The above video is a prime example of one of the many high budget Coca-Cola TV commercials. If you’re a musician you probably won’t get the luxury of your own commercial, however what we can conclude is that Coca-Cola is going to a great deal of effort (and expense) to promote (or brand) themselves in a specific way. If the above commercial depicted someone suffering a heart attack after sipping Coke, you’re probably not going to see many people with a desire to buy the drink after watching the scene.
By promoting yourself in a specific way, you open yourself up to new opportunities. There are a number of tools as your disposal that brands like Coca-Cola use to brand themselves, that doesn’t involve spending millions on a commercial. As musicians, all we need to do is copy what the big brands are already doing well.
The average person knows that The Coca-Cola company most likely has a YouTube channel, Twitter account, Instagram profile as well as a number of other platforms to promote themselves as well as interact with their audience. As a musician, these are all great tools to depict yourself in a specific way and bring you new opportunities. You could start simply with opening up a YouTube channel and posting videos of your last show, or a particular performance that portrays you (or your band) in a great way. There are certain promoters that will ONLY hire based on video submissions, so a YouTube channel makes a great portfolio.
Merchandise can be equally powerful. As a young child, I remember taking Karate lessons. The instructor offered a deal to each student that if they could convince their parents to add a bumper sticker to their car, he would offer them 20% off his charge. This opened up a great promotion opportunity to bring him new clients. How many times have you seen someone driving around with an “I Love Coke” bumper sticker? They liked the brand (drink) so much that they’re willing to promote the company without even realizing it. As a musician you should strive to achieve the same.