The Bandzoogle Blog

10 years of advice, inspiration and resources for musicians navigating the new music industry.

Josh Garrels Charts on Billboard Despite Giving Album Away Free on NoiseTrade

Josh Garrels Charts on Billboard Despite Giving Album Away Free on NoiseTrade

This is a guest post by Chandler Coyle which originally appeared on The Coyle Report.

You’re an independent artist about to release your first album in four years. On release day, in addition to making the album available via download stores and streaming, you give away free downloads of the whole album away on NoiseTrade.  Crazy? No. Josh Garrelsnew album Home just charted on Billboard despite (or because of) also being available for free.

Giving away a new album on the day that it’s first made available has become for me, the ultimate form of ‘release,'” explains Garrels. “I pour my sweat and blood into the work and an album often takes me years to complete, but somehow, making it available for free creates a healthier relationship between myself, the work and the listener. In short, giving away my music over the years has proven to be life-giving practice.”

Josh Garrels is a full-time musician with a wife and three children, why would he give away the very product of his work in this manner? The answer can be found in the data, or actually, the answer is the data. With each free download given away over the years on Bandcamp and NoiseTrade, Garrels has obtained an email address and often a postal code.

[Why Email Newsletters Are Still a Vital Marketing Tool for Musicians]

Over the past five years Josh Garrels has built up a mailing list of well over 200,000 fans by giving away almost 450,000 free downloads. ‘Free’, like a download, CD, or LP, is just another music format for Garrels. Giving away his music in exchange for an email address via Bandcamp and NoiseTrade has been a reliable way to get his music heard and to help grow his mailing list — and resulting fanbase — well beyond the norm.

For his most recent project Home, Garrels opted for a featured promotional spot within one of NoiseTrade’s mailers which goes out to the platform’s over 1.3 million subscribers. His album was also featured on NoiseTrade’s homepage for a full week.

Even with the giveaway the album still charted on Billboard. During the first week, 6,500 digital copies of Home were sold putting it at #83 on the Billboard Top 200, #46 on the Billboard Top Albums, and #19 on the Digital Albums charts.

Let’s look at how all this translated into revenue and data for Garrels:
[NOTE: For sake of simplicity some numbers were rounded and all sales were attributed to iTunes.]

iTunes

  • 6,500 albums sold week 1 x $10 = $65,000 gross revenue
  • $65,000 x 0.7 = $45,500 net revenue paid by iTunes to Garrels’ distributor
  • # of emails/postal codes provided by iTunes = 0

NoiseTrade

  • 45,000 free albums downloaded week 1
  • $25,000 (net to artist) tips collected from 3,800 fans
  • # of emails/postal codes provided by NoiseTrade = 45,000

Total Net Download Income for Week 1
iTunes $45,500 + NoiseTrade tips $25,000 = $70,500

Garrels did give up some revenue by making his new album available for free download via NoiseTrade. But not as much as you think. The trick is estimating how many of the 45,000 downloaders would have bought on iTunes had the free download not been available. I believe it is realistic to assume that less than 10% would have bought via iTunes.

NoiseTrade has provided some details on week one tips that helps shed some light on these downloaders. The suggested tip amount was $10, but gross tips received totaled $31,250 ($25,000 net to the artist) from 3,800 downloaders. So, even among the tippers, downloaders weren’t quite generous enough to average out to $10 per tipped download. Still, for the sake of argument, let’s assume 10,300 total download sales (6,500 actual sales + 3,800 downloaders who tipped).

Josh Garrels on NoiseTrade

What If Scenario – No Free Downloads in Week 1

  • 10,300 estimated albums sold week 1 x $10 = $103,000 gross revenue
  • $103,000 x 0.7 = $72,100 net revenue paid by iTunes to Garrels’ distributor
  • # of emails/postal codes provided by iTunes = 0

Under this scenario Garrels would have netted just $1,600 more in revenue, but would have forsaken the 45,000 emails collected via NoiseTrade.

