DIY is great but it doesn't have to mean Do It [All] Yourself. Having a knowledgeable publicist in your corner can make a big difference in growing your career as a musician. The following tips for working with publicists are a good starting point for building a successful relationship that should go far beyond simply paying for a service.
Bianca Valentino interviewed publicist Emily Kelly of Deathproof PR for her awesome interview blog "Conversations with Bianca". It's a wide-ranging interview and I've pulled out a few comments from Kelly related to her work with Deathproof PR in Australia.
4 Tips for Working with Publicists
1) Know Who You're Contacting & Why
"I’ve noticed that Deathproof is approached by a lot of young bands who email us with information about themselves, followed by the question – ‘so what do you do’? This always makes me laugh because I find it odd that they’d approach a company to ask for help when they’ve no idea what they do. It comes off as lazy and a wee bit insulting."
2) Be Realistic About Your Expectations
"The biggest nightmares occur when the artist or management’s expectations are disproportionate to our own. Working with an artist who believes they deserve only cover stories and breakfast radio is a tough time. Often you’ll see overseas management trying to call the PR shots in other countries when they don’t actually have an understanding of the Australian media landscape."
3) Return Calls or Emails
"I’ll answer just about every email that is sent to me, because I think it’s polite and being known as a prompt and efficient communicator can open lots of doors. I’m always infuriated when clients or peers totally fail to return calls or emails. Even if I get a one-line response asking me to politely fuck off, that’s fine, I just appreciate the 2 seconds it takes to reply."
4) Participate Fully in Campaigns
"One of the big ones [that can make or break a publicity campaign] would have to be the band’s willingness to participate. To make themselves available, be good interviewees, be as communicative as possible with their team and take our advice."
For some thoughts on publicity as well as the work of Emily Kelly and her Deathproof PR business partner Rebecca Reato, check out the interview.
Hypebot Senior Contributor Clyde Smith (Twitter/App.net) blogs about music crowdfunding at Crowdfunding For Musicians (@CrowdfundingM). To suggest topics for Hypebot, contact: clyde(at)fluxresearch(dot)com.