar?

  • You’ve got a pile of business cards on your desk, but you don’t really know what to do with them.
  • Picking up the phone to make marketing calls is terrifying because you don’t really know who to call or what to say when you get them on the phone
  • You know you promised somebody something, but don’t remember who or what or when
  • A prospective customer/client/fan tells you to call back in three months and you promise to, but you know you won’t remember

These are all symptoms of a poor contact management system (or CRM – Customer Relations Management System)!  There’s nothing wrong with you, it’s the system that is lacking!

In this class you’ll learn:

  • Why you need a Contact Management System (and why your memory isn’t enough!)
  • The Key Components of an effective Contact Management System
  • How your Contact Management System feeds into and energizes your larger Marketing Plan
  • A review of some of the 3rd party apps out there and how to choose the right one for you

Additional Resources for this Class:

Prerequisite Class:

Listen to the Class:

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Enroll in the Artists Marketing & Business Academy Foundation Program
to access this class today ($5 for first 10 days/$27 per month Tuition):

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Procrastination is Keeping Me Waiting

Artists MBA, Professional ProgramOne of the most frequently asked question in my Ask Coach Debra calls is how to deal with procrastination. Very often we know what we need to do.  And yet somehow, we can’t get ourselves to sit down and do it!

All of the Time Management structures and systems you’ve learned to create in the Time Management and Project Management Classes will be impossible to implement if you don’t figure out how to overcome procrastination.

Procrastination is opportunity’s assassin.  ~Victor Kiam

In this class you’ll discover:

  • What is procrastination, really, and what causes it?
  • Three techniques to get yourself moving when you’re stuck
  • An NLP process that you can use over and over to create momentum with ease

At the ArtistsMBA, you are learning a lot about how to create a successful, sustainable and profitable business doing what you love.  But until you put this knowledge into action your dreams are fantasies.  This class will help you move past your internal blocks and into action.

Additional Resources for this Class:

Prerequisite Class:

Listen to the Class:

Thank you for your interest. This content is visible to ArtistsMBA Professional, Mastery Program members only. Click here to access.

Enroll in the Artists Marketing & Business Academy Foundation Program
to access the following classes today ($5 for first 10 days/$27 per month Tuition):

Read the Class Transcript

(Transcript coming soon.)
Thank you for your interest. This content is visible to ArtistsMBA Mastery Program members only. Click here to access.

Enroll in the Artists Marketing & Business Academy Mastery Lab to access the transcript of this class today


Thank you for your interest. This content is visible to ArtistsMBA foundation, professional Program members only. Click here to access.

Next Class:

How to Manage Cash Flow for Your Art Business

Artists MBA, Professional ProgramDo you know the number 1 reason businesses fail?  Cash Flow. Or to use business terminology, insufficient capital or operating funds.

Knowing how to manage your finances (business and personal), manage your cash flow and plan your cash flow management is critical to your success.

In this class Debra will show you how to take your business beyond the gig-to-gig, sale-to-sale mentality and build a financial foundation that generates prosperity and a sustainable career. Are you ready for the big time?

You’ll learn:

  • How to break out of the time for money trap
  • How to plan for the cyclical nature of your cash flow
  • The difference between good debt and bad debt
  • The benefits of separating your personal and business finances
  • How to make the most of your tax deductions
  • Getting your financial house ready for the big time!

Additional Resources for this Class:

Prerequisite Class:

Listen to the Class:

Thank you for your interest. This content is visible to ArtistsMBA Professional, Mastery Program members only. Click here to access.

Enroll in the Artists Marketing & Business Academy Foundation Program
to access the following classes today ($5 for first 10 days/$27 per month Tuition):

Read the Class Transcript

(Transcript coming soon.)
Thank you for your interest. This content is visible to ArtistsMBA Mastery Program members only. Click here to access.

Enroll in the Artists Marketing & Business Academy Mastery Lab to access the transcript of this class today


Thank you for your interest. This content is visible to ArtistsMBA foundation, professional Program members only. Click here to access.