Data or Money
NoiseTrade was founded in 2008 as a way for musician Derek Webb to reach, connect, and engage with his fans when his record label wouldn’t support him in that effort. Webb was able to get his music heard, mount tours, and sustain his career with his ever growing mailing list. A mailing list built by giving away his music.

I asked Webb for his thoughts on utilizing ‘free’ as Garrels did with this release:

Money is just a commodity, a finite resource. It’s the nature of money that you get it, you spend it, and you have to find more. There’s no long-term asset to having had money once it’s gone. Data, on the other hand, is a reusable resource, and for that reason, you’ll net a lot more revenue getting data for content than getting money for it. If you have meaningful connections with your fans, supported by data, you can activate those fans over and over again. If you’ve done your job building that tribe, finding your true fans, not only will they help when you ask, they’ll give more than you ask. If you own the data…the money will always follow.
— Derek Webb – Musician/Founder and President, NoiseTrade

Data Deep Dive
Let’s look at the mailing list data using actual numbers provided by Garrels a few days ago. Releasing his new album as a free download on NoiseTrade increased his email list by almost 10% in one week. Don’t fall into the trap thinking that isn’t a big increase. When you realize that it translates to over 18,000 new people to engage with and market to over the long term, you can’t help but be impressed.

193,269 mailing list size before the release
48,451 emails collected via NoiseTrade
(28,856) emails already subscribed
(1,262) emails previously on list, but previously unsubscribed so not added
———————–
211,595 mailing list size after release

211,595 – 193,269 = 18,326 new emails acquired via NoiseTrade release

The free and open release process allows the fan to choose how they support the artist. The sharing, streaming, and selling approach that Josh Garrels chose for Home provides him both short-term and long-term monetary gains without one being at the expense of the other. The bottom line is that owning the conversation between artist and fans along with recurring access to the fans is easily more valuable to the artist over time.
– Chris Moon – Artist Manager/Vice President of Creative and Operations, NoiseTrade

Leveraging the Fan Data Immediately
Garrels has an upcoming tour that will see him playing 1,000+ capacity rooms in Chicago, New York, and Philadelphia along with other dates scheduled across the country. Unlike the conventional email-for-media exchange, the NoiseTrade platform collects geographic data via postal codes. Garrels now has 45,000 emails with up-to-date geographic information, 18,000 of which are brand new fans that he can market to for this tour. More people to target via email and Facebook ads to fill up those rooms with fans that are already enjoying his new album. That’s real money that can be repeated and built upon tour after tour, season after season, year after year.

Growing the Fan Data into Fan Relationships
When asked if he would repeat the giveaway process, Garrels responded “I’ll always give away my music in one form or another.”

As the industry transitions from downloads to streaming, utilizing ‘free’ as a format helps bridge the resulting gap. A smart artist can invest in themselves, strategically giving up a chunk of the revenue from near-term sales, by trading music for fan data. Fans want to consume the music in their own way these days. Some fans will want to stream, some will want to buy, some will want to tip on a free download, and a lot of people will just want to hand over their email address. The only method of consumption that has real long-term value is the one that provides the artist with truly actionable data — an email address and a postal code. While the heated debate over streaming payouts continues fan data is where the true value of music consumption lies.

Artist manager Emily White of Whitesmith Entertainment has wisely called a mailing list “an artist’s retirement plan.” It’s true because a mailing list enables an artist to build a strong and mutually beneficial relationship with their fans. A strong relationship will pay dividends to the artist year after year after year.

Bandzoogle websites have built-in mailing lists and all the tools you need to step it up. Sign up free now!​


This is a guest post by Berklee Online music business instructor Chandler Coyle. Chandler is one-half of the fan experience agency Music Geek Services and is also the publisher of the The Coyle Report, a free weekly music marketing newsletter.

Band Website Inspiration: Clean Design & Photography Make a Great Site!

