Dave Cool

Musicians: Touring Isn't Just About Ticket & Merch Sales

Brian Thompson, aka Thorny Bleeder, describes himself as a Rock n' Roll Brand Architect, Idea Development Engineer, Digital Strategist and Music Marketer. He co-hosts the Music Biz Weekly and Rock Star Branding podcasts, and curates the DIY Daily, a daily newsletter offering marketing advice, music industry news, social media tips & tools, tech, apps & gadgets, inspirational & motivational thoughts. In this thought-provoking guest post, Brian talks about some of the intangible benefits of going out on tour. Enjoy!

 

Musicians: Touring Isn't Just About Ticket & Merch Sales

 

Touring isn't just about ticket and merch sales.

It ignites conversations.
It gives people a reason to talk about you.

It sparks the fuel that enables your career to catch aflame.

It's about giving influencers a reason to play you on their radio show, to print a feature in their local entertainment paper, to publish a blog about you, to feature you on their podcast or to run a ticket contest in their local indie record store.

Touring isn't just about ticket and merch sales. It's about being a part of the local What's Happening conversation. It's about being newsworthy. It's about being remarkable (worth remarking on).

Touring sets you apart from every other band out there, because it's YOU who's in town tonight... not them.

Touring puts you in the local limelight... before, during and after your performance.

Even those who missed your show will feel compelled to listen to your songs after reading that glowing review of your show.

Even those who missed your show hold the potential of being a new fan after clicking on their friend's Facebook links (who won't shut up about how great your show was).

Touring is an investment in your future.
It's not just about the immediacy of your nightly collections from the door.

Quit analyzing every dollar that is, or isn't, immediately "recouped" on your first few tours.
There's more to it than that. Look at the big picture.

The music industry is nothing more than a world of recommendations.
In order to survive you need to be talked about.

Ignite the global conversation.

Get your ass out on the road... as often as possible (and make sure you have some cool shit to sell while you're at it too). 


You can read more blog posts by Brian Thompson on his website: www.thornybleeder.com

Follow Brian on Twitter: @thornybleeder


What do you think Zooglers? Is touring about much more than ticket and merch sales? Have you experienced these intangible benefits that Brian talks about? Tell us your tour stories in the comments below!

Posted by Dave Cool on 04/30/2012 | 7 comments
Stacey

Band website love: Yancy and Yancy

Every week, we highlight one of our favorite websites on Bandzoogle.

Who: Yancy and Yancy
What: Folky mountain music
Where: Tennessee
Why their website rocks: This country duo has a great story and that is expressed through their warm music, whimsicle artwork and most importantly, their unique website! The intro text gets you interested in listening to their music, which is conveniently located right next to it. They keep visitors coming back for more by maintaining a video blog right on their site. 
Check it out at http://yancyandyancy.com


Posted by Stacey on 04/27/2012 | 3 comments
Dave Cool

Musician Website Quick Fix #6: Host Your Own Blog

The "Website Quick Fix" series of posts are written by musician website and marketing platform Bandzoogle

When we do website evaluations here at Bandzoogle, there are two broad categories we look at: Design and Content. With poor design, it will be hard to find interesting content on the site. With great design and poor content, there is little reason for fans to visit. With that second category in mind, let’s talk about blogging.

Why Should You Blog?

There are plenty of reasons for musicians to blog on a regular basis:

Drives people to your website

First and foremost, blogging is one of the best ways to drive people to your website. Every time you create a new blog post, it’s an excuse for you to invite fans to check out your website. Some artists create a blog separate from their website and host it on one of the various blogging platforms, but why give traffic to a site that you don’t own?

Instead, host the blog on your website that you own, where you can collect valuable data to know where those fans are from, what songs they listened to, how long they stayed on your site, etc. And by using your call-to-action, get them to sign up to your mailing list, or shop in your online store.

Gives you content for social media

Many artists struggle with what they should talk about on Facebook and Twitter. Creating new blog posts gives you great original content to push out to your social media profiles, and in turn, drives people to your website.

