Have questions about how Independent Music Promotions?
From 'What we require of our artists' to 'Details on our campaigns' to 'how we get better results than traditional PR companies', it’s all here in our FAQ for you.
1) What do you mean by guaranteed PR? Will you refund us if we don’t get results?
After seeing first hand the abysmal state of music PR, I.M.P decided from our very first client to offer guaranteed PR to every artist. What this means, pure and simple, is that every artist we work with will get quality press. Starter packages typically yield 6 + press pieces, a single month 12 +, and so on, with the Critical Mass delivering typically 60 + and a higher amount of major publications. In almost 4 years of being in business we have delivered this guaranteed PR to every artist we’ve worked with. Although it’s never happened, if there was ever a case where we under-delivered/did not hit our guarantee, we would either make it right by working until the goal is reached, or we would refund the money. Why did we go this route? We got very tired of hearing artists speak about situations where they paid a PR company thousands of their hard-earned dollars only to get no results. “It didn’t stick to the wall.” Well, that’s unacceptable and it happens far too often. It even happened to our CEO James Moore, and this contributed to the spark that started I.M.P. That’s why we formed partnerships and intensive research into supporters of the independent music market early on and focused on building strong relationships to ensure this never happens to our artists. Most artists want to have their art respected, and we feel a core part of that equation is generating CD reviews, features, and interviews, so we’ve made this the heart of our business.
2) What exactly is it that you do?
Once we receive your high quality music (320 kbps), your completed artists survey (which we email your way), your bio, 3-5 promo photos an album art, we put together a media pitch for you. From there, we reach out to our full media list, ranging from major publications to independent blogs, podcasts, and internet radio shows. We reach out personally with an introduction going over why we chose the artist and why we think they’re worthy of coverage, and it’s very time-consuming, so this is not to be confused with the many extremely ineffective “press release blasting” services out there. We also reach out to local press on your behalf with personalized pitches requesting coverage for shows or new releases. On top of this, we have contacts who will cover your music video, so we work with them to gain you more exposure. Most importantly though, we also work closely with our huge team of personal contacts, freelance writers, publications and contributors who we’ve partnered up with over the past three years and line up your album with dozens more writers who want to cover it. As opposed to sending you reports of where your music was sent, we send you actual results to your inbox and request that you share the press through your social networks to spread the love! Our communication with you continues for 4 + months typically (for our full campaigns), as the press, reviews, interview requests, features and blog posts keep on coming in. We’re always excited to send you results, and it’s the most gratifying when you’re excited, too.
3) What are the differences between your campaigns?
There is a huge difference, and this needs to be made clear. While we over-deliver on ALL our services, the major differences are these. Our introductory review package ($495) offers guaranteed music reviews from quality publications that trust our music picks. It’s perfect for any band and is meant as a basic resume builder, so it becomes easier to look good to festivals, labels, etc. As far as we’re aware, no one else is offering quality guaranteed services. It’s taken a lot of research and we’re proud to offer this revolutionary package. The review package is NOT meant to replace a proper album campaign. We offer a comprehensive album campaigns that are DYNAMIC and ONGOING for a full 3 months (you will continue to see results after the end of the campaign as well). It gets your music submitted personally to our full list of media outlets, both major and indie. It also includes everything the large review package does, but much more, allowing us to guarantee many more big ticket reviews by appealing to all of our major contacts and writers. Also, album campaign clients will receive our special physical media list, with many contacts we personally know (noted with “Say James Moore sent you”) that you can reach out to in your physical CD mailouts and be sure to generate results. We also work closely with you throughout the campaign and are constantly giving you updates via email with new reviews and media requests, as well as being available for consultations. We put intensive effort into making the most of the artist’s release, and it’s easy for us to generate anywhere from 35 – 100 press pieces, sometimes more, for a full campaign. We also provide assistance with both Facebook and Twitter to help you organically increase your fanbase during the campaign. On top of this, we also provide tour and local press support. For artists who want comprehensive promotion but can’t afford the 3 month campaign, we do offer single months (month-to-month plan at $895) and these typically yield at least 12+ reviews per month. For artists who are looking for a full-on media whitewash, we’ve recently introduced the “Critical Mass campaign”, which is also 3 months in duration, but the results are explosive, as we utilize all our media partnerships on your behalf, working with magazine and blog editors to create sponsored posts as well as teaming up with quality freelance writers in order to make sure you get the maximum amount of press. We also put more time and energy into your campaign early on to ensure that a blitz of press happens all at the same time and the music blogosphere is talking about you. The Critical Mass campaign is our most effective and recommended campaign, whether it’s an album, EP, or music video you’re promoting.
4) What can we expect to achieve?
High amounts of press in good publications. Period. This should help you make major strides with your band or project, gaining new fans and potential business opportunities, as well as a substantially more impressive press pack. As long as your release is timed properly and you’re playing live to support the release, have a quality music video, etc, you can reasonably expect some very positive growth. It’s hypothetical to wonder from the starting line “Will a tour manager or record label read about me?” though. We really can’t tell you that, but it’s certainly possible. Stay busy as the heavy press comes in, and there will be growth. You will get high amounts of press, guaranteed, and from there it’s up to how you leverage it and use it to your advantage. If we choose to work with you, it means we believe in you, and many people trust our choices. We’re confident enough to say that it will be the best investment you’ve ever made in your musical path.