Who: Ron Block
What: Bluegrass-country
Where: Nashville
Why their website rocks: Ron Block uses a clean, modern theme for his website. The black-and-white header image, which matches the album art for his upcoming release, really sets the tone for the site.

The graphic design across his site looks great, and it all ties into the new album. This kind of branding creates a strong message in the visitor’s mind, and provides consistency that he can bring to other marketing materials! Plus, by using one of our responsive themes, his site looks great on all devices.

On his homepage, we love how Ron uses features to create an easy-to-read layout. The news updates and tour dates flow well, and the two-column layout makes the information easy to find.

His use of nice layout options continues on his Store page. First, he set up a three-column layout for three albums up top. Then, his DVDs are listed side-by-side at the bottom of the page for customers.

The site also hosts a lot of great information. From a press release about the new record on the homepage, to a list of music credits, Ron's site has content for new and longtime fans! And his regular blog updates not only keep visitors updated, but these updates also help his site rank higher in search engine results.

Check out his great site at ronblock.com!

Build your own professional website in minutes that looks great on all devices. Try Bandzoogle free now!

5 Perfectly Acceptable Reasons to Turn Down a Gig

5 Reasons to turn down a gig

This post originally appeared on the Sonicbids Blog

It's tempting, especially as a new band, to say yes to every show you're offered. You want to take advantage of every opportunity you get to make a mark in your local scene. But even groups just starting out can't or shouldn't accept every gig they're extended. Sometimes a show can actually be detrimental to your efforts.

With the exception of opening for another band or artist with a significant following, which is a blessing you should always enthusiastically respond to with a resounding yes, here are a handful of situations in which it's totally reasonable to turn down a gig.

1. A member can't be there

Unless it's a recurring issue, which is another thing altogether, don't temporarily replace a band member because he or she can't perform at a particular gig. There are times in which this might be appropriate, but generally, it's not. The member in question might feel jilted, which could cause internal problems, and the stand-in won't know the music as well as your bandmate does. If you must have an outsider fill in, be sure that person has plenty of time to rehearse alone and with the group, and check with the person who can't make it to be sure that he or she isn't going to resent everyone else for taking the gig.

[14 Rules for Being a Good Bandmate]

2. It's a last-minute gig

When a band cancels just before a show, you could be called upon to perform in their stead. That's great that the booking agent or venue owner thought of you, right? If you haven't rehearsed properly, though, think twice about accepting the gig. Preparation is paramount to a successful set. Consider that against the opportunity before making a decision.

3. The show is at a problematic venue

Not every venue is right for every band, and if you've already learned that a certain spot is wrong for you, avoid playing there again. You should definitely be cautious about writing off particular venues, of course, but once you've decided one doesn't work for you – whether it's because of bad sound, the wrong regular crowd, or something else – don't go back.

[What to Do When Venue Staff Treats Your Band Like Crap]

4. It's too close to another show you've already scheduled

Two shows too close together is not ideal, especially if you're a band with a smaller following. It's very likely that your crowd will be split between the two dates, so you'll probably get two mediocore turnouts instead of a single, sizable one. Don't just check that the date you're asked about is open, make sure you aren't already slated for another night nearby, too.

[How to Get a Booking Agent to Book Your Band]

5. There's no money involved, and you've already played for free

Playing for zero pay is something most fledgling bands do. Venue owners and booking agents often want to be sure you can bring out a crowd before they commit to paying a band or artist. Not only can you gain their trust this way, but also you'll probably play for a bigger crowd if there's no door charge.

You can only do this for so long, though. If you believe you've already proven your pull, don't continue performing for free. Negotiate some degree of payment based on the turnouts you've garnered thus far.

[Making the Transition From Playing Unpaid Shows to Earning a Living From Gigging]

Your band works hard to put on a great show. We work hard so you can make a great band website, easily and affordably. Build your own Bandzoogle website in minutes. Sign up free now!


