Running for the exit
You’re losing fans right now! No time to waste – let’s get to it. Here’s how it’s happening:

1. You’re not motivating people to check you out

Why should I check you out? Not to be harsh, but If you don’t know then I’m not interested and well, neither is anyone else.

Who cares?Effective promotion isn’t about wallpapering your town with your name. If you’re fortunate enough to capture someone’s attention you need to motivate them to act or else there’s not much point.

Take a look at the photo on the right. I don’t know who Mike and Corey are and they’ve given me no reason to find out.

There’s a qr code on the sticker and an indigogo logo. This leads me to believe that they’re promoting a fund raising campaign. I have no idea who they are or what they do but it looks like they want money from me.

How about a quote from a fan telling me how awesome they are? How about an intriguing description of what they do? How about a compelling image that captures my attention and imagination?

Sure, they got my attention, and they even ended up in a blog post, but what’s it going to lead to? Nothing, unless they can come up with a good reason why people should care.

2. You’re not telling people who you are


Any time you play live there should be a visual cue that makes it clear to me what your name is. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve dropped in during the middle of a band’s set and never found out what their name was.

Sure, if you blow the doors off the place then people will find out who you are, but you’d better blow the doors off the place. And even then, if you want to be mysterious then this isn’t the way to do it. Make sure they know your name.

I don’t care what you say about me, just spell my name right. ― P.T. Barnum

3. You’re confusing people on your website


According to Dr. Flint McGlaughlin of, you’ve got about 7 seconds to give people a clear idea of where they are when they land on a page on your website. If it’s not clear to them who you are and what you do then they will most likely leave and not come back.

So what’s your name and what do you do (southern rock cover band? original punk band? classical pianist?)? Make sure it’s obvious to your visitors. Don’t be clever, be clear.

Clarity trumps persuasion. – Dr. Flint McGlaughlin,

4. Your not signing people up for your mailing list

music mailWhen it comes to developing a long term relationship with your fans online, there’s no substitute for email. There are several reasons for this, which would warrant a whole other blog post. To start with, here’s an obvious one:

People are much more likely to see an email than a Tweet or a Facebook post. By a long shot.

If you’re serious about a career in music then you should be serious about email.

So when you play a show, is everyone asked to be on your mailing list? Do you have one or more people walking around with a clipboard asking people personally to join your list? Make this a top priority.

5. You can’t describe what you do

Derek Sivers and Ariel Hyatt explain this better than I do, so I’ll let them do the talking:

Do any of these hit home for you? Do you have any suggestions of your own? Leave a comment below!

Scott James
Scott James

Scott James is a guitar player with a background in sales and web design. His clients have included Ritchie Kotzen, Kenny Lee Lewis of the Steve Miller Band and hit songwriter Jeff Silbar. Recent project include the Viral Music Player which he programmed and co-created with fellow blogger/marketer John Oszajca. Scott began blogging on his site in 2009 and has since written some of the most popular posts for CD Baby’s DIY Musician and Disc Makers’ Echoes blog. Scott has studied guitar and music theory with Chris Broderick of Megadeth. He has also received a diploma in Neuro Linguistic Programming from Dr. Wyatt Woodsmall and is currently in training for Myers-Briggs profiling certification with Antonia Dodge and Camronn Huff as well as studying entrepreneurship, personal development and various personality profiling systems under the guidance of mentor Giovanni Cavalieri.

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