A lot of promo people we talk to say artists and managers often don’t know what professionals do to promote single releases. So we asked for help from some real professionals.
Then we made up an indie band with an established following and a few previous releases. We made up £5,000 ($7,650 USSD) to spend. Then we wrote this rough guide - enjoy!
14 weeks out from release
* Commission single artwork, even if it’s for download only. Designer £300
* Commission artist photos. Photographer £500
TIP: “Commission nice/weird/cool COLOUR band photos, the brighter the better” David Laurie SiC Records
Start social media engagement. Digital Promotions £500 - £1,000
NOTE: Social media work continues from here up to and after release date.
12 weeks out from release
* Engage PR £500 - £1,500
* Release advance copies/links to share to monthly press, for review, eg Q, Mojo, Clash, Uncut. Start with sending out a simple press release announcing the single and put the single into context, eg from an album or a stand-alone track? Will there be associated shows? PR
TIP: There are very few print outlets for singles, a couple of dozen really. It’s ALL about online for singles. David Laurie, SiC Records
NOTE: Press work continues from this point up to and after release date
TIP: “The press release needs to be straightforward and attention-grabbing “artist releases great new song/album” just isn’t enough. What’s your story? What’s special about you/the song/album and why?” Gillian, Million PR and Naked Press.
* Engage Agent 10% of gross
* Engage Radio & Video Plugger £500-£1,500
NOTE: “I would separate Radio & TV costs. Radio Promotions £1000-2000 and TV Plugger £500-1000 per release. They might be able to get it for less, but this is much more realistic of the going rates.” Prudence, Rocket PR
* Commission the official music video, the aim is to create a stand-out, remarkable video. Producer/director £2,000
TIP: “The video must be one that compels you to hit SHARE at the end, that is the idea. Not the new Bammers video but the video where the guy turns into a monkey and eats the aeroplane” David Laurie, SiC Records
TIP: “Commission the video now so it can be ready to service at least 6 weeks before release” Prudence, Rocket PR
TIP: “All video people take longer than they say to deliver, so I give at least 2 weeks ahead of my deadline as the actual deadline” David Laurie, SiC Records
* Create a lyric or packshot video, the point is have this video on the band’s YouTube channel when radio play begins ahead of release date, capturing early views and interest. Producer/director or Digital Promotions £0 - £200