Posts Tagged ‘networking’

Related Article: Part 1 of “Cloverdayle on Networking in the Music Industry”

Cloverdayle with the Jason Aldean band

Make the most of Industry Networking

Winning a radio-hosted battle of the bands competition to open for Kenny Chesney was a huge opportunity for Cloverdayle.  Not only did they have a radio station promoting them as a new band, but they were also surrounded by big names in the country music business. Artists can make the most of these contacts by being personable, taking the time to learn from those they rub shoulders with, and as Cloverdayle iterated, having real conversations with real people. Additionally, Rachel Hamar suggests acting quickly. “When someone says, ‘Hey, let’s write,’ put it in your calendar while you’re talking about it,” she said explaining that taking care of business when it presents itself is the best way to create a relationship and tie down a commitment.  Whether this is done by immediately adding a contact to her phone with clear description of who that person is, or scheduling a meeting, Rachel Hamar says it is best to take advantage of such moments when they occur, rather than losing the opportunity later.

Don’t Understimate “Smaller” Contacts

Chad Hamar pointed out that industry contacts can come from the most unexpected places. He revealed how one of his music students put him in contact with former Brooks and Dunn band members, the guitarist Terry McBride ended up producing Cloverdayle’s first album, and a friend from junior high led the duo to open for country music artist, Lee Brice. Once key contacts and friendships are made, the Hamars continue to foster them through occasional emails and updates. The two often send out emails to Nashville friends, inviting them to join them at concerts or outings, when they know they’ll be visiting the area. Making the most of even the “smallest” or seemingly ordinary contacts helps drive an artist’s career.

Networking and self-promoting can seem daunting. Once artists build an industry presence, they have to continually build their fan-base and seek out networking opportunities through their contacts. There’s an art to doing so, as bands need to avoid alienating their audience with overly aggressive promotion. “You don’t want to offend people,” says Chad Hamar. To ensure artists maintain a positive relationship with their network, Cloverdayle suggests closely monitoring fan-base numbers and following “your gut.” If numbers drop, an artist will know they are doing something wrong and need to revise their approach.

See what Cloverdayle is up to.

Cloverdayle’s kickstarter project

Related Article: Social Media for Musicians: The best time to Post and Tweet

By Marzee Dyer
Sources:
Feb. 10. 2012 Interview with Cloverdayle
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Chad and Rachel Hamar of Cloverdayle
Chad and Rachel Hamar have been playing together for fourteen years, but didn’t found their band Cloverdayle until a rare opportunity in 2008. The two, who planned on attending a Kenny Chesney concert, won a battle of the bands competition and opened for Chesney during his 2008 Poets and Pirates Tour. It was their first performance as a country-rock duo. The two used that platform to connect with other industry professionals, which has led them to play with greats like Tim McGraw, Lady Antebellum and Jason Aldean. Networking in any industry improves a career, but it’s essential to survival in the music world. The Hamars have applied this skill and recently shared some insightful tips that helped propel them to where they are now: preparing to produce an album in Nashville with Jason Aldean’s band. This is the first of two blog posts focusing on Cloverdayle’s advice on networking in the music world.

Build A Web Presence

According to Cloverdayle, the first thing any artist needs is a web presence. The easiest way to start this is by using a Content Management System (CMS) like WordPress, Blogger, Drupal, or Joomla (note: not all CMSs are equal). The nice thing about using a CMS is that they are search engine friendly and allow artists to create a free and moderately customized site. The next step is to pay a web designer to create a completely unique site.

Key considerations when creating a band website are design and content. Music sites should be artistic without being overly complicated. Navigation should be clean. Analysis of popular band sites suggest artists provide touring schedules and behind-the-scenes content through blog posts and photos, while allowing visitors to listen to music and access song information and lyrics. Discussion Boards are also a key component to allow fans to bond while keeping them engaged in visiting the site on a regular basis. Many CMSs make adding a discussion forum easy by providing discussion forum plugins. However, a discussion board should not be attempted until a strong fan-base is built, as an empty forum will have negative impact on a band image.

Link to Social Media Platforms

Whichever way an artist goes, they need to be sure to use the website as a home base to link to other great platforms. Cloverdayle uses Facebook, Twitter, Youtube and Reverbnation. These are essential. Another place to expand your digital audience is through Google+. Daria Musk began using the Google Plus platform to share her music in the Summer of 2011 and now has over 950 thousand people in her circles. Her success has been featured in Billboard Magazine, she’s appeared on TEDtalks and recently performed at the Googleplex. The greater footprint an artist can leave on the internet through networking multiple channels, the greater their chances of being seen and heard.

Build Your Fan-base

Once a web presence is established, it’s time to build a fan-base. Cloverdayle recommends artists begin with personal friends, families and mailing lists. “Relationships are the most important thing,” says Chad Hamar of networking in the industry. He shared that they began by contacting their immediate circles and encouraged close family and friends to share their love of Cloverdayle with their contacts by mouth, email, tweeting, liking and posting. Once these contacts were visible through Cloverdayle’s various platforms, the country duo was able to interact with new fans on a more personal basis to foster those relationships and encourage further fan-base growth. They mainly do this through Twitter, Facebook and at their concerts. In addition to networking through close relationships, Cloverdayle was also sure to collect fan contact information at concerts. Having a fan email list can go a long way in keeping fans engaged with concert updates, contests and other promotional information.

Related Article: Part 2 of “Cloverdayle on Networking in the Music Industry”

By Marzee Dyer
Cloverdayle Interview: Feb 10, 2012