Jhoni Jackson is an Atlanta-bred music journalist currently based in San Juan, Puerto Rico, where she juggles owning a venue called Club 77, freelance writing and, of course, going to the beach as often as possible.

Bandzoogle Team Meetup This Week!

Bandzoogle team meetup 2015

Reuniting and it feels so gooooood! This week the Bandzoogle family is getting together for our annual meetup. 

Bandzoogle team photo

This is where we brainstorm new things we can do for our members (2014 Bandzoogle recap: Our biggest year ever), enjoy each other’s company like normal co workers, and make up funny songs about ourselves.

As you know, the Bandzoogle offices are spread around the globe (Take a Look Inside Bandzoogle’s Lavish Offices Around the World!), so getting some face time is important for us and you, too!

So for the next few days live chat may be unavailable, but all email inquiries will be responded to as usual while the support team take turns between rounds of campfire karaoke. 

Bandzoogle campfire karaoke

We are excited for a great year of new features and designs for our members, and this gathering lays the groundwork.

Thanks, and have a great week everyone!

- Team BZ

Website Design Inspiration: Record Label Sargent House

Record Label Home page

Who: Sargent House
What: Record Label and Management Company
Where: Los Angeles, California
Why their website rocks: Simple, sleek, and easy to navigate. The Sargent House website is a beautiful example of how to organize information on multiple artists, while making it look and sound good!

[Learn how to build a Record Label Website]

Taking full advantage of our image-driven theme Vesper, their Homepage features a large slideshow with stunning shots of their artists. By using a mix of live shots and great promo shots, it's immediately clear their artists are professional and successful.

Then, the website menu does the talking. Clear and well-organized, it allows visitors to find exactly what they want when landing on the site.

Sargent House also puts a lot of work into promoting their artists. To emphasize each one, they have a page dedicated per artist on their website. Each of these pages has contact information for the artist, as well as social media links, images, discography, videos, news, and events.

Band website Russian Circles

On those artist pages, they of course also link out to each artist’s own website, many of which are on Bandzoogle too! Check out some these amazing websites for their artists built with Bandzoogle:

http://marriagesband.com

http://www.russiancirclesband.com

http://www.wovenhandband.com

http://myletsmusic.com

http://deafheaven.com

They also dedicate a page to new releases as a way to promote the music being released on their label. On this page you’ll find hi-res album covers, music players, videos, and links to listen and buy.

To generate even more music sales, Sargent House includes a Discography page, with subpages for each year. These pages neatly represent every album with an image, artist name, and release date. With links included for vinyl, CD, or digital options, the music is easy to purchase.

Record label website discrography

The contact page for their website contains a few important links. Up top, text that directs anyone looking to contact a specific artist to their pages, will help weed out artist inquires. Next, they include a large text link to their Submissions page to be sure bands read through their policies.

Finally, they include a mail form with specific parameters to make sure the email they receive is easy to look through. Plus, adding a mailing list signup to this page is a great way to increase their signups!

Check out this stylish and effective record label website at: http://sargenthouse.com

Build a professional website for your record label that's easy to update, and sell music & merch commission-free. Try Bandzoogle free now!

How to Build a Record Label Website

How To Build a Website for your Record Label

Whether you’re an established label, or you’ve just signed your first band, your website is a vital part of your marketing strategy. Your website is your hub online where fans, industry, and media can discover and quickly connect with your artists.

So here are some tips to help you build and organize an effective website for your record label!

Key Elements for a Record Label Website

Homepage

Your homepage should be fairly simple. Use hi-res photos of your artists in a static or slideshow header so your visitors will know they’ve come to the right place.

Next, use a call-to-action to bring attention to the most important thing you’d like to highlight. This could be an upcoming event, a new video, or recent album release for one of your artists.

