At Cyber PR, We Represent Cool Bands

Happy Fall Ya’ll!  It’s here, and I am excited to share a few of the immensely diverse and talented artists we represent.  I walked into a showcase 10 years ago at Folk Alliance and had my mind blown and it was because Lindsay Mac was standing in front of me playing her cello like it was a guitar and it was incredible….  So naturally I freaked out when she called me and asked if I could help her with her all new reincarnation. This is not the Lindsay Mac you used to know, you will see why.  But Lindsay is not the only artist who you should add to your newest playlist, Two other artists who you already know are in our line up: Antigone Rising who make female rock and roll real and Jubilee Riots (Formerly Enter The Haggis) both haunted a few of my mixes in the aughts.  And I’ll let you watch and listen to the others because we represent cool bands…

LINDSAY MAC

 LindsayMac

If You Like: Ellie Goulding, Little Boots, Katy Perry

 

Killer Quote: “This is NOT the Lindsay Mac you used to know” – Ariel Hyatt

 

stunning electro-pop of Animal Again is the latest opus of singer-songwriter Lindsay Mac. Mac is widely known as the classically trained musician who went rogue and wrote quirky folk that innovatively recast the cello as a pop compositional tool with refreshing tonal capabilities. The Cambridge, Massachusetts-based artist is award winning, critically acclaimed, a mainstay on the modern folk tour and festival circuit, and an indie darling among radio programmers. In addition, she’s amassed a fanbase highly attuned to her vibrant artistic continuum. Listen to the amazing new song Remember here: http://cyberpr.biz/clients/3304

 

SYRE & FRESKO

 

If You Like: Chairlift, Foster The People, Florence and the Machine

 

Killer Quote: “They’re one of Australia’s most talked about up and coming duo’s…”

- Tracee Hutchison, ABC Australia

 

2014 began with Syre & Fresko winning 1st place in the National ABC/TripleJ Run competition, allowing them to represent Australia at the Annual Spring Gala for Chinese New Year in Beijing, performing for over 600+ million viewers in over 70+ countries. And the momentum hasn’t stopped there.

 

HOT NEWS: Their Original ‘Ruth’ (to be released on EP, Oct 17) has just been placed as a finalist in the global Unsigned Only Song Competition in the top 2% from 8000 entries! http://cyberpr.biz/clients/3324

 

THE GLASS CHILD

 

If You Like: Daughter, Florence and the Machine, Paramore, Juliet Simms

Killer Quote: “…she tears down walls with her music, using starkly honest lyrics and intense vocal chops to draw her listeners in and turn them inside out”- Whatstheruckus.com

 

Only 18 years old Charlotte Erikson left everything she knew and moved to London to dedicate her life to her music and art. She began performing and writing music under the moniker The Glass Child and over time amassed 29,000 dedicated followers and fans on her socials, started her own record label Broken Glass Records, and released 5 EPs. Her single “I Will Lead You Home” reached #2 on the Swedish iTunes-chart and been played on major radio such as BBC6 (UK), Sveriges Radio (Sweden) and 3FM (Netherlands). She has let her fans in on her journey by publishing “Empty Roads and Broken Bottles; in search for The Great Perhaps” in April 2013. It tells the true and raw story about a girl who had a dream and went for it with all her heart. The book was beautifully received and sold out after 3 days of pre-order. http://cyberpr.biz/clients/3326

 

ANTIGONE RISING

If You Like: Indigo Girls, Little Big Town, Sheryl Crow

Killer Quote: “Antigone Rising is carrying on the feral spirit of The Runaways”- Joan Jett

 

Antigone Rising stormed into 2014 with a foot stompin’ new single, a successful crowdfunding campaign, 2 fabulous EPs, a fan-made video, and a founding band member on the cover of Time Magazine. When the New York based, alt-country female rockers do something, they do it big. They Catapulted into the national spotlight in 2005 with a groundbreaking major label debut that landed them in the top 20 of the Billboard Heatseekers chart for an entire year, the ladies love outdoing their past accomplishments. http://cyberpr.biz/clients/3322

They are Set to return with a new EP, Whisky & Wine Volume 2 – Out October 28, 2014

 

JUBILEE RIOTS (FORMERLY ENTER THE HAGGIS)

 

If You Like: Augustana, Kings of Leon, Rusted Root

Killer Quote: “The guys from Jubilee Riots, on top of being amazing musicians who just released a fantastic new album, have been our poster boys, when it comes to engaging their fan base in creative and dynamic ways. Very few bands understand better how to leverage modern technology to turn their music into a journey that fans want to be a part of.”
- David Dufresne, CEO, Bandzoogle

 

Northern Roots act Jubilee Riots is a band that is very much centered around telling stories that resonate with truth and authenticity, as is evidenced by their latest outing, Penny Black. Inspired by years of touring, meeting people and sharing stories over late night drinks at the bar with fans, the band put out the call for people around the world to submit their stories as inspiration for their upcoming album. 500+ pages of letters came from across the globe – from the band’s native Canada to locales as far away as Japan and Australia – each carrying the weight of one fan’s emotional tale.