5) Why is press important at all?
Most bands release their albums online and announce their updates via social networks….and nothing happens. The result is in many cases a great album wasted. So much effort put into the creative process, and none to show it to the world. Press is absolutely vital when it comes to grabbing the attention of festivals, labels, licensing companies and finding new listeners. It also raises the profile of your band exponentially, providing permanent results and platforms for you to be discovered. Artists with low amounts of press are often seen as amateurs or beginners in the industry, so that’s why our specialty is delivering high amounts of quality press. Focus on Facebook and Twitter all you want, but nothing can replace a quality piece in a respected publication. It’s critical to promote to the outside world, not just your mailing list.
6) I went with a PR company before and got no results. How do I know you’re not going to scam me?
This is one of the most common things we hear, and it’s unfortunate for a few reasons. The first is that, in an industry that is so easy to generate results in if you just do proper research and build steady relationships, it’s so unnecessary to get no results for deserving bands. We have isolated the reasons this happens first hand though. Many PR companies (it would be unfair to say most) work like this. They are open to all artists, meaning if you have the check, they’ll take it and tell you you’re on board. You send them your album and materials. They draft a press release and send it to “their list”. We’ve been added to some of these lists without so much as a simple hello, so it’s fair to assume that most of their emails are going to the junk folder. Artists spend thousands of dollars and end up with either nothing, or a few reviews. That’s obviously unacceptable on many levels. The other reason this scenario is unfortunate is that it creates a scar which the artist then carries with them to future endeavours. When the artist actually meets good people willing to help, they may not recognize it, be defensive, and miss the opportunity altogether. We’ve done enough groundwork, built enough strong relationships, and researched the music review market enough over the past 3 years to guarantee the best results. We’ve never had a situation where we haven’t delivered. Google is your friend. Before working with ANY company, be it PR, management, a record label, etc, make sure you Google them and their artists. The proof is online. If you search an artist roster and there are no reviews to be seen, stay far away because they’re one of the PR companies we described. We list our artist roster in the ‘About Us’ section and encourage you to put us to the test and Google them. We are also happy to provide a promissory before we go into business together, stating the minimum amount of reviews we guarantee delivery on.
7) I’m in X city. Do you have contacts there?
We have contacts in most major cities, and can reach out to publications anywhere across the globe.
8) Money is tight. Can I get a discount? Can I do split payments?
We price our review packages and campaigns making sure that they are among the lowest in the business, if not the lowest. We are already walking the line as far as work put in versus profit margin, so no, we cannot give discounts. We do offer split payments for all of our full, 3 month campaigns. These can be divided into 3 monthly payments.
9) How does an artist get accepted?
First of all, we pride ourselves on only choosing the highest quality, original bands. We are quite choosy with what we back. The reason we do it is because we want to a) be passionate about what we’re promoting, and b) build high amounts of trust with the publications we supply music to. We realize that when we submit music to popular music blogs we’re competing with hundreds of record labels, management companies, promoters, and friends of the writers. We’re confident we choose the best music, and hundreds of publications trust our picks. However, if you have passion, originality, edge, intelligence, strangeness, depth, or inspiration, we’ll not only be welcoming. We’ll be extremely fired up to work with you. Some artists we enjoy include: Janelle Monae, Refused, Radiohead, Chore, Massive Attack, PJ Harvey, Squarepusher, The Roots, DJ Krush, Jeff Buckley, The Weeknd, Tom Waits, Public Enemy, Pink Floyd, Opeth, Smashing Pumpkins, Sonic Youth, Beastie Boys, Fiona Apple, Mastodon, the Flaming Lips, Tool, David Bowie, Dead Can Dance, Azam Ali, Jack White, Nick Drake, Katatonia, Dead Prez, Nine Inch Nails, Faith no More, Porcupine Tree, Damian Marley, The Tea Party, Melissa Auf Der Maur, The Smalls, Fugazi, the Melvins, Kyuss, Tomahawk, Flying Lotus, Amon Tobin, Drive like Jehu, Leonard Cohen, the Dillinger Escape Plan, the Beatles, the Doors, Jefferson Airplane
10) What are the next steps?
If we like what each other are doing and want to proceed, we’ll just need a high quality album download from you (320 kbps), album art, 3-5 high quality press photos, and full bio/album info. We’ll send a survey for you to fill out that will help us with our media pitch. We also accept payment via Paypal, and will send an invoice via email. Once we start, you will see results within 1-2 weeks. In fact, you’ll most likely still be getting results 6 months after the campaign is over! What can we say? Some writers are overloaded and take their time, but that’s why we call this business ‘planting seeds’. It’s like Christmas when you check your inbox in the morning.
11) How many Facebook and Twitter likes can we expect to get?
At I.M.P we focus on something we’ve found most other PR’s (ironically) do not; delivering significant press to our artists. We do not engage in padding your account with fake likes like many “promotion services” do, and we believe that going into a publicity campaign with a focus on social media likes as the main metric is wrong. Anyone can get you Facebook likes, but the best person to do that is you, with hyper-targeted advertising, and this is something we can help you with. Promotion must be organic. We feel that companies who focus too much on peripheral services such as social media likes often are covering up for the fact that they do not deliver press results.