Starting a band and maintaining traction once you’ve hit the ground running can be incredibly time consuming and overwhelming. Aside from writing music, musicians must dedicate a considerable amount of time to the business side of things. This can include marketing, graphic design, digital content (i.e. music videos), and much more. Though many of these can be done by the band members themselves, some may lack expertise and require a professional’s help in different areas.
Take a step back and outline your band’s goals, experience, and resources. This is a great way to tell if you as a group possess the skills necessary to do almost everything yourselves, as completing every single task you wish is nearly impossible without outside assistance. For example, recording songs and compiling an EP can be done by musicians themselves, but having thousands of CDs or vinyl records printed will almost always require a company’s help.
Photography and visual content in general can be done at an amateur level, but highly professional work is typically what gets bands the most exposure. Unless a certain member of the band is skilled in this area, professional photographers and videographers can be extremely useful in this aspect. High quality photos and videos are perceived on a much more positive note by fans and experts within the industry. It also shows that you as musicians are dedicated to your craft and are willing to put the time and resources into becoming successful.
Promotion is often one of the more difficult components of musicianship that many often take for granted. Sharing a download link through your band’