Then add a Blog feature with text and images to showcase your recent news in an eye-catching way. Update this regularly to make fans return to see what's new! For even more up to the minute news, use a Twitter feed on one side of the page.

And be sure to place a mailing list signup form right on the Homepage. Offer an incentive like a free download of an exclusive song to encourage visitors to sign up! That way you can follow-up by email with your latest label news, new album releases and upcoming tour dates for your artists.

[Why Email Newsletters Are Still a Vital Marketing Tool]Record Label website

About

Who are you? Why did you start a label? Are you a musician yourself? Or just a total music geek? How did you discover the bands on the label? What inspired you to sign them? Use the About page to tell the story of why and how your record label was created.

You should also make it easy for industry and media to contact you. Include some kind of call-to-action at the bottom of the page, which can be a contact form, or even just your email address.

Want to make it more visually appealing? Add an Instagram gallery to the About page to seamlessly add a nice visual element that will automatically update with new images.

Artists

One of the most visited pages on your label's website will be the Artists page. Make sure it represents your label well by creating an organized page with easy to find information on all of your artists.

One option is to add images in a 3-column layout, and link each image to a subpage with more information about that artist.

On those subpages, add a short bio, some hi-res images, a few of their latest and greatest tracks, and a video. Add their social media links, as well as contact information for booking agents.

[How to Get a Booking Agent to Book Your Band]

However, if your label is just starting out, you could simply use a single page using a 2-column layout, with images and descriptive text side by side.

Record Label artists pageShows

Use a Calendar to list all upcoming tour dates for your artists. Bandzoogle has a built-in events feature where you can display upcoming shows in several formats, and sell tickets commission-free.

[Sell tickets for shows commission-free directly through your website]

You can also use our Bandsintown feature to display show dates for each band separately.

Store

Looking to sell music and merch for your artists? Set up a Store page to sell digital tracks, CDs, vinyl, and T-shirts commission-free. If one of your artists is dropping a new album soon, set it up for pre-order and sell it in advance to generate buzz.

Want to clear out old stock? Offer music and merch at sale prices to get people buying!

Submissions

Are you actively looking for new artists for your record label? If so, add a page that outlines the format that you will accept for demos. Be sure to address some FAQs as well, such as the genre of artist, what kind of experience they should have, where they have played shows, and what kind of a crowd they can draw.

If you are not seeking submissions, some text here indicating that you are not currently accepting clients will help clarify things for bands contacting your label.

Record label contact page

Contact

Include a contact form to accept inquiries about your record label. Add a link to your Submissions page to be sure people have read what you are looking for before they submit an inquiry. Then add an email address for any separate staff: management, booking inquires, and press.

Build a professional website for your record label that's easy to update, and sell music & merch commission-free. Try Bandzoogle free now!

17 ways to make money selling tickets on your website

17 ways to make money selling tickets on your website

With our new built-in ticketing feature, you can now sell tickets through your website commission-free! This not only makes it easier to make more money, but also stay in touch with fans who buy tickets directly from you. Ticketing companies not only take a % of your sales, but often don’t share the valuable data of who is buying your tickets.

[Sell Tickets for Shows Directly Through your Website]

Now, the first thing that comes to mind with ticket sales is selling tickets for large concerts, but that’s just the beginning! Here are 17 more ways you can grow your band’s bank account by using the new ticket sales feature:

  1. Regular gigs - You don’t need to be a famous band to sell tickets. You can offer tickets for any gig you’d like right from your website. As an incentive to buy earlier, you can offer a discount to those buying tickets from your website. Bandzoogle member, Michael Tracy, is also smart to mention there are no processing fees with this option. This is a big plus for customers especially if you’ve seen the fees some of the big ticketing companies are charging!

    Michael Tracy

  2. Ticket bundles - Another plus to selling tickets online is that you can increase the price to cover the cost of admission to the gig + a CD or T-Shirt. Bundling makes customers feel like they are getting extra value. Plus it’s fun to receive something cool at the door when they get to the gig!