Shows that you’re active

Blogging is one of the best ways to show that you are active in your career. If a potential fan visits your site, enjoys your music (which you made easy to listen to), and then sees that you have months of regular blogging under your belt, they might click on a few posts to get a better sense of your personality. If they really like what they read, you might have a fan for life.

Note: If you do decide to start blogging, it’s really important to keep it up to date. Just as an updated blog can show that you’re active in your career, if your last post is from a year ago, it can create a negative impression. Focus on regularity, rather than trying to make each post perfect.

Creates stronger connection with your fans

Blogging is a great way to show your personality and give insight into your career, allowing fans to get to know you better. This can help turn a casual fan into a super fan by creating a stronger connection with them.

For the fan, reading about you and about your art on your blog adds some context to the music, and that’s how they’ll come to value it more. They might be fans of your music already, but if they become fans of you on top of that, then the music gains an increased perceived value. Our CEO David Dufresne likes to make the comparison of having your music in a gallery versus at IKEA.

Mike Masnick, of the blog Techdirt even turned it into a formula:

Connect with Fans (CwF) + Reason to Buy (RtB) = The Business Model

Blogging is great for SEO

Improving your SEO (search engine optimization) is another great reason to blog. Simply put, the more you blog, the more Google can find you, and the higher in the search results you will potentially appear based on the keywords, titles and content of your blog posts.

For example, let’s say you’re a ukulele player, and besides blogging about your career you also blog about how to tune a ukulele, how to repair a ukulele, what to look for when purchasing a new ukulele, etc. Chances are, people who are passionate about ukuleles might stumble on one of your helpful blog posts, and while they’re on your site, they’re exposed to your music, your personality, and you might gain a new fan.

Where to place a blog on your website

Your blog should ideally be part of your main menu navigation with it’s own section, and not a sub-menu item. You’ll want people to be able to find it easily if they want to find out more about you.

Many artists put their blog right on their Homepage. You can do this, but instead of putting the entire blog there, offer 2-3 entries, then direct people to your full blog on a separate page. You’ll want to use your Homepage as a welcoming page for potential new fans to give them a taste of who you are as an artist, and focusing their attention on your call-to-action.

Note: Although a blog should definitely be one element on your site, remember your website should not simply be a blog.

Blogging ideas

Not sure what to blog about? Here’s a quick brainstorm of 10 things you can blog about that might help trigger even more ideas:

  1. Preview an upcoming show
  2. Review a recent show
  3. Stories from tour
  4. Blog about rehearsals
  5. Stories from the studio
  6. New gear
  7. Talk about other great bands/musicians in your genre
  8. Stories from your personal life (if you’re comfortable with it)
  9. Talk about your crazy pet(s)
  10. Talk about a passion outside of music (maybe you’re a big sci-fi geek, or have a favorite sports team)

Photos & Videos

Some of you might be thinking “Well, that’s sounds great, but I’m not good at writing blog posts”. That’s ok, your blog posts can contain mostly photos, or can even be videos. Whichever method you are most comfortable communicating with, go for it. The important thing is to post new content on your site on a regular basis where fans can gain some insight into your career and who you are as an artist.


 Do you have a blog on your website? How often do you post? What do you blog about? Share links to your blogs in the comments below! 


Previous Website Quick Fix posts:

Musician Website Quick Fix #5: Add a Mailing List Sign-Up

Musician Website Quick Fix #4: Make it easy to listen to your music

Musician Website Quick Fix #3: Focus on one Call-to-Action

Musician Website Quick Fix #2: Lose the Intro Page

Musician Website Quick Fix #1: Turn off auto-start music

Posted by Dave Cool on 04/25/2012 | 5 comments
Justin

Band Website Love: Ludwyg

Every week, we highlight one of our favorite websites on Bandzoogle.

