-Guest Post by Matt Bacon
Every band wants to know – how do I get better reviews and more press? Do I need to hire PR? And this is a great question!
You see – most bands need to be hiring PR – that is to say, someone whose job it is to get them press results around an album, be that reviews, interviews or playlist placements. The question that comes up a lot though is – why? The thing is, a good PR will guide you towards your target audience, get you hooked up in the right blogs and of course build your legitimacy. Let’s dig into why!
PR Guides You Towards Your Audience
This is huge. Odds are you aren’t connected too or aware of all of the relevant blogs in your niche. You only put out a record every couple years after all and it’s hard to keep track of all the blogs out there. If you are like most people in a band then you read the few big blogs in your genre and maybe 1-2 niche ones you think are cool.
Well, this is a big part of what PR can help you with – they help hook you up with some of the smaller tastemaker sites. Sites that the guys who run the bigger players frequently read. These are also the sites that the people into finding unsigned bands read. No one is reading the Rolling Stone to discover tiny underground bands right? Well, people who are reading niche blogs ARE looking for those underground bands, a good PR person can help connect you to them.
With PR You Are Paying For Connections
When told to hire PR a lot of bands will say ‘Well why do that when we can do it ourselves?’ I agree – PR is something you can do yourself. But again – where you might put out a record every other year, a PR person is involved in dozens of records a year. That means they have many longstanding connections you never would have had before.
This means that you are much more likely to get into that bigger publication you were targeting because the PR person probably has a relationship with them, one that you don’t have. After all – what are you more likely to check out, a recommendation from a trusted friend or a cold call from a band who asked you to like their page. The friend right? I thought so. Well, when you hire PR you are hiring someone who has those relationships!
PR Builds Legitimacy
This is the final big key. Hiring PR shows that someone who is serious in the industry was willing to invest time in helping you. I mean yes you paid them but when it comes down to it PR people need to only take on good bands because they rely on journalists trusting them to send them to good bands. They can’t take on whatever crap.
On top of that – having that positive review in a big publication is a great thing to be able to add to your press kit. It helps prove that you are legit to promoters, labels, and anyone else in the biz you might be trying to connect too. It’s just another one of those things that proves your band is worth listening too and working with. There’s no way around it.
Your band needs PR. You need people talking about you and buzz being generated. If you don’t get this going for your band then people won’t’ care about you. Sure there are exceptions to every rule but when it comes down to it, if your band isn’t getting written about for your new album cycle or tour or whatever, it becomes a lot harder to make people care. If people don’t care then they won’t buy your record or listen to your music – and that’s always the goal, right?