In this increasingly short term attention span world, music is becoming more disposable than ever. The raft of new technologies are great for a band who want to just get their music out there, but it also means that the artists who wants to ‘make it’ faces stiffer competition than ever. Not only are the label and A&R gatekeepers still there as always, those gatekeepers are being shouted at by more people than ever.
So, in a market dominated by marketability, one way in which you can make your music stand out is by not just concentrating on the music. It might sound weird (and don’t get me wrong, your music probably has to be brilliant too), but there needs to be something to set you apart. And ‘image’ could be one of those things.
A few things to bear in mind:
A) Image is not just about your music, your clothes or your artwork – it’s all three. Make sure there’s a common theme to look professional and consistent.
B) Don’t spend all your money on music alone. We know it’s expensive to get music recorded well, but I’m afraid blowing your budget on getting things recorded and then spending nothing on an amateur photoshoot and dull artwork design will leave your appeal lopsided.
C) Get into research mode. Don’t copy them, but think about your favourite artists and what makes them stand out apart from their music.
D) Try various things. You might think your decisions are always right when it comes to how you present yourself, but you might connect more with some outside help. Take some photos in different outfits, or try a couple of artwork designs, then ask your fans/followers which they like best. If you can connect with your existing audience right, you might be more likely to find a bigger one.
It shouldn’t be close to the top of the list in an ideal world, but the fact is that ‘image’ can be what gets your great music noticed. Spend some time developing it, and see where it takes you.
Picture courtesy of giantbomb.com