Who: Ludwyg
What: 2 piece Post-Punk, Noise, Electronica band
Where: Cleveland, Ohio
Why their website rocks: Ludwyg's great style starts with their awesome header image. The rest of their design is simple but cohesive, and borrows colours and elements from the header. Their home page is frequently updated with news, and free downloads of their music are available right on their Home page.
Check it out at http://ludwyg.com


Posted by Justin on 04/20/2012 | 0 comments
David Dufresne

Is Your Music in an Art Gallery or at Ikea?

(photo by Flickr user Simon Hucko)

I’ve been having many discussions recently about music and money, with friends and with musicians (and with musician friends !), where, like a broken record, I find myself going back to an analogy that I used in a Hypebot interview that was published almost 2 years ago, right after I joined Bandzoogle.

I thought it would be a good idea and timely to tweak it and repost here. I’m curious to hear what the extended Bandzoogle family thinks of it.

Is Your Music in an Art Gallery, or at Ikea ?

 Imagine an image, a painting that you really like. Imagine that you see this painting for the first time at an official opening in an art gallery (think a fancy, somewhat pretentious art gallery). You like this image, the colors, the technique, etc. Beautiful. You’re impressed. Damn, you love that painting.

Also, it would look awesome in your living room, wouldn’t it ? You have a chat with the artist, where she explains the concept and the process behind creating the painting, the materials used, what it means to her, what inspired it. She tells you a bit of her life story, and how and why she became a painter. You have a glass of wine; you discuss the painting with a few more people. They also like it a lot. Wow. Amazing art.

At that exact moment, this image, on that wall, might be worth hundreds of dollars to you. Maybe even thousands. If you really wanted it for yourself, and had the means, that’s what you would have to pay, and you know it.

OK. Stop. Now, forget the art gallery. Think of the exact same image that you liked a minute ago. But imagine if the first time you saw it, it was on a wall at an Ikea store, on a busy Saturday morning, surrounded by shopping carts and loud kids. You went because you needed new bed sheets. And there are 22 frames of that exact same wonderful image, lined up in a bin underneath it, for $29.99 each. No mention who the artist is. The picture is framed in something that could be either plastic or wood. Probably plastic.

You might still think the image would look great on your living room wall. Yes. But at that moment, it’s definitely worth a maximum of $29.99 + tax to you. Or, maybe you love the image, but you don’t ever want Ikea frames on your walls (you big snob)... so for you, right now it’s worth something like $0.00... even though you really love that image! Sorry, but your “wall real estate” is worth more than the frame.

So ask yourself, how can you explain the difference in perceived value for the exact same image at the gallery opening, and at Ikea?

Many possible answers here:

  • the perceived scarcity (only one original available at the gallery, and others might want it too)
  • the personal connection with the artist
  • the setting (fancy gallery, the free wine, other art lovers around)
  • the narrative, the back story you’ve associated to the art
  • the materials (the original vs. the copy)
  • the branding (maybe for you Ikea = cheap... but this artist and this gallery = cool and eclectic)

The list could go on. All of this is the context. The artistic content (the image) has little value by itself. But, content put into context, it becomes part of an experience. This experience can be worth a lot (buying original work straight from a cool artist on opening night), or it can be worth something, but a smaller “something” (buying a frame at Ikea).

Music is the same ! For a fan, music is content. But, what its context ? The amazing song you just wrote wouldn’t have the same value if your name was Dave Matthews (or Kanye or whatever) and wrote the exact same song. Before anyone else has engaged emotionally with it, and had an enjoyable experience with it, I’m sorry but it’s only worth something to you. So, think about how your music can be valued, in terms of narrative, personal connections, perceived scarcity, branding, etc. Technology can help, by helping you create a narrative and a branding on your website (your bio, your design, your pictures) that make fans interested to hear more of your music.

