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One of the most crucial and exciting periods for any musician’s career is the launch of new music, whether a single or an album. It’s not difficult to see why! The successful release of new material depends on extensive and sometimes complicated promotion and roll-out processes.
An online campaign is usually necessary to reach as many people as possible. However, as an upcoming artist, you may find it fairly difficult to fund a campaign that reaches the people you want it to. With this in mind, we will explore some channels you can leverage to fund your online launch campaigns. So let's go!
How to fund an online launch campaign
If money is an issue, then here are some practical ways to secure funds for your launch campaign:
Crowdfunding has become a popular option in recent years across the arts. Artists can successfully raise money for their creative projects using platforms such as Patreon, Kickstarter, or Indiegogo. With crowdfunding, fans can directly invest in your music whilst receiving exclusive content in return.
Running a successful crowdfunding campaign requires tact and creativity. Also you'll likely need to fully leverage your social media accounts to create the necessary PR for the crowdfunding campaign to reach as many people as possible.
It might be helpful to attach little incentives to the campaign. For instance, you can offer donors a personalized thank-you note, exclusive merch, or VIP access to shows depending on the amount donated.
Applying for Grants
If you don’t have record label backing and don't want to depend on your fans for funds, grants could be a great option to consider. There are numerous local and international grants that you can explore to fund the creation and launching of your music. Notably, these grants are typically selective and are, as such, not a guaranteed source of funding.
You can improve your chances of securing a grant by applying to multiple. It is also essential to take the application process very seriously. They may offer better advantages over regular record label deals if you secure a grant.
Generally, you can retain ownership of your masters and maintain creative freedom. However, some grants may have specific conditions so pay attention to the fine print.
Take a look at your local government and council sites for more information.
You can also consider short term loans to fund your online launch campaign.
The amount you can secure would likely depend on your creditworthiness (as reflected in your credit score). There are several loans you can explore, with varying requirements. If you have problems processing a bank loan, a platform like CreditNinja has quick personal loans, which can come in handy.
Unlike grants and donations, loans must eventually be paid back, usually with interest. However, an upside to taking a loan is that you own your copyright entirely and don't have to split your profit with a record label.
Running a Pre-Launch Sale
One way to build excitement for your future project among your fanbase while raising money for a robust online campaign is running a pre-launch sale. A pre-launch sale essentially refers to selling various items before the release of the associated project. The items can be anything, ranging from album-themed merch to tickets for a release show to autographed vinyl and CDs.
Naturally, the prices of the various pre-sale packages would vary based on the items they contain. You can improve the success of your pre-launch sale by organizing an online context, for instance, where people who make a purchase stand a chance of winning a prize. Ensure all pre-sale items are delivered to buyers by the single/album release date.
How to run a launch campaign on a low budget
Even after exploring various means to raise funds, you might still have to run your launch campaign with a limited budget. Here are some steps you can take to ensure a successful campaign:
Create promotional materials on your own. For instance, you can leverage various templates to create album covers on platforms like Canva. Similarly, you can create teaser videos for your project using apps like iMovie and Instagram.
Get more visibility and buzz around your project through blogs and articles. One way to do this is by researching local music journalists. You can email them to let them know about your project and ask if they would be interested in writing about it.
Expand your network. Start creating relationships with people who could be instrumental in promoting your projects, such as blog owners, journalists and You-tubers. Leverage your existing network as much as possible, by encouraging your friends with a large following to help create awareness for your project.
- Approach local venues and offer to perform. This can be an effective way to raise awareness about your upcoming project among the locals.
Launching a new project can, no doubt, be a daunting process, especially for independent artists. Nevertheless, you can manage a decent launch campaign with sufficient effort following the tips suggested above. Good luck!