Next Class:

MUSIC INDUSTRY SECRETS – Trends in Radio Panel

I was invited to attend this panel sponsored by ReverbNation and hosted by The Knitting Factory last week.

The Panelists were:

  • Moderator: Valerie Gurka, Marketing Director – Knitting Factory Entertainment
  • Lynda McLaughlin Producer – Premiere Radio Networks, Founder/Partner – LYVA Music and Espresso Sounds Publishing.
  • Liz Berg Assistant General Manager – WFMU Radio
  • Seth Hillinger, Creative Technologist – iHeartRadio, Organizer – Music Tech Meetup
  • Michael Gunzelman, Radio Host – The Gunz Show, Idobi Radio

I found it very informative.  And overall, the panel answered one of my key questions about the Music Business in the 20-teens:

Is radio still relevant?

I was happy to discover that today’s radio, as a curator of music and as a place to discover new music, is still alive and well.  And thanks to the Internet as well as local, college and NPR stations, radio still has a place in the marketing and promotional plans for unsigned, independent DIY bands and musicians.

How and where people listen to radio depends largely on their demographics and geographic locations.  People Over age 50 and/or living in rurul or suburban areas are more likely to listen to terrestrial radio in their cars and home. Younger audiences and urban audiences are more likely to listen via the internet and their smart phone, ipad or ipod.  So, knowing who you’re targeting will help to guide your decisions when promoting your music to radio.

According to the panelists, today’s music fan is still introduced to new music via radio, but unlike 30 years ago, their next step isn’t to buy the album at a brick and mortar retailer.  Now, when someone discovers new music via either radio exposure or the use of that music in TV shows, commercials or films, their next step is to listen to that band or artist on YouTube and then seek to stream or purchase their music via Spotify, iTunes or the like.

Which means that getting your music up on YouTube as well as using an online distribution center such as CDBaby or SoundCloud is critical.

They also commented that using Internet Radio and other curator services such as Spotify and turntable.fm have been great in the past for reaching an international audience, and they are currently hampered by international licensing issues.

How do artists pitch to radio?

The biggest mistake you can make is sending your CD to a program director and then calling her a million times, leaving the “have you listened to my CD yet?” message. Program directors are inundated and they don’t owe you anything.  Be respectful of their time and their process.

First research and make sure that your music is a good fit for that stations programming.  Send your CD to the music director, but don’t call over and over!  You’re more likely to get a response from targeting specific DJs.  Search the radio website to target DJs who play music like yours.  Another sources is the CMJ NMR Report

Another important aspect is to network at live events.  A personal connection is always better than a cold submission.

This panel didn’t seem high on using Radio promoters.  And if you do decide to go this route, they highly recommend that you do your research before hiring a radio promoter.  Get the list of bands your prospective promotor is working with and talk to them.  Find out if they’re happy, find out what kinds of results they’re seeing from the promotion and if they’d work with this promoter again.

Another suggestion was to use turntable.fm and be a bit sneaky.  Become a DJ and curate music within your genre, and create a fanbase as a curator, then periodically slip in your music.

The idea of people curating music for their friends creating play lists and sharing seemed both intriguing and a bit threatening to this panel, basically they felt that DJs are the better choice for learning about new music (an understandable bias).  They mentioned that Spotify had merged with Facebook, making it really easy to share play lists with your friends and requiring a Facebook profile to join.

Other Resources Mentioned:

Artist affiliation on iheartradioUnsigned, undiscovered artists can submit to “Discover & Uncover”

WFMU Free Music Archive for creative commons – The Free Music Archive is an interactive library of high-quality, legal audio downloads.  The Free Music Archive is directed by WFMU, the most renowned freeform radio station in America.  Radio has always offered the public free access to new music. The Free Music Archive is a continuation of that purpose, designed for the age of the internet.  You can tell people it’s safe to use for podcasting and then promote your music to music blogs.

Tumblr is also getting huge for music blogging.

How does radio fit into your music promotion?