So you have a very small pool of ACTUAL buyers. This is something a lot of artists feel self conscious about. Most independent bands would be embarassed to answer the question “How many CD’s have you sold?” This is normal and it’s nothing to feel bad about. It makes perfect sense, though, to maximize your exposure wherever you can, and one way to do this is to make your buyers distributors. In today’s music market, when someone buys your CD, it’s safe to say they are a hardcore fan. This is because, to be honest, paying for music is optional. For better or worse, it’s the current state of things.
Why not send out the CD with 2 or 3 bonus CD’s and a personalized thank you note? You could even throw in an autographed post card or 8 x 10 so your fan gets something else out of the deal. If you’re concerned about the extra shipping fees, it’s understandable, but this tactic could really be a big factor in spreading your music beyond your core fanbase. It’s people that you want in your circle – not $5 here and $7 there.
Of course everyone has the ability to distribute your music via torrents, blog posts, forums, and social media. It just happens more often and much faster when you are actively encouraging and rewarding these behaviours. This method will also work when someone orders clothing, merchandise or tickets for one of your live shows.