Streaming services like Pandora or Spotify can help create contexts where new fans will discover your music. Communicating with your fans using your mailing list, blog, Facebook, Twitter, etc. can help create personal connections that make your fans attach even more value to your music. You create great experiences when you put on an amazing live performance, and promote it using online and offline tools. So, you need to be creative in making art, but also in creating contexts, and letting others create many and diverse contexts in which this art can be part of enjoyable and valuable experiences.

Put more simply, your music, by itself, isn’t worth much. It’s when put into context, when it becomes part of your fan’s enjoyable experience, that it becomes valuable. That can mean someone buying 2 CDs, a t-shirt and a poster at the merch table, or it can mean someone buying one track for $1.29 on iTunes.

Art gallery or Ikea? The role of technology tools is to help you multiply those possible contexts, and monetize them when you can.

Posted by David Dufresne on 04/18/2012 | 7 comments
Dave Cool

Musicians: How To Collect Live Performance Royalties

This is a guest post by Songtrust. Songtrust gives music makers an easy way to register songs and collect royalties. You can get 10% off your first year with Songtrust by using this link.

In this post, they talk about about how to collect royalties for your live performances. Enjoy!

How To: Collect Live Performance Royalties

For songwriters and bands performing their own material, there’s an opportunity to earn additional royalties from live performances. All three US Performance Rights Organizations (PROs) can pay royalties from live performances at bars, clubs, restaurants and other music venues.

In order to collect these royalties, each PRO requires writers to alert them of live performances. Below is the best way for writers affiliated with ASCAP, BMI or SESAC to maximise their live performance royalties.

 

ASCAP Plus

The ASCAP Plus Awards program is available to writers who received less than $25,000 in domestic performance royalties in the previous calendar year.

To be considered for an ASCAP Plus Award, each writer must submit an online application via Member Access. The application must be submitted annually and reference achievements of the previous calendar year.

More info: ASCAP Plus

*Bandzoogle is headed to the ASCAP EXPO this week, if you’ll be there, let us know!

 

BMI Live

To sign up for BMI Live, songwriters should log into the BMI Live section of bmi.com and register their set lists, with the date and venue where they performed. They will then be eligible for quarterly royalty payments for the public performance of their original songs and compositions.

For Apple iPhone, iPad and iPod Touch users, BMI Live can be accessed from the BMI Mobile app, while Android users will find BMI Live on the BMI Mobile website. BMI Live’s mobile platforms offer all the same services that are available online via laptop and desktop computers.

More info: BMI Live

SESAC

Register your sets via your publishing account on SESAC Affiliate Services. Once you’ve logged in, complete live performance forms for any live gigs.

You’re able to create a set list (e.g. Fall Tour 2011) and copy / paste it into each venue. You’ll need each venue’s address, date of show, venue capacity, if there was a music charge and the list of songs to submit.

More info: SESAC Live Performance Royalties


Bandzoogle note for Canadian musicians:

SOCAN offers a program for collecting royalties for live performances, more info here: http://www.socan.ca/jsp/en/pub/music_creators/gettingPaid.jsp


Are you collecting royalties on live performances? Did you know that could even do that? Let us know in the comments!

Posted by Dave Cool on 04/16/2012 | 2 comments
Melanie

Band Website Love: The Bamboos

Every week, we highlight one of our favorite websites on Bandzoogle.

Who: The Bamboos
What: Nine-piece funk and soul band
Where: Melbourne, Australia
Why their website rocks: Using a simple style that makes great use of the color red to match their energetic vibe, the Bamboos also feature great content, including images, on their Home page as news.  The page is nicely balanced in two even columns, with a prominent call to action sitting at the top right to let their fans know in advance that they have a new album coming out.
Check it out at http://thebamboos.com


Posted by Melanie on 04/13/2012 | 3 comments
Dave Cool

Musician Website Quick Fix #5: Add a Mailing List Sign-Up


Another element you should have on your website is a sign-up form for your mailing list. Email sounds pretty old-school, but the reality is that a mailing list is still the best way to stay in touch with your fans. Here’s why:

Top 3 Reasons to Have a Mailing List 

1- You own it

Remember all those fans you had on MySpace? Well, MySpace owned their data, not you, and chances are if you didn’t get them signed-up to your mailing list, you lost contact with many of them.

