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The Bloodless Eye Transplant That Can Get You Signed
Imagine for a moment that you are a big label executive scouting out new talent to sign to your new roster of acts.
In front of you, you have two unsigned artists and you have one slot to fill.
Both artists have incredible stage presence, singing chops, killer moves, and can write songs that make people sing, dance and cry. To top it off, both artists have looks that will appeal to their target audience.
For all intents and purposes both artists have the same raw material that could make you look good to your bosses.
However in spite of all of this there are some serious differences.
Artist A has the following also going for them - They:
• Have sold 25,000 CDs on their own without a distribution deal, or even an “in store presence.”
• Consistently draw 300-700 fans to their prime gigs.
• Get great media coverage in advance of every major show.
• Make a generous percentage of their income off of merch sales.
• Have more than just a buzz on the streets… artist “A” has crazed fans actively working to promote their gigs.
• Know how to get actual radio play, even in today’s impervious conglomerate led radio market.
• Know how to sell tons of downloads without the help of iTunes.
• Have a “non-MySpace” website that draws thousands of visitors (not hits) each and every month.
Artist B has the following:
• Their good looks and the scooter they drove in on.
Now tell me, as a salaried employee for a big label who looks forward to receiving enough income to continue to lease their Lexus, and to make payments on their 3500 square foot house -- which artist do you think you would sign?
Remember your bosses rely on you to deliver the goods by “Discovering and Developing” new talent that will sell boatloads of records for your company,
So Which Artist Would You Choose?
With all things being equal, why would you choose one artist over the other in the first place?
Here’s why, because you know that if you give the exact same recording, marketing and distribution resources to both artists one artist is certain to give you - and your company - a guaranteed return on investment and the other has no such guarantee.
How Do You Know This?
Its called “Evidence Of Success.”
Band A can show you bottom line facts, figures and stats that prove that they will take what you are offering them in a label contract, and leverage it by adding it to what they are already doing.
Only now they will be using the same know-how they’ve already used to achieve their success, except now they will do so with more money behind them and bigger more powerful tools to use.
Can you see the difference?
I hope so. This little exercise is what I call the “Bloodless Eye Transplant.” It is a way to get inside the head of the label execs to see what they are looking for.
Now listen closely as I wrap this up -- the days of the “Artist Development Deal” are fading fast.
As you know development deals are where a label will sign an aspiring artist to develop them in hopes of building a “viable product” at some future point. Then when they artists under development are deemed to be ripe and ready for the pickin’ the label will finally back them up with marketing and distribution resources.
Why Are These Deals Going Away?
One word -- Budgets. With the drastic shifts occurring inside the music industry the big labels profit margins are getting squeezed, and this is forcing them to be more guarded and wise with their money.
This is precisely why you are seeing so many “flavor-of-the-week” artists being signed.
Fueled by the fear of making a mistake and losing money, labels are signing artists that match the sound of someone who has made it big already. This strategy – in their mind – eliminates some of the risk involved with signing new artists because the labels realize that people are already hungry for that flavor of music. No guesswork.
So, taking what you have just experienced with your bloodless eye transplant, you might want to sit down and ask yourself: “How can I take my very own evidence of success and package it to attract big label attention?”
Or if you have no evidence of success that is yet appealing to big labels then consider what skills and actions you will need to take to get some. Because frankly in today’s market having your own Evidence Of Success is the only guaranteed way to get yourself signed.