Learn From Your Fans Regarding CD Sales

This month, let's expand upon what we talked about in the previous
article, "Wait! Before You Write Your New Marketing Plan"
To create an effective promo book this year, you have to make detailed
notes of what worked for you and what didn't. Especially when it comes
to your live shows, your performance and the promotion you did for them.
We need to focus on what you learned from your previous ones and how you
can learn from your future ones. This is the only way you will get the
results you want.

So let's start by stating the obvious. We both know that more than 90% of
your current CD sales happen at shows. While there is currently nothing
wrong with that, we both know you are not generating enough money from
CD sales at your shows to quit your day job and do your music full time.
So let's talk about what you need to learn from your upcoming shows to
make a difference in not only how many CDs you sell but the performance,
the promotion and the new foundation you will need to build.

This year you will develop a proper mailing list. While I know most
artists, and probably yourself, have over promoted your mailing list
(meaning sent out an emailer about each and every show you are doing to
everyone on your current list) you will learn to build a mailing list
that makes sense. One that features the city, state and zip code where
the person lives, have they bought a CD, when they last came to a show
and even interesting facts about them. This way you can personalize the
email to the people on your list. Especially those closest to where you
are playing.

When promoting your shows measure the response you get in person before
and at the show. Make specific notes of the conversations you had when
giving out CD samplers. Find out what got people to the shows. Which
promotions worked and why. One of the most important things I teach in
detail in my workshops is to learn from your fans. Improve your "people skills." Understand what people see in
your music. What connects them to it.

The first step in doing that is to analyze the praise and rejection you
receive. Learn to ask your new fans what they liked at your shows. Was
it the verbal or visual part of your presentation? The same with
rejection. Why didn't they want to buy your CD? Find out how you didn't
connect with them. Analyzing praise and rejection is critical for you.
It will help you understand whether or not people see you as a "real

Being able to express to people, whether its the media or future fans
who you are as an artist and what you are trying to communicate with
your music is imperative.

If you want a successful career that will last at least 20 years, one
that will not only financially support you but where you truly impact
and influence others with your music, you must focus on developing your
ability to communicate who you are as an artist.

What to learn more? There's two ways. Join me at
www.MusicStrategies.com. In my workshops, I work personally with artists like yourself in teaching them the different strategies they need right now to sell more CDs and make an impact with their music.
Second, my new audio book, Tim Sweeney's Guide To Releasing Independent
Records Part 2, will give you insight into different strategies and ideas you can use that no one else teaches.

Author Tim Sweeney is head of Tim Sweeney & Associates, who are entering their 18th year of being, "the only true artist development company in the world."

Tim is one of the music industry's most sought after experts and consultants, and has written several influential books including "Tim Sweeney's Guide To Releasing Independent Records".

Tim Sweeney