Facebook? Same deal. They own the data, and they too can disappear. Or, as it seems to be happening, it gets too crowded and noisy. Statistics regularly show that only a very small percentage of people actually see your updates. So if you have important news to announce, your mailing list is your best bet to reach most of your fan base.

Twitter? Same issue with data, and tweets only last for a few hours, so again, it’s hard to tell how many of your followers are actually seeing your updates.

Bottom line is that social media sites are great tools for interacting with current fans and finding new ones, but you’ll want to get them signed-up to your mailing list so you can stay in touch with your fans over the long-term, regardless of which social media site is popular at the time.

2- It’s the ultimate permission marketing

An email list is the ultimate in permission marketing. Once a fan gives you their email address, they’re telling you that they want to hear about your career, that they want to know about your latest album, your next show, your new merchandise, etc. That’s an incredibly powerful thing, and those email addresses should be treated like gold.

Note: Don’t ever, EVER add people to your mailing list without their permission. Spamming people can do irreparable harm to your career, as you will likely lose those people as potential fans forever.

3- Best way to sell to your fans

And finally, when it comes to cold, hard cash, both inside and outside the music industry, email newsletters are still the best way to convert fans to paying customers.

As noted artist manager Emily White has said, an email list “is an artist’s retirement plan”

Where to position your sign-up form

So where do you place your mailing list sign-up form on your website? Right on the Homepage, “above the fold”; which is to say visible right away, without having to scroll down. In fact, you should make your mailing list sign-up your primary call-to-action on your website.

If you’re an emerging artist, focus on building that mailing list before anything. Don’t worry so much about selling music & merch just yet, build a strong mailing list and over the long term it will be worth much more than trying to get that 0.99$ download right away when people visit your site.

Offer an incentive

And finally, don’t forget to offer an incentive to the person who will be giving you their email address. Getting the “latest news” or “inside scoop” on your career is nice, but offering a little something more might be the difference between getting that email or not. It could be as simple as a free MP3, and even better would be an exclusive track that can’t be found anywhere else.

Some bands use their live recordings to offer up a free/exclusive Live EP in exchange for an email address, and I’ve seen some even give away a free download of an older album. Use your creativity to find something unique, exclusive and fun that will give a potential new fan no choice but to hand over their email address.

For some great tips on writing effective newsletters, definitely check out Ariel Hyatt’s blog post "How to Write Engaging Newsletters

 


 

Do you have a mailing list sign-up on your website? Is it your main call-to-action on your homepage? What are you giving away in return for the email address? Let us know in the comments below! 


Previous Website Quick Fix posts:

Musician Website Quick Fix #4: Make it easy to listen to your music

Musician Website Quick Fix #3: Focus on one Call-to-Action

Musician Website Quick Fix #2: Lose the Intro Page

Musician Website Quick Fix #1: Turn off auto-start music

Posted by Dave Cool on 04/10/2012 | 0 comments
Dave Cool

The Four P’s of Playing Live Shows: Performance

Cargnello

The “Four P’s” is a term used to describe the traditional Marketing Mix: Product, Price, Placement, and Promotion. I’m borrowing from that expression to talk about the Four P’s of Playing Live Shows: Preparation, Promotion, Performance, and Post-Show. This series of blog posts will cover the things that you can be doing as a live performer to maximize each show. In Part 3, it’s all about your performance:


The Four P’s of Playing Live Shows: Performance

What makes for a great live show? A concert is a very subjective experience, so the answer really depends on who you ask, and genre of music can be a huge factor as well.

