How to sell your music or audio ? Part 2

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How to sell your music or audio ? Part 2 -----

Jan 31, 2014 at 3:15 AM | RadioDanny  in Industry

Anyway less of the chit chat and let me explain to you in brief terms what you can do
to get your music on CD and in the stores.
Having over 25 years experience in music distribution I always keep getting asked,
what’s the best way to get my music production out in stores without major backing,
or being signed by a record company. I cannot tell you everything I know, it might
OK, so you decided on making a music production but not sure what to do know.
Well your first step should be to have your completed music recording(s) mixed,
reason being I’m sure you want your recording to sound as you intended, this is
something that you can possibly do yourself if you are competent enough with mixing
music recordings. You would need the correct software package for this and you will
find there are dozens to choose from; it would be a good idea to do some research on
which package is best for you.
Another option would be for you to use a professional studio that is use to doing this
type of work, if you think you’re not competent to do it yourself, I would let the
professional do it for you.

Once you have your music recordings mixed you will need to have your music
recordings mastered, the same process applies as with having your music recording
Your music recordings needs to be mastered in order for it to be acceptable for
manufacturing process, once it has gone for manufacturing you will not be able to
change anything. It would require you to supply a new master, which I’m sure you
So there you have it, you now have your music recording(s) mixed and mastered and
ready for production.
You now need to think of presentation; how you want your artwork to look. You want
You will have to get a design of some kind made which will represent your music; the
key is presentation. You have to think would you pick it up, a CD in a store just by
seeing it on a shelf without listening to it?
There are various options open to you, but the main thing is that it looks good or
stands out among the rest of CD’s on the shelf.
There are dozens of artwork packages available for creating CD artwork, ranging
from the basic to the professional package for doing all sorts of artwork and graphic
designs; but you may not want to do this yourself. You can always let the professional
graphic designer do it for you, in which case you should be at hand to direct your
graphic designer as to what sort of job you want done. You should have in mind the
way it should look, and make sure it’s what you want and not what your graphic
designer wants, make sure you are happy with the finished product.

There are a few things you need to include in your artwork, but by looking at other
CD’s you should get an idea of how it needs to be presented.
You will need to ensure that you have your; Music Track(s) details and any necessary
credits in place as well as any contact details which you use i.e. Tel No:, Email, Web
You will also need a registered Barcode or UPC No: as this could save you money in
the long term. A Barcode or UPC No: can be obtained online or through a good
graphic designer or print shop,
You will need to have your Barcode or UPC embedded into your artwork. You will
also need a catalogue number which should be on the CD artwork and the onbody

Small note, if you send your CD to a distributor/wholesaler without a Barcode or UPC
you will be charged per CD for this service, so best to do this at the artwork design
stage if not, the Barcode or UPC will have to be stuck to outside of CD case.
This was the case I experienced and ended up having to pay for Barcode or UPC
being stuck on my product, would have been cheaper if I got the barcode embedded
This brings me to the manufacturing process which is pretty straight forward.
Firstly you have to decide how many CD’s you want for your first production run, it
may be a case that it is only for promotion first time round, but you should by now
know your requirements.
In my experience CD pressing plants have a minimum amount you can press which is
usually somewhere between 500 -1000 units, you may find some manufacturers will
do less so it’s just a ball park figure.
So unless you have pre-orders, I would be on the side of caution regarding this and do
the minimum unless you require more.
Upon manufacturing your CD you will have to get artwork templates which pressing
plant should supply you with before you send in your job, reason being the templates
will vary from manufacturer to manufacturer. Once you have obtained your templates
you will need to pass it to your graphic designer if that was your choice for doing
your artwork, the graphic designer will need to insert your artwork into templates
obtained from manufacturer, also it will include CD onbody disc, bleed area for
trimming the finished artwork and any other information you may need.
Once you supply the manufacturer with all job parts and info, you should get a
delivery date when the job will be completed. This should take between 1-3 weeks
depending on how busy the manufacturer is at time of taking your job, you should get
your CD back all packaged with shrink wrapping and ready to sell.
Now down to the distribution of your CD, well as you can imagine you have various
outlets available you will have to do some research. You have places like Amazon,
CD Baby , Super D, HMV to name a few which will distribute your CD, which brings
me back to Barcodes or UPC. You can sell to major outlets but without a Barcode or
UPC you will be charged per CD to have these placed on your product which isn’t a
bad thing if you are only selling a small quantity, but if you have a hit and are selling
a lot of units this will eat into your profit, you don’t want to be paying for Barcode or
CD’s with a Barcode or UPC for a fraction if you embed this at the artwork stage.
When selling to a distributor, you must remember you will get paid less than the
actual selling price in store, the reason being the distributor will want to make
something i.e. money.

Carry out some research on prices you will be charged for their service, and any
hidden clauses you may not know about, as some distributors will charge a storage fee
for the privilege of having your stock in their warehouse. If your CD is not a good
seller it could be expensive in the long term having your CD’s sitting in a warehouse
with not many sales.
This brings me to promoting your CD track(s)
It is possible you may want to do a test with the market to find out if you have a
possible hit or something that will sell enough units to make the project worth your
while and to proceed with.
You may want to do a promotional DJ mail out and see what reaction you get from
DJ’s that cover your genre of music. This can be a good gauge as to whether there
will be a buzz on your music, and it could indicate on how it will fair in the open
Make a good press release package, present it well and attach a reaction form with
your mail out so the recipient can give a fair assessment and honest opinion of your
If you have music that will be for mainstream go to places that will play that sort of
music, get to know the DJ’s they can make or break your project. If you have them on
side you are in the right direction.
You can use the social networking sites to promote your music Twitter, Facebook,
Myspace, Tublar are a few of the most popular sites at the moment, but this changes
all the time.
Make a video if possible which can easily be placed on youtube or similar video site,
use the blogs site if you can and any of the music channels on TV. This will help as
they are always looking for new material for their sites.
You have music magazines and newspapers which you can put adverts and articles in,
the possibilities are wide.
Why not ask your family and friends what they think of your music, get as many
opinions as possible. Also, if you can get any time on local or major radio stations
then do so, not forgetting you have 1000’s of internet radio stations. If you can get
details for them this is also another option.
Do you have a website? You should if you are serious about your music, you can use
email to send out promo’s digitally, with this method I have used, shorten track(s) to
avoid piracy.
Beginners Guide “How To Make It Into The Music Industry”
The whole point is that you need as many people as possible hearing your music, it’s
no use having distribution if no one knows about it, the more interest you can get the
better your chance of it being a success.
You have to remember that your distributor will not advertise your product unless you
are signed to them in some sort of way.
Well that’s the guide for getting your music out there in the wide open market without
aid of the major companies.


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March 07, 2015 - 9:07 AM
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