  3. Special events - You can double or triple your profits by selling tickets to special events like a New Year’s Celebration, St. Patrick’s Day Bash, or special guest musician performances. You can even negotiate a little something with the venue if they add in a free drink ticket or appetizer for all ticket holders.

  4. Autographs and photos - As an add-on event you can set a time at the end of the gig for fans to receive autographs or pictures. Frame it as a VIP exclusive and even if you charge $10 a person, you’ll be bringing in more money that would’ve been left on the table.

  5. Fundraisers and Benefits - Making money for the band is great, making money to help others is even better! You can offer to perform for free at benefit events such as Cancer Awareness Walks, Diabetes Awareness Galas, or similar events. Then on your website you can sell tickets to the event where all proceeds go towards the charitable organization like BZ member Anielle Reid has done. Heck, you can even do a regular gig every now and then and let fans know you’re donating proceeds to a cause close to the band’s heart. This allows them to also get to know more about you and what causes you’re passionate about.

    Anielle Reid

  6. Workshops - Think of topics your band members have experience with such as how to get the press to notice your band, how to book a paid tour, how to crowdfund your next album (hint: anything that helps others make money is a hit!). At the end of the workshop, maybe play a few tunes for the participants. Who knows, you may gain a few unlikely fans there!

  7. Group lessons - If you have teaching skills, consider setting up some group lessons and selling tickets for each event. You can even hold it in locations like a recording studio, or museum and charge a bit more for the cool factor. [10 Ways to make more money selling music lessons on your website]

  8. Album launch - Fans love it when their favorite band or artist comes out with new music. Let them share in your excitement each time you release a new album. Plan a festive album launch party and sell tickets. During the event play a few tracks from your new album, throw in some older tunes and give out a few free CD’s. BZ member Hannah Jane Kile does a great job here by including other artists at the celebration as well.

    Hannah Jane Kile

  9. Industry mixer - If you’ve been in the biz for awhile, chances are you’ve made some great contacts. Sell tickets to a special mixer that brings all the local players to the table. You can invite music industry professionals, other artists, music engineers, venue owners and the like. This is another effective way to make new contacts and forge new partnerships in the process.

  10. Writers lounge - Even the best writers experience writer’s block, or simply need a new perspective. Hold a special invitation only night and invite (for a small entrance fee) all the songwriters in your local area. Provide some nourishing snacks and collab on new song ideas.

  11. Fan appreciation - Every once in awhile it’s nice to show your fans how much you care. Hold a FREE fan appreciation night in honor of their support. This doesn’t mean you can’t make money from this event though! You can sell raffle tickets for a nominal fee for things like autographed CD’s and merch. You could even throw in a few one of a kind items like a rough draft of your songwriting process, drumsticks from your biggest show, or you singing their voicemail greeting.

  12. Fan exclusives - In addition to the free fan appreciation event, you can offer a limited number of VIP tickets for advance purchase. Think about how excited you’d be if you had access to your favorite musicians studio session, backstage greenroom, or a private listening party in their home! You can provide the same feeling to your fans by offering VIP exclusives into the life of a musician. After the main free event, gather the VIP’s together for a VIP meet and greet to give them a peek into your daily life as a rockstar. This is a perfect time to offer higher priced tickets to only a select few superfans.

  13. Festivals - The festival circuit is becoming more popular every year, so now’s a great time to jump on board. Once you’re signed up as a performer you can sell tickets for the festival right from your website. Or if you plan your own festival, you can set it up to sell full passes to the entire event. Here's a great example by BZ member Culture Fest WV.

    Culture Fest WV

  14. Local showcase - Instead of booking a bunch of shows only for your band, think about partnering up with other bands in your genre to showcase local talent. For more publicity, you can even check in with your chamber of commerce and make it a summer series.

