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Tight Budget Tips: Marketing With Less Than $100

1Having a solid marketing plan is essential to finding success as an independent artist, even if you have to do it on a budget. Here we offer some clever marketing tips for those musicians who may not have a massive wad of cash to throw at their career.

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Guest Post by Terence Jordan on Trill Trax

Often when asked what the plan is with marketing, songwriters shy away or don't have a plan. Independent artists can find themselves at a standstill, due to being intimidated by marketing. No matter where you are in your career, marketing your work should be a priority. It is essential to growth.

1 (1)Marketing is how people find out about you. Whether it is traditional radio or organic, here are some tips to help you out even if you’re on a tight budget.

1. Stickers

People love stickers. They can be simple or complex. The point with them is that they can be placed almost anywhere. If you're a fan, you may place a sticker on your laptop or a wall dedicated to concert gifts.
 
Imagine you’re driving and see your bands name on a sticker on a car. That is free exposure. How many times do you find yourself reading other folk’s bumper stickers at a red light? These little items can be found hidden in promo packages.
 
A few years ago I went to the hip-hop music festival A3C in Atlanta, GA. When our group left we received free promotional gift bags with various CD’s, flyers, magazines and of course stickers. A few of those stickers I kept and posted on my computer. It reminds me of the good time I had their.

Stickers are cost effective and can create a nostalgic memory for the consumer.

2. Contests

We’ve all been a part or heard about contests on the radio to win merchandise. You have to call in before a certain time listing all the songs to win. Contests are a great way to grab people’s attention but also get them active.
 
Some great contest winnings could be a gas card, gift card for Wal-Mart or maybe even opt to buy $50 (Any amount of fund) worth of groceries. Each one of these items is great. Try putting together a gift bag with items such as, a shirt, hoodie, wristband, stickers, and CD.
 
Contests should be used lightly though. You don’t want consumers to think you are trying to buy them into being your fan. Find unique fun ways to get consumers involved with the contest. That way they provide free promotion for your band. 

3. Wristbands

This is probably my second personal favorite. Wristbands show where you were, what you participated in and even can stand as a fashion statement. They are cheap to get printed and easy to distribute.

Get some of wristbands printed up with your catch phrase or bands name. Put a few on all the tables before you perform and collect the ones not taken after the set. No need to forget about the ones that didn’t get picked up. Make the most out of your money, recycle.
 
Along with your catchphrase or band name, include your bands social media info. If you use front and back then you’ve got more space to cover.

As a break in this article, please focus on a brand or logo that clearly dictates who you are and what your content represents. 

4. Posters

Imagine taking photos with fans before and after the show with your professional photographer. Once fans find that photo on your webpage, they may even share it on their social media accounts. Get a few posters printed with fans and mail it to them. A few 18x24 high resolution posters make fans feel special and even if they were not fans before, they may be now. 

5. T-shirts or Clothing

Of course this is the norm for many brands music and outside of music. Get with a graphic designer to generate a strong brand idea for you. Have something that stands out on the front, back or both. Give them out for free at parties or performances. There are plenty of silkscreen companies that can work with your budget.

Head over to B Major Prints if you are in Tallahassee, FL for high quality work. I've gotten work done here myself and can vouch for the quality. http://railroadsquare.com/item/b-major-prints-llc/ 

Overall, marketing is all about creativity. This is your brand, this is you. Express yourself best you can without breaking the bank from your current day job. DJ Khaled currently (2016) has Snapchat on lock with his keys to success advice and daily positive attitude. Comedian King Bach used Vine as a platform to showcase his acting and comedic skills. Urban rapper Plies has a huge following on Instagram for his risqué talks of humor. 

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