You just recorded a CD!!! whoop-dee-doo. now what….?
So you have just spent __ years recording your CD / EP. You have poured your heart, soul and literally every penny into this project. You have the Mixed and Mastered copies in your hands, and are thinking “GREAT! It’s done.” The reality is, NO…. You have just got yourself started.
Here are some tips on what to do once you have recorded your album, and things you need to consider/work on prior to any sort of official release.
Being in a band, or being an artist is a full time job. You have to work your asses off to try and make a career out of this. It’s not just going to come easy and your not all of a sudden going to be able to sell out shows and make money without a lot of hard work, dedication and then, some more work! You can’t just “release your CD” … nothing will happen. Ever. Okay, maybe 1 in 1 million, but your chances are next to nothing.
Before you do any of these next steps, make sure you album has been recorded properly and up to industry standards* in order to have a chance of success, especially on Radio. *High Quality recording, well written songs, great sounding vocals/ instruments mixed and mastered at a high level.
6 weeks BEFORE your release here are some things you need to do:
- Register all songs for SOCAN/US affiliate such as BMI
- Register all songs for ACTRA
- Apply for any necessary grants for marketing the album if you have not already done so, or have $5000 – $10,000 minimum saved in order to promote this album/ single properly.
- Sign up for CD Baby/ Tunecore 4 – 6 weeks in advance in order to ensure your music will be on iTunes in time for your release. Price your singles now at 1.29 which is the standard from .99 of previous years.
- Start making your social media pages (Facebook, Twitter and Instagram) active, and ensure that your followers aware of all of your current and upcoming news. Build some hype, and post more often to engage fans in questions and conversation.
- Hire a radio tracker to service your single 4 – 6 weeks before your SINGLE release (album released generally follow 4 – 8 weeks after your first single is out and making some momentum)
- Discuss with a Publicist, if their services are right for you. If so you will generally want to hire them for a month or two once your single/album is out.
- A CD release party isn’t necessary, but if you do have a good local following it may be a good opportunity to showcase your new music as well as make some money from CD/merch sales.
- Set up a soundcloud link / private player of your songs so that you have it to send around to radio trackers, industry professional, publisist etc.
- Make sure your social media/ website/bio/ images/ branding is all up to date and coincides with your upcoming release.
I have been told, time and time again, and I will say it to you all now.
“The first look, is the most important look” so often times there is NO rush on your release. I know you will be excited and eager to show your friends, but having everything lined up properly is CRUCIAL in order for your best chance of success. Without this, you are just another amateur band in a brutally competitive industry. That means all aspects of your career, your live show, your image, your songs, your team, and all of the day to day admin work is rocking. Raise your bar! Strive for the best and compare your work to other successful acts. If you don’t, you’ll just be another band that gets lost in the sea of music.