I’ve lost count of the times I’ve been in talks with an artist about promoting their mixtape through Mixtape Madness via interviews, features and freestyle videos on the blog along with various advertising opportunities on the main site, but as soon as the conversation turns to money, communication turns kind of awkward and they lose interest. This doesn’t happen with every artist but it has happened with enough for me to sit down and write about it. This is frustrating.
I’ve been working in the UK music industry since early 2011, and whilst I do not claim to be an expert by any stretch, I have learnt so much about the role of money in this field in such a short stretch of time. Whilst unpredictability in the UK urban scene in general is an endemic, the one thing that remains consistent is the fact that some artists just won’t part with small change such as £20 for mixtape hosting that’ll last as long as the internet is in existence, yet they’ll readily splurge double that amount on their daily smoking hobby or a new Xbox game.
There may be a problem with investing in yourself when confidence isn’t too high, in that some artists don’t have the faith in themselves to make it big so they don’t want to part with cash they could be putting to the side. When it comes to studio time and production, promotion, advertising and marketing, money has to be spent. Favours are hard to come by in this industry, especially when, most of the time, something else will be expected in return if no monetary payment is made.
Of course, a banner on the homepage of a popular website isn’t going to get you thousands of extra fans just because the site gets X amount of hits per month. The work has to come from the artist’s side too, i.e. social networking, touring, collaborating with other artists, getting onto blogs/radio/TV and essentially putting yourself out there as much as possible, and we try to hammer this into everyone we work with. Unfortunately, though, if the artist doesn’t get the reaction they wanted and they don’t take responsibility for not putting themselves out there enough, it’s easy to blame the people you handed part of your wages over to.
As one part of the small team that make up Mixtape Madness, I can confirm that we do our absolute utmost to ensure that every artist we work with is given a first-class service from a simple mixtape upload to a full on marketing campaign. We go through all our prices meticulously in order to come to a reasonable and competitive fee which will not only go easy on the artist’s bank balance, but keep our company afloat. We are much fairer than a lot of similar sites in this country.
Naturally not every artist who ever tries to make it big is going to blow. That’s just the way the music industry works, and you have to be prepared to fail so it’s understandable when artists are unsure as to whether they want to part with money for this reason. I totally understand that sometimes money is hard to come by and I don’t expect everyone to have spare change to spend on promo but if you can’t afford to put together a quality mixtape and promote it to the masses, take your time to save and work on the craft. If you want it to happen, you will make it happen, and we are here to help on that journey.
We created an interactive infographic highlighting key points about the popularity of Wretch 32’s Wretchercise mixtape.
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