So when thinking about this third “P”, I tried to come up with a few universal characteristics that contribute to a great live performance, that can (maybe) hold true for every genre:

3 Universal Characteristics of a Great Live Performance

“Are you delivering something with enough authenticity and passion that people demand you do it again for their friends?” - Seth Godin

1. PASSION
Play like it’s your last show, ever - A lesson from Charles Bradley

I sing every time like it's the last show I'm doing.”- Charles Bradley

It’s hard enough to launch a music career in your 20’s, let alone your 60’s. But at the tender age of 64, soul singer Charles Bradley launched his solo career with his debut album "No Time For Dreaming" on Daptone Records. Charles Bradley realizes how fortunate he is, and takes advantage of every show he plays by treating it like it could be his last.

Although it might sound extreme, when you think about it, the only time that exists is the present; there is no past, and there is no guarantee of a future. So if bands treated every show like it could be their last, the energy and passion that would come through would no doubt help make for a great performance.


2. SPONTANEITY
Don’t Be Afraid to Embrace Spontaneity - A Lesson from Dan Mangan

those truly memorable moments of gig beauty can only come at the intersection of vulnerability, honesty and spontaneity” - Dan Mangan

I first saw Vancouver singer-songwriter Dan Mangan at the OCFF conference in October 2010. I’ll never forget that at one point during his showcase, Dan jumped down from the stage and started singing while walking through the audience, encouraging them to join in. It was a risky move, because the room wasn’t filled with hundreds of his fans, but with industry types who might not go along with him. He was leaving himself incredibly vulnerable, and it could’ve easily backfired.

But his gamble paid off, and the crowd clapped and sang along, and before you knew it, 200+ music industry people were helping to create a truly magical moment at his showcase, and a conference highlight for many who were there.


3. INCLUDE THE AUDIENCE
Get the Audience Involved - A Lesson from Rich Aucoin

This ties into the previous point, but deserves special attention: audience participation. It can take form in many ways; a sing-along at a folk show, clapping at a gospel show, waving your arms in the air at a hip-hop show, or handing the audience hundreds of glow sticks at an electronic music show.

But I witnessed a truly unique form of audience participation at the Osheaga Festival in Montreal a few years ago. There was a small tent along a dirt path between two sets of larger stages where artists were busking to raise money for War Child. With the distraction of mobs of people and lots of other music going on at larger stages, many people walked by with barely a glance at the tent. But not when Rich Aucoin performed.

He poured so much passion and energy into his performance (point #1), even climbing a tree that was next to the tent while continuing to sing (point #2). But the real highlight was when he broke out a parachute and had the audience hold it up and dance underneath it. Remember doing that when you were a kid in gym class? Yeah, good times.

I saw a lot of big name acts at that festival, but I ended up talking about Rich’s performance more than any other.


Improving Your Performance

This all begs the question: how do you know if you’ve given a great live performance? Obviously, much of it can be instinctual; getting a feel from the crowd, sensing whether you’re connecting with them or not. But here are a few ways to get feedback and insight on your live performance that can help you to make improvements:

Ask Your Fans

Talk to fans right after the show, send a survey by email, or create a poll on your website asking their opinion. You can even set up a Twitter hashtag for the show and get real-time feedback from the audience.

Record the Show

You never know how you really look onstage until you see a video of it. It can be a painful exercise for many artists (many feel uncomfortable, similar to how some actors can’t watch their performances in movies), but the potential payoff is huge. There are no doubt lots of ways you can improve the look/dynamic and performance on stage, and seeing the performance on video is one of the best ways to assess and make those adjustments.

Get Feedback from an Objective Source

Ask the bartender, the booker, or other staff at the venue about your live performance, they might offer some great insight that others might not. You can also talk to your manager, booking agent, label, or even friends & family. Just be sure that the person you’re asking can tell you the truth without sugar-coating it, or on the flipside, without being mean about it.

Whichever way you get feedback, you’ll likely find some of it helpful, some of it less helpful, but there might be recurring themes that you can pick up on, and those are the things that can help you make tweaks to your show.

Practice, Practice, Practice

This one is a no brainer. If your band isn’t rehearsing, your band isn’t improving. And if there is any question within your band whether you should be practicing or not, please refer to this chart.