  15. Battles and open mic contests - Charge a competition submission fee for anyone who wants to show off their talent at an open mic event. Or for something even more interesting, follow the lead of Bandzoogle members ‘That Awful Rhythm’ and go head to head with other local talent. Battle of the bands or freestyle rap contests are a crowd pleaser and one many fans would love to attend.

    That Awful Rhythm

  16. Pre-gig meetup and after party - Give fans the opportunity to meet with the band before the concert starts. Let them be part of soundcheck, the pre-gig formalities and toast to a great show. Then afterwards, let them hang with you for the after party! BZ members, Members Only 80's Band, gets the party started with this cool festival pre-party.

    Members Only

  17. Live video recording party - If you plan on doing a live in concert CD or DVD, charge a small fee and invite fans to be part of your live video audience. Promote it as a chance to be part of the video and fans will be thrilled to be involved.

Once you get in the mode of selling tickets you can even combine a few ideas together like BZ member Patrick Lehman did here for his Album Launch party.

Not only is he selling tickets from his website, but he’s also setting some of the proceeds aside for charity, including special guests, and giving a free CD to each ticket holder.

Patrick Lehman


Making money as a musician can be tough. That's why you keep 100% of your hard-earned revenues when you sell music, merch & tickets through your Bandzoogle website. Sign up free now!

 

[VIDEO] How to sell music online with Bandzoogle Part 5- Digital Products

In Part 5 of this video series, we show how easy it is to sell music videos, PDFs, sheet music and other digital products online with your Bandzoogle website.

Using our Store feature, your fans can shop securely using their credit card, debit card, or PayPal account. All merch sales go directly into your PayPal account and are commission-free!

With Bandzoogle’s Store feature, you can:

  • Sell files like music videos, PDFs, sheet music, and other digital products commission-free
  • Sell t-shirts, posters, mugs, and other band merch commission-free
  • Set the price
  • Offer sale prices (Pro members)
  • Track inventory (Pro members)
  • Choose between List & Grid display formats
Ready to sell digital products & band merch online commission-free with Bandzoogle? Sign up free now!

[VIDEO] How to sell music online with Bandzoogle Part 4- Download Codes

In Part 1 of this series, we showed you how to sell Digital Albums. Part 2 was about selling CDs & Vinyl Records. And Part 3 covered selling band merch through your website.

With Part 4, we show how easy it is to create download codes for your music through your Bandzoogle website. You can print them as stickers, or save the codes as a file and print your own download cards to sell at live shows. Download codes are also integrated with the mailing list, so you can send out email blasts with a built-in free track in just a few clicks!

With Bandzoogle’s music players, you can:

  • Create download codes (Pro members)

  • Sell digital albums, EPs, and individual tracks

  • Add lyrics to each song

  • Set custom preview clips

  • Set the price

  • Offer free downloads

  • Offer free downloads in exchange for an email address

  • Let fans pay what they want

  • Report sales to SoundScan (Pro members)

  • Accept album pre-orders (Pro members)

  • Offer sale prices on albums & songs (Pro members)

  • Easily share albums & songs to Facebook and Twitter

Build your own professional website in minutes and start selling your music commission-free with Bandzoogle. Sign up free now!

How to sell more beats online using discount codes

How to sell more beats online using discount codes

Bandzoogle’s latest Store feature update lets you create, manage, and share discount codes with your fans and customers who shop through your website. [New: Discount codes for your music & merch store]

As a beats producer, discount codes can be a helpful tool to increase your sales. Here are a few tips to get you started using discounts as part of your promotional strategy!

Why would you want to discount beats?

Providing exclusive rebates through a discount code can make new clients more keen to use your beats.  It can give you a pricing edge on the competition, and it can make your existing customers even more happy with the service you provide.  

Depending on the licenses you’re applying to your sales, beats can be a higher investment purchase. So a discount code can give customers the feeling of getting great value at a really good price, while helping you sell more of your beats.

