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Writing killer music promotions - by Jeffrey P. Fisher
If you want to be a success with your music industry career, you must master writing promotional material. From simple e-mail promotions to fan newsletters, from Web pages to full-blown advertisements, drafting persuasive and motivating promotional material is crucial. Here are some tips:
Focus only on your clients or prospects
Talk directly to the people who would buy your music products and services. Carefully and completely answer their questions and objections. Buyers are skeptical. They want to know what's in it for them. Always focus on the buyer and what she wants to achieve (not on what you sell). First, find out what people want, need and desire. Second, show these people how your music products and services give them what they want, need, and desire. Good promotional writing convinces people to buy because it clearly shows that what you sell is what they really want.

Turn every feature into a benefit
Provide clear benefits and the results of using your music products and services. too. People don't care about features. They are only interested in benefits and results: their benefits and their results, NOT yours! For example, a feature is something such as "We have low prices." That is not nearly as motivating as selling the low prices benefit: "You save money." Everybody likes to save money.

People usually want only two things: to gain something or to remove some pain. As you prepare your promotional material, frame your emotional and logical appeals using both tactics. For example, you can promote a gain such as: "Make money recording on-hold messages." Or you can promote how you remove pain such as: "Stop spending too much on library music, get our Melomania music library and SAVE!"

Create action and urgency
Promotional writing has only one purpose: to sell more of your music products and services right away. It's not about image building or being polite. It's about telling people how they can benefit from what you sell only when they act right away and buy it. I know this smacks of infomercial or sideshow hucksters, but these facts are true nonetheless. Write in the active voice and use action verbs. Push, prod, motivate, captivate, and ultimately, sell what you offer.

Create a compelling offer
It's essential to include an offer in your promotions. Offers include hard offers of the "buy this now" variety, or they can include soft offers such as "call for more information" or "visit our Web site". Include a mix of hard and soft offers with every promotion you send out.

Have a deadline with consequences
The best offers have deadlines such as "Hurry! This offer expires September 1, 2002". The deadline motivates people to take action fast. You might remind them of what happens when they don't act right away. They usually miss out on the deal: "Order by Midnight tonight and save $10. After that you pay full price for our CD."

Diminish the fear factor
Buyers are justifiably scared of making a bad choice. You need to carefully show them there are no risks when they buy from you. Offer a money back guarantee. Let them try before they buy such as a free MP3 before buying the whole CD. Also, provide secure credit card processing for your on-line orders.

Don't forget to ask them to take action
Explain what you want to happen next. "To get all these benefits, order your copy now!" As the salespeople of the world often say: ask for the order.

Promotional parts
Your best promotional weapon is a personal letter (e-mail or postal) written as a friend would write to another friend (your prospect or client). These letters should include the following parts:
* Headline. Don't waste time. Put your strongest benefit right at the top of the page or in the subject line of your e-mail.
* State the problem. After the headline, indicate that you understand the problems your clients or prospects face. These problems can be both the gain they want to acquire and/or the pain they want to do away with.
* Sell the solution -- you! Indicate the solution to the problems you've outlined. You might want to say: "We can help." That solution is, of course, the music products and services you sell.
* Pile on the benefits. Explain all the benefits of the solution you provide.
* At this point, you can discuss some of the product's or service's features (size, color, etc.)
* If necessary, take a moment to introduce the people behind what you are selling.
* Testimonials and endorsements from media and other satisfied clients, can reassure people that you deliver what you promise.
* Now, make your best offer and ask for the sale.
* Don't forget to include any necessary follow-up procedures such as how to order.
* Use a Post script or P. S. that restates your most compelling benefit and offer as one more sales push.

FAQ promotion
Another effective promotional tactic is a question and answer format. Again, lead with a headline, state the problems facing your clients and prospects, show how you can solve these problems (through what you sell), address every sales objection, and lastly, provide instructions on how the person can get what you offer. This format is versatile as it can be a letter, brochure, and even a Web page. Go to http://www.jeffreypfisher.com/melo.html for a real-world example of this approach.

Finally, don't neglect your need for writing promotional material that works to sell more of what you offer. These tips should help you get started in the right direction.

Jeffrey P. Fisher is the author of three best-selling music books: "Ruthless Self-Promotion in the Music Industry," "Profiting From Your Music and Sound Project Studio," and "How to Make Money Scoring Soundtracks and Jingles." He is currently working on a fourth title due out during 2002. Get more information on his "Moneymaking Music" Web site at www.jeffreypfisher.com


For even more profitable music industry advice, subscribe to Fisher's FREE Moneymaking Music Tip of the Week by sending an e-mail message to jpf@jeffreypfisher.com with "subscribe tip" in the subject or body.


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