Get Outside Help

On an individual level, every musician can improve the performance of their own instrument, be it guitar, drums, or your voice. Practicing on your own is of course one way to improve and stay sharp, but getting outside advice or formal lessons from a teacher can make a huge difference in your technique, endurance, and ability to improvise.

There are lots of great resources out there on each instrument, but for all the singers out there, Cari Cole has a lot of great resources on her website, and offers great tips through her twitter feed.

On a group level, you can look into hiring a live music producer. A live music producer essentially does for live shows what a record producer does in the studio, which is to help bring out the best in the artist. Probably the best known live music producer is Tom Jackson, who has helped pioneer the concept. His website is definitely worth checking out: www.onstagesuccess.com

Don’t Forget to Do These Things During Your Show

Before ending this post, here are a few small things, outside of your performance, that you can do during your show that can help make a positive impact on your career going forward:

Ask People to Sign Your Mailing List

When you have a captive audience, don’t forget to remind them to sign your mailing list before leaving that night. Email is still the best, most reliable way to stay in touch with your fans, so be sure to promote your list from the stage.

Promote your merch

Same goes for your merch. Have a new CD? Mention it while on stage. New 7” vinyl? Mention that too. Fancy new girly tees? Mention those. You don’t have to be a used car salesman, but there are creative/funny ways to remind the audience that every little bit of support helps, especially if you’re on tour.

Thank the soundman, staff, booker

While on stage, it’s always a nice touch to thank the soundman, bar staff, and booker for having you at the venue. A little appreciation goes a long way.

Have fun

And finally, don’t forget to have fun on stage, because at the end of the day, this is all about playing music. Because if you’re not having fun, chances are the audience won’t be either.


Is there anything you would add to the “3 Universal Characteristics of a Great Live Performance”? How about ways to improve your performance? I’ve no doubt forgotten something, let me know in the comments!

Posted by Dave Cool on 04/05/2012 | 5 comments
Dave Cool

Free eBook for Musicians: The KISS School of Marketing

Michael Brandvold

Michael Brandvold is a music industry marketing consultant, speaker, and author based in California. He co-hosts the Music Biz Weekly and Rock Star Branding podcasts, and has been invited to share his knowledge at conferences like SXSW Interactive, California Music Industry Summit, Canadian Music Week, Driven Music Conference, amongst many others.

Michael has extensive music industry experience, but it was KISS Otaku — his KISS fan site launched in 1995 — that would change his fortunes forever. In 1998, Gene Simmons of KISS discovered KISS Otaku and personally tapped Michael as the Director of Web Services at Signatures Network, a Sony/CMGi company, where he built from scratch, managed and grew KISSonline into a multi-million-dollar enterprise with over half a million visitors per month.

Michael just released a free eBook for musicians called “KISS School of Marketing: 11 Lessons I Learned While Working with KISS to highlight some of the most important lessons he learned during his time working with the band KISS. Here’s an excerpt from the book:

Lesson 5: Not Everything You Do Will Succeed

Gene Simmons understands that everything he does will not succeed. That does not stop him. He keeps putting out business ventures, KISS product, tours and albums. He knows that some of these will succeed and they will be remembered. Our attention spans are so short today that we will quickly forget the failures.

Don’t stress them; learn what you can and move on to the next idea. Got a content idea for your website? Try it. If your fans don’t get excited, move on to something else. That last contest didn’t work? Try a different contest.

Paul Stanley: “The lessons of success are a lot sweeter, but without failure, you don’t appreciate success. Failure is a reminder that you’re not perfect and that you can be better. If you don’t learn anything from failure, you probably aren’t going to succeed.”

To Download the complete eBook, visit: www.michaelbrandvold.com

Follow Michael Brandvold on Twitter: @michaelsb


Do you have any stories of lessons learned after something didn’t work out in your career? Please share them in the comments section below!

Posted by Dave Cool on 04/04/2012 | 2 comments