7 Great Public Relation Tips for Success in the Music Business
One of the most amazing things about being an indie artist is that you control your career. You control your music, image and platform. This is great for independent artists who want to run their entire career. It’s more than just writing and publishing your own songs. It’s more than just running your own social media accounts. One of the most important factors that determine the success of an artist is your PR (public relations). A lot of indie artists are unfamiliar with public relations and how they work. This is due to the fact that most PR skills are learned when signed to a record label. But if you’re an indie artist you may not have a publicist or someone to explain how PR works. This is why reading our 7 public relation tips for music business success is very important.
1) Don’t constantly brag
As much as it’s important to have confident, you don’t want to overdo it. There’s a fine line between confident and arrogance. What a lot of people like to disguise as confidence is really arrogance and bragging. Yes, you’re suppose to be confident and believe in yourself. However, in the music business if you’re too “braggy” that’s a turn off. The best thing to do when being an artist in the music business is let your work speak for itself. You don’t have to tell everyone how great your new song is. You don’t have to tell everyone how good you can sing. When they hear you or see your voice it will show. Your music will instantly speak for itself. Contrary to popular belief most highly talented artists are not arrogant. Sure they may be confident on stage. But if you met them or saw them at an event they wouldn’t be running around bragging about how great they are. They simply let art speak for itself. An artist who was notoriously known for being humble yet very confident on stage is Michael Jackson.
2) Be easy to work with
One of the biggest music business tips any indie artist should know is to be easy to work with. This is considered music business 101 and has been around since the very beginning. In order to succeed as a mainstream or indie artist you’re going to have to be easy to work with. Unfortunately, a lot of artists who aren’t familiar with public relations think they’re suppose to act difficult. They have this false impression that acting like a “diva” or “brat” is how an artist is suppose to act. They believe they’re acting like “the rest of the stars.” The reality is most stars are very easy to work with. That’s why they get to the level they are at. You don’t get to a high profile or A-list level being difficult and hard to work with. This doesn’t mean you have to be a push over. However, being spoiled and demanding will instantly give you a bad reputation. No one will want to work with you.
3) Be punctual
Another great music business tip that helps you understand PR is being punctual. Being on time and even arriving early is extremely important. If you’re an indie artist and serious about building a successful career then being on time should be a huge priority. When learning the business side of the music industry you’ll soon find out how much this matters. It may seem small and trivial. However, nothing could be further from the truth. Being on time and punctual will instantly help build your reputation and allow you to leave a good impression. It’s a great public relation reputation to have. First and foremost it shows that you value whoever you’re working with time. It also shows your serious about the project. It shows that you’re considerate. It also shows you’re a professional. No matter how many stories you hear about some artists being notoriously late, don’t try it. It may seem like they’re getting away with it but the reality is it’s already giving them bad public relations.
4) Be a good sport
This tip may not be found in a music business book or spoke of often. However, one of the best ways to build a great PR reputation is to be a good sport. This simply means complimenting other artists. Yes, a lot of singers, rappers, etc. are very competitive. This is common but it’s a turn off in the music business. You should be able to humbly compliment fellow artists, even if they’re competition for you. Embracing other artists will give you a great reputation and make you a much more loved artists. Other artists will start to admire you for embracing others. This doesn’t mean you have to be phony or agree with something you honestly don’t agree with. However, don’t think it’s a sin to compliment and encourage fellow artists, especially if you honestly like their work. Whitney Houston is a great example of a gifted singer who still embraced other singers such as Brandy, Mary J. Blige, Aaliyah, Monica, Mariah Carey and many more.
5) Social media etiquette
The reality is we live in the era of social media. So many things revolve around social media and online content. This is why as an artist one of the biggest music business PR tips is to use social media wisely. As an artist you have to know how to conduct yourself on social media. Arguing with non-fans or other public figures is a very bad PR move. It’s beginning to become popular in the new social media age. However, for true music business etiquette and public relations it’s a very bad look. Once you become a public figure of any kind you should conduct yourself a certain way. Every interaction doesn’t have to be perfect or pleasant. However, there are skills you can learn to politely decline or disengage in any type of negativity. If you’re looking for the artist’s guide to success in the music business then it’s imperative that you know having etiquette is one of the keys.
6) Don’t bash other artists
A very important PR tip for the business of music is to not bash other artists or public figures. As the old saying goes “if you don’t have anything nice to say, don’t say nothing at all.” This should definitely be practiced throughout the music industry. There are plenty of singers, rappers, actors and many more celebrities who don’t like each other. This has been going on in Hollywood/ the entertainment industry for years. However, there once was a time where you had no idea which stars didn’t get along. This is because they didn’t blast it all over the place. They also knew how to act cordial with one another in public. This is because good public relations training was given to artists in the earlier days. In recent years public relations have died down. However, if you want to build an everlasting name and platform in the music business you should still practice PR. This is why it’s so important that you pay attention to these tips. Don’t spend time bashing fellow artists and people you don’t like. Simply embrace the ones you do and focus on being a better you.
7) Show ambition and initiative
One of the best music business and PR tips is to show initiative. Succeeding in the music industry is tough and you have to be ambitious. Displaying your initiative, drive and motivation will take you to many levels you could only dream. People in the music business appreciate an artist who is willing to fight for their dream. If you’re an artist who will invest time, energy and money into your career this will impressive many executives and fellow artists. If people see you’re hardworking and willing to put in the work for your career this will work to your advantage. People will be interested in working with you. You’ll be known for having a strong work ethic. You’ll also motivate others to become go-getters. Most artists who are highly successful and have been groomed with proper PR skills are also very hardworking.
All you need to know about the music business in regards to public relations doesn’t stop with the 7 tips. There are many more PR techniques and skills you can learn to advance your career. However, utilizing these 7 music business tips will certainly put you months ahead in your career as an artist.