How to Start Your Music Career As An Indie Artist

Once you are passionate about music, you can turn that into a career. Needless to say, the best job you could ever have in the world is one that doesn’t make you feel as if you were working. That’s certainly the case for any indie artist. You weren’t born into this world with this great talent and passion to let it turn to dust. Fortunately, the chances for solo musicians are fantastic in our modern times – thanks to the internet. And with all things possible via the internet, there are digital distribution companies. Learn more about the independent music distribution that won’t leave you waiting for a big label to discover your talent!

Consistency Is The Key

Just writing songs and doing some recordings won’t get you anywhere without a presence on the internet. Build a webpage to showcase yourself. Tell the world your story about how you found your love for music. Set up a blog on your webpage and get a talented photographer to take some shots of you. If you don’t know a photographer – and a professional one can be rather expensive – you should attempt to join meet-ups for photographers.

As you are an indie musician, there also are tons of indie photographers out there. They share their skills and knowledge at dedicated meet-ups that require the presence of models. None of these models is a pro either, most just do it for fun and it’s a perfect opportunity for musicians to join. Those photographers are usually a well-harmonized mix of professionals and aspiring photographers. Everyone has his own style, not all pictures will be great, but you usually end up with a good selection. You could also ask them to attend a live gig of yours to take some pictures of you on stage. As long as you mention which picture was taken by whom on your webpage, you can perfectly use them.

On your webpage you should, of course, also provide some of your music. Making videos has never been easier in these times either. It’d certainly be perfect if your videos went viral. However, it’s best to keep it simple. You can always make more elaborate videos at a later point. Most importantly about your webpage: create a mailing list. Send your fans tour dates and other hot news! Your webpage will also serve as a contact for digital distribution companies.

Social Media Is a Must

For private people, social media is not necessarily a must, but they play an important role in spreading the word about you. First of all, you’ll have to create a professional profile on all social media platforms. Keep your handles consistent so it’s easy to find you. Link all of those profiles back to your webpage. Whoever comes across your webpage can instantly follow you on any platform via the links you provide.

The hardest part to some might be to constantly create content on social media platforms. You can’t let your social media rest for several weeks in a row – at least not yet. Share photos when you’re writing or recording a new song. Take short videos with a peek view of your new songs. The tricky part on social media is to use the correct hashtags. Maybe you could benefit from an app that finds the most suitable hashtags for each post you make. Additionally, specific programs allow you to create new posts for several social media platforms. You won’t have to log in to each platform separately to send your new post. It’s definitely a huge time saver and you’ll have more time to do what you love doing.

Create Merchandise

Once people have heard about you and fallen in love with your unique musical talent, they will want to have merchandise. Selling merchandise is a nice side revenue you could implement directly into your webpage. You’ll only need a catchy graphic for the start with your logo. If you can’t come up with a great logo idea, you certainly have a creative friend who could give you a hand. It might be an idea to add the address of your webpage to merchandise.

The huge advantage is, above all, other people are promoting you by simply wearing a T-shirt or using your mug in their office. You don’t have to come up with an awful lot of design ideas at the beginning. Just like with the videos, keep it simple. Later on, you could create special designs for a particular song. The point is, digital distribution companies won’t sell merchandise for you, but you have to do it somewhere. Sell it at your live gigs!

Grow Your Fanbase In Different Platforms

Now, let’s come to the most important part of starting your music career as an indie artist. You need to earn money. As live gigs are getting less present and even more parts of our lives move online, you might be out of ideas as to what to do. Don’t be. There are tons of digital distribution companies whom you can contact directly to distribute your music. In contrast to music labels, they do not own rights or copyrights of your music. Your rights stay with you to 100 %. After all, we all know big labels often have other goals with your music. They may help you along to turn you into a big name.

But, and that’s huge but, they tend to take advantage of your talent for their own ends. That means that even if you have your very own style, it will somewhat disappear to make more money with your music. Moreover, you lose the rights to your music. Some of those digital distribution companies will take a commission, however, it’s only deducted from your revenue. Your music is then distributed to Apple Music, Spotify, Instagram, or even TikTok. If you’re a band, the revenue will go to each collaborator directly.

Parting Words On Digital Distribution Companies For Indie Artists

Allowing yourself to have creative freedom is the dream of every artist. Being your own boss is the ultimate goal of every musical venture. The best part about it is though, it saves you the headache of dealing with third parties. AND your music gets distributed all on its own – all without the help of a big label. That’s true independence, isn’t it?

Christophe Rude
Christophe Rude
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