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No matter what your involvement is in music, marketing needs to be a way of life. This is true more for the musician seeking to make a living in music but it generally applies to anyone with goals other than pure aesthetics.
What is marketing? Marketing is the entire range of activities that involve increasing your exposure in the market that you have chosen. This exposure then needs to lead to sales. These sales might be for CDs, DVDs, digital products, books, concerts, merchandise etc. It includes but is not limited to advertising, promotion, public relations, sales, endorsements, articles, interviews, establishing contacts etc.
A typical musician runs hot and cold in this regard. He or she gets enthused about marketing and works very hard... for a couple of weeks. Then, nothing for months.
What you need to do is to set aside time every day for something... anything... that would promote you, your work and your products. It's a good idea to follow some simple advice from the exercise world and the diet world. Do what you can maintain. In other words, it's a lifestyle more than an emergency event.
Many find a marketing calendar helpful. This is simply a pre-planned scheduling tactic for getting things done in a timely fashionsend out this announcement on this date, meet with so and so on this date etc. Continue to add things to your calendar that will drive your career forward and create sustainable activity,
It's always important to remember that music remains a business. It may be art but it is a business if you want it to be your living. If you compare how musicians run their business compared to how other people run non music business, you'll be shocked at the differences. They say that a good salesman makes 500 sales calls per day. A super salesman makes 1,000 sales calls a day. When was the last time you made 500 or 250 or 125 calls in a day? Sobering thoughts for those who expect the phone to ring. Contrary to popular dreams, the phone doesn't ring because you're good at your instrument or an excellent vocalist. It rings because people know who you are, how to reach you and because you've created an appeal. Yes, in the long run, appeal is even more important than how fast you play, how much you know or how well you sing.
The more you do, the more you will develop an attitude, a momentum. Soon, the process will be natural. It becomes something that you don't even have to think about, to do.
When this happens and continues to happen, you're on your way!