The band created a collection of tracks that they could perform start to finish on a late night dance tent stage at festivals; an album with an energetic pulse that would be impossible to sit still and listen to. It was that juxtaposition of upbeat party grooves with meaningful lyrics based on very personal stories that became the focus of the project.

We can’t share the music just yet but come see the brand new website here: http://www.jubileeriots.com/home

 

TAPEBENDERS

If you like: The Replacements, The Dandy Warhols, The Smashing Pumpkins

Killer Quote: “One of the most impressive things to mention about this album is the amount of insightful, reflective lyrics utilized… They tap into a number of sounds musically, from sounds paralleling newer bands like Built To Spill and Neutral Milk Hotel to older groups like The Smashing Pumpkins and The Flaming Lips.” – Good Vibes Music Blog

 

The Milwaukee, Wisconsin-based 6 piece forges a distinct sound from a variety of sources, ranging from majestic progressive rock, psychedelic, bluesy riff-rock, concise pop, and shards of shoegaze and post-rock. Since the band embraces such a panoramic stylistic perspective, the group has garnered favorable comparisons to such diverse artists as The Replacements, The Dandy Warhols, The Stone Roses, Built to Spill, and The Flaming Lips.

Their newest video Semantics was directed by Coven director Mark Borchardt, (who himself is the the subject of the essential 1999 documentary American Movie). Borchardt took a break from working on Northwestern and Scare Me, his two feature projects, to add his low-budget gore skills and you can watch band members go crazy and murder each other.  Just in time for Halloween http://cyberpr.biz/clients/3301

If you run a blog, DJ a podcast , curate playlists on Spotify or review music and you want to write about any of these fabulous artists I would be thrilled and delighted to send you music, set up interviews and invite you out to come see them.  xAriel

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If You Stopped Sharing Your Voice Tomorrow What Would the World Be Missing?

Every day brings with it highs and lows. This summer I had my share of highs and lows that I’d like to share with you.

I helped three powerful women from across three generations illustrate the great amount of impact and influence they have to offer others and the world. These were my highs this summer.

My lows involved the anxiety I felt as I began to move away from my comfort zone and into a whole new realm – thought leadership. This terminology does not sit well with everyone, I know, and this realization is where many of my hesitancies stemmed from. However, what I’ve come to realize is you can assign whatever terminology you like, but the importance still stands. If you want to get ahead in any desired field for any reason you must have some influence. This is being a thought leader, an influencer, whatever you feel comfortable calling it.

I came to terms with a great deal this summer and as we move into Fall I am confidently moving in the direction I had been temporarily set back from. I’ve been getting a tremendous amount of wonderful feedback on my article, “If You Stopped Sharing Your Voice Tomorrow What Would the World Be Missing?”, and I would love for you to read it and share your thoughts as well.

 

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The Musician’s Guide to Creating an Effective Music Marketing Plan (Part 1 of 3)

 

Chris Hacker here, I lead the Marketing Plan team at Cyber PR® and really enjoy working with our artists who are in diverse genres and in all stages in their careers.

Over the years I’ve seen the same problems occur again and again. An artist will call us up looking for help promoting a new album that they’re planning on releasing in a few weeks or less! And often their only plan is just to hire a publicist. It completely baffles me that an artist will work so hard on an album, spending hours and hours writing songs and practicing these songs and then spending large sums of money recording, mixing and mastering, to only rush the release without being ready and having a complete plan in place. Chris Hacker Especially in today’s saturated climate where even small music blogs are getting inundated with hundreds of emails a day from artists looking for coverage, just making an album and then wanting to “get some press”, is not enough of a plan. An artist needs to be working many different angles and taking many different approaches to get seen and heard.

In this three part series I will discuss some basic components of a marketing plan to promote you and your new release. This begins with building a solid online presence, which will be the focus of part one in this series. Ariel contributes some of her articles and videos to back me up.

Time and energy needs to be spent building a strong online presence in order to be taken seriously as an artist for when the time comes to start actively promoting. This will begin many months before there is even a thought of releasing an album. Here I’ve laid out the critical elements for a solid online presence and other important steps that will prepare you for a new release launch.

ONLINE PRESENCE

The music industry is built on appearances. To be taken seriously it is very important to have a complete and professional looking online 360 degree presence. There are lots of places online that artists can have a presence, but I will focus on the four of the most important: Official Website, Twitter, Facebook and YouTube.

OFFICIAL WEBSITE

Your socials are not substitutions for your website. It’s important to have an online home where you are in complete control that is modern and functional. Your website should have a place where people can easily listen to and buy your music (but not a player that plays automatically when a person lands on your site, I can’t stress that enough), a news section where people can read the latest happenings with your career, and a newsletter sign up that offers an incentive for signing up such as free music or merch discounts.  It always surprises when I go to an artist website and can’t find any contact information or links to their socials. Ariel wrote a great guide to help you with the architecture so you don’t miss anything.

TWITTER

This platform is great as you can easily build a following of targeted users. Many clients come to us with stale Twitter accounts (their last Tweets from months ago), the profile is missing a cover image or bio and there are hardly any followers. What I also see is many don’t know the basics. Not understanding them will really hurt your promotional efforts as bloggers, and other music industry professionals you may be contacting will often visit your social media sites to see how serious you are and see what kind of existing following you have, and a stale profile will not help you chances. If this is the state your Twitter is in it’s time to jump start your followers by following people and many will follow you back. Every single person you interact with in real life should be searched for and followed on Twitter (friends, musicians, producers, club owners etc.) As there are only so many people that you can interact with in person, also target similar sounding artists online and follow their Twitter followers, as there is a great chance that these followers will also like the music that you are creating. There are many tools out there to help with this following effort, Tweepi is a great one for example. But don’t follow more than 50 accounts in a day to avoid being flagged by Twitter.

Next to tackle the image problem, or lack there of, upload a cover photo that says something about you and your music. A picture of the countryside may look beautiful, but instead use this prime real estate as an advertisement. A simple solution is to use a publicity shot with text on top of the image that promotes anything on the horizon like single, EP, or album releases, new music videos and tour announcements. To keep your profile active with Tweets use a program that will allow for pre-programming like Hootsuite and in as little as one hour could potentially schedule a weeks worth of tweets. Vary the topics you tweet about from career news (which should be no more than 20% of your output) to your interests, passions and hobbies. News, politics, sports, culture are all great topics to share for people to engage and connect around. There are many relationship building practices and benefits for being active on Twitter of course that we teach our clients, but by following these instructions you will at least have a respectable presence on this powerful platform. Watch Ariel’s Twitter Video Class it goes over the basics:

FACEBOOK

Yes there is definitely a pay-to-play reality on Facebook for a Fanpage to get maximum exposure. If you wish to spend money on advertising we suggest it but you should have goals in place before you do, and you should have a complete Fanpage that is active with daily posts if you want to appear professional. Make sure the page has a cover photo as discussed above for Twitter and install apps that work as promotional tools for you and your music. Three that I suggest you install are an artist profile (Ex. Bandpage), a store (Ex. Bandcamp) and a mailing list sign up form (Ex. MailChimp). For your posting efforts even though the posts won’t get seen by a large percentage of the people who have liked your page without advertising organic reach is still possible and an active Fanpage helps to show that you are an active artist. Posts that are not just text will have a greater chance of being seen, so share photos and links as much as possible and ask questions to increase engagement.

YOUTUBE

YouTube is the first place millions of people worldwide go when they’re looking for online video, and with music being the number one type of content being streamed, it is a very powerful platform where artists are getting seen and discovered. youtube icon For any artist looking to increase awareness and raise their profile, it is imperative to have a presence on YouTube with a professional looking channel, one that has a branded cover image and is linked to your other social media profiles so people can connect with you across platforms. Create a home page that looks amazing and is very functional by making categories to group your videos for easy viewing, such as “Behind The Scenes”, “Official Music Videos”, and “Live Performances”, and highlight an official music video in the featured spot at the top. The channel for The Flaming Lips is a great example of these practices put to use.

For the videos themselves I often see artists leaving off their artist name in the title of the video, which is terrible for search. Need to think of these videos as stand alone entities, not videos found on your YouTube Channel. Make sure you include keywords in your tags and place those most important keywords and keyword phrases at the start of your tags fields. Use adjectives that describe your music and similar artists as keywords with your artist name also being a keyword, the latter of which will ensure a greater chance your other videos will show up in the “related videos section” after one of your videos is viewed. I also often see description sections left blank too. This is a crucial piece of real estate to tell the viewer what they are watching and provide links to other content you own, such as your website and iTunes, where they can go for more music and learn more about the band (Make sure to use http:// or it won’t turn in to a hyperlink!). Here is a video from NYC blog The Wild Honey Pie, they pack all their descriptions full of information where the viewer can go to learn and watch more. Their YouTube Channel is branded well too, utilizing the same features as discussed.

Read our guest blog post (from an Ex YouTube Employee!) as well: 6 Ways to Make Sure You Don’t Waste Your Time on YouTube

NEWSLETTER

This is real simple, have one, and contact your mailing list once a month with news. Don’t cut corners on this either, a newsletter is where you’ll see the greatest impact on sales. All the tweets and Facebook posts about a new album out for sale won’t equal the results of a well crafted newsletter, so spend money on a mailing list service provider that can help you design a rich looking email and provide analytics and tracking capabilities so you can measure the effectiveness of your newsletters and make adjustments where need be. A premier solution that many of our clients enjoy working with is MailChimp.

Here are Ariel’s recent articles on Newsletters:

5 Critical Things to Keep In Mind for Your Newsletter

Cyber PR’s 3 G’s – GREETING, GUTS & GETTING – How To Write An Effective Newsletter

PRESS

I know this might seem too soon to talk about press but it’s not. This is not about pitching press, but identifying and becoming familiar with press outlets that you will eventually want to pitch your music to well in advance. Before reaching out to press it is a good idea to make a connection by simply following them on social media and then retweeting and favoriting tweets they are posting. For blogs that you want to make an even further connection with leave a comment on one of their blog posts (not about your music, a genuine comment about the blog post). Through this activity  this way when you do send the press outlet an email about your music, or if a publicist will be  doing it for you, there could now be some familiarity there and relationships potentially built  that will help the PR campaign in getting your emails opened and then your new album  hopefully featured. There are many ways to start building a media list of targeted media, one  method is to identify a musician that is on the same level as you, or slightly further along with  their career, and take note of the press outlets that they are getting featured in as then there is  a great chance that those publications would also feature you.

Here is some further reading that will help you prepare for PR. 

Now that you know how to build a solid online foundation and the beginnings of an online community dive in and do it.  Do not cut corners here. Having a true base will put you  in a much better position when you’re getting ready to release a new album, which is the topic  for part 2 of this 3-part series. In the next blog post I will discuss some basic principles for an effective album or EP launch.

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5 Critical Things to Keep In Mind for Your Newsletter

Newsletter
If you’ve read my last blog post, “How To Write the Engaging Newsletter You Should be Writing”, you’re probably in the process of drafting what will be one of the fundamental assets you will need to create a long-lasting career for yourself. Here are five things to keep in mind as you go through the process.

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Cyber PR’s Three G’s – GREETING, GUTS & GETTING – How To Write An Effective Newsletter

You have a a lot on your plate as an independent musician. You’re trying to keep up with Twitter, come up with content for your next blog post, book shows, write tracks, and the list goes on. Probably the last thing you want to hear is how underrated the newsletter is and how you should be writing one every month. I know.

But one more hour in the studio can make a song single, and one newsletter once a month can be key to generating revenue. Your newsletter is the one place that you can ask your fans for money on your own terms. Studies prove that you can’t be pushing your newsletter to the side.

To understand why the newsletter is so crucial and for tips on how to write one that is effective read my latest post on the Cyber PR blog, Cyber PR’s Three G’s- GREETING, GUTS & GETTING – How To Write An Effective Newsletter, at http://cyberpr.com/2014/08/newsletter/

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9 Ways to Increase Your Follower Base This Summer

‘Tis the season for concerts, summer jams, and amassing more fans! Summer is a time to relax, but it is also a time to continue working towards some of your aims. As a musician, I’m sure one of your aims is to continue building your fan base.

For 9 fail-safe ways to build your fan base this summer head to the Cyber PR blog and check out my article “9 Ways to Increase Your Follower Base This Summer”!

http://cyberpr.com/2014/07/9-ways-increase-fan-base-summer/

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