And beat producers aren’t the only business that offers discounts on products they sell. It’s a tried and true method to help you clinch more sales, and make the relationship with your client base that much stronger.

What are the goals for your discount codes?

Having some idea of what you want your discount codes to do for you is a really good start. Some common goals when you’re going to share them out are:

1 - You’re looking to increase your short term sales.

2 - You’d like to reward loyal customers.

3 - You want to promote new beats.

Once you know your goals for your promo codes, you can plan how to distribute them.

1. Boosting short term sales

If your goal is to increase short term sales, then you’ll probably need a more ‘time based’ promotional campaign. Example: ‘For a limited time, get 15% off’ and send that out through an email blast and across social media.

[Why Email Newsletters Are Still a Vital Marketing Tool for Musicians]

The discount code option lets you manage multiple codes, and this includes the ability to set the codes as ‘active’ or ‘inactive’. So if your limited time offer is 1 week, when the time is up for your promotion, click the discount code option in the music feature, then the code in your list. From there you can then uncheck the ‘active’ option.

This will disable the code so it can’t be applied to future purchases from your site. Until of course, you decide to run another discount promotion and re-activate it!

2. Reward loyal customers

If you’re looking to reward your loyal customers with an exclusive discount, it will likely involve reaching out in an email campaign and providing the discount code in your message. Your loyal customers should DEFINITELY be on your list already!

All Bandzoogle plans come with a built-in mailing list tool! Sign up free now.

These are customers that you’re hoping will keep using your services and buying beats from you, so in your message:

3. Promote new beats

Top flight beat producers are constantly releasing new material on their websites. Promoting new material can give your customers the sense of ‘I found it first’. Giving them a deal on new tracks with a discount code can make those customers feel like ‘I found it first, AND I’m getting a great deal on it too!’

You should first consider posting all of your newer beats to their own separate page on your website with a track list. This way, you can simply swap out older tracks for new ones as you produce them. This can also add to the exclusive feeling when you let your customers know about your new productions.

Like discount promotions to loyal customers, sending a discount code from an email campaign is a great place to start. But you’ll probably want to go for more reach than just your mailing list. Be sure to also share your discount code across social media, like your Facebook and Twitter pages.  

Bandzoogle now provides an ‘in status’ player on Facebook. So when you promote the track and the promotion code by clicking a ‘share’ button on your music player, customers can preview your new beats right from their Facebook feed. Again, don’t forget to include the code with a quick commentary about the promotion and discount when you post the status!

Naming your discount codes

When you create a discount code, try to keep the name easy to remember. Your customers will find it pretty simple to apply a discount from your site checkout. But don’t make it harder by having them type out a long and complicated discount code!

Avoid special characters and spaces as well. This will help make sure there are no mistakes when entering it. And make sure the code reflects the promotion you’re running, like MORE4LESS for your short term goals. Or BEATSVIP for your loyal (and hopefully repeat) customers.

How much should you discount?

Every retailer that uses discounts, not just beat producers, can struggle with this. The core reason you’re providing a discount on anything you sell is based on your goals you set for the promotion.

Ultimately, you want to make a reasonably attractive offer without completely giving away your goods for free. So discounts - unless you’re going out of business - should never be excessively high.

Think about it. If you sell an exclusively licensed beat for $300, that’s not total profit you’re gaining.  There are costs involved, including your production time, equipment, and skills. So consider those when offering a discount. Anywhere from a 10-30% discount is reasonable, depending on the campaign goals.

Two rules to remember are: if you give too low of a discount, it’s not attractive enough to convince a customer to purchase. If the discount is too high, you might come across as too desperate for a sale.  

Your customers are paying for professional work. So slashing prices too heavily can make your customers think your product’s quality is not up to par. Be reasonable, without feeling like you won’t make anything in the process.

We hope this helps you sell more beats from your websites!

Build your own professional website in minutes and offer discount codes to sell your beats! Sign up free with Bandzoogle now.