See Things Differently
Word of Mouth has always been the most powerful form of marketing, and now a new report highlights the importance of Social Networks in guiding people to make decisions.
I was always an avid reader of music magazines. I used to buy NME and Melody Maker every week, then at various points it was either Q, Sounds, Select, Vox or Smash Hits. I read every word and I ended up buying many albums based upon a 5 star review. And sometimes, the reviewer got it bang on and I loved the album. But other times, it would completely suck and I’d wonder what planet the reviewer came from to recommend such shite
So little surprise that people are turning away from critics and instead turning towards social networks, profile dedications and blogs. Sites like Hype Machine and Elbo.ws make this easier by gathering all blog mentions in one place.
But I don’t think reviews are necessarily dead. Reviews, after all, are simply filters which I think are a fundamental part of music marketing and distribution. I trust journalist’s judgement, simply I won’t believe one alone. So, I think review aggregators have a place too, sites like Critical Metrics and Cloudspeakers. By gathering all the reviews in to one place you get a very accurate sense of which bands are creating buzz or worth checking out.
What can bands do? Well, unless you have a press team, it’s extremely difficult to compete. Best advice it to search for music bloggers first who are in to your style and post them info and a link to an MP3. Journalists are paying far more attention to what everyone else is checking out and if they see your name mentioned are more likely to seek you out.