Why Haven’t People Heard Of You?

branding music marketing Jul 13, 2022

I think it’s safe to say that we have all heard of McDonald’s and KFC, but…have we all heard of you? Probably not! So why has everyone heard of Maccas and KFC but not little old you?

It’s not because they are food and you’re not! There are tons of burger and chicken places that are freaking amazing, but we haven’t heard of them. The difference is the marketing of their very clear brand. 

I try not to talk to technical because when I first started out I didn’t know what the hell any of these words meant, and I didn’t really care either because I just wanted to release a damn song. But, it became very apparent over the years of my failure that I did need to care, so much so that I needed to dedicate time to learning all about music marketing. It’s funny because back then, I bloody hated anything to do with the biz side of music, but now, I am totally obsessed with marketing, not only music but business in general. And in turn, this has significantly helped my music career and my music school grow!

So back to McDonald’s and KFC. Let’s look at what we know about both of them. 

McDonald’s

  • Colours: Red and yellow.
  • They have the very recognisable M referred to as the “golden arches” so recognisable that even a bloody 2-year-old knows what it is! 
  • They all look the same.
  • They all pretty much taste the same unless you get staff on a shitty night. 
  • They have Ronald McDonald, a scary-ass-looking clown that everyone still seems to love. 

KFC

  • Colours: Red and white
  • 12 secret herbs and spices
  • Colonel Sanders, whose very image is so well known that I feel sorry for anyone who remotely looks like him!
  • The massive lit-up chicken bucket 
  • The big KFC logo

Both of these restaurants have brands that are so strong that, as I said, even a 2-year-old will start screaming for it when they see them. This is called very clever branding, and it’s something that you need to do for your music! 

Here are three things to consider when you are developing or even evolving your brand.

  1. Does your brand represent who you are? Or is it all mismatched? For example, I am a pretty rocky, edgy kinda singer, so if I dress up for a photoshoot in high heels and a pretty dress, it’s not gonna work for me because my look is totally mismatched to my brand. 

So when you are thinking about your brand, or in other words, the way you want to present it to the world, does your brand represent who you are as an artist? Does it suit the following:

  • Your look
  • Your genre
  • Your beliefs
  • Your personality 
  • Your attitude. 

How the hell do you make all that match? Well, that’s called a planning session! You need to take some time out and answer the following questions.

  • What kind of look am I going for? 
  • How can my dress style and personality match my music?
  • How can the artwork and logo I create match my music and style?
  • How can my personality match my music? For example, how do I show up on my social media? How do I engage with my audience or with the people interviewing me?

These are some of the first questions you need to know the answers to before you can release your music and gain fans because if you don’t know who you are, then how are you meant to find your target market. 

  1. What about you makes you different to other artists in your genre? Have a good think about this because whatever makes you different or unique, you need to pour fire on it! You gotta double down on what makes you unique because that will either draw people into you or repel people, and in both cases, that’s a damn good thing. There is this saying in business, “if you’re for everyone, then you’re for no one”, and that’s why I have chosen to focus on helping new artists get their first single out. Now can my information help artists who have already released music? Absolutely! But that’s not my target audience. 

I find that when my students are releasing music for the first time, they really struggle to work out who they are as an artist. They want to copy what other artists do, which makes sense, that’s how we learn, we copy. Actually, that’s how come most of the population doesn’t breathe properly. We were all born to breathe diaphragmatically and then we copy all of the adults in our lives and then we stop breathing properly and wonder why we struggle to sing! But back to my point of copying. It’s fine to learn that way but our aim as an artist is to be unique and that is something that we can’t achieve by copying, by definition being unique means not to copy! 

So you do you! I said that in last week's episode a lot! You do you! And if you feel like you’re not good enough, then firstly, join the club, but second, keep doing it until it feels right. You keep doing you! 

  1.   Aim to build a cult following: Ok why do we want a cult? Well, the word “cult” comes from the word “culture” we want to build a culture. When you build a culture, people want to come back, they want to see you, they want to spend time with you, they love you and they buy whatever you’ve got! 

Now how do you build a culture? You start with getting your brand right! You gotta know who you are and why you are doing what you’re doing. People are looking for a leader, someone who stands out and who is unapologetically themselves. A great example of this kind of artist is Michael Jackson, Adele and Billie Eilish, they won the world over by being themselves. 

If you don’t put the time in to do this work, it won’t work! Take it from me, I spent the majority of my music career trying to figure out who I was as an artist. I knew who I was as a singer, I worked my ass off to be a great singer, I could sing anything! But I said it in last week's episode “when you try and be for everyone, you’re for no one” so eventually I found my market and that’s when things changed for me. 

So I want you to do some homework… you can leave your answers in the comments. 

Answer these questions openly and honestly… 

  1. Does your current brand represent who you are?
  2. What is one thing about you that makes you stand out from the crowd? What is that one thing everyone always says about you? Find it and pour gasoline of that fire! 

You have what it takes, you just have to do the work. I say it all of the time but then I think.. People used to say that shit to me all the time too and I never listened… well that was until I had two little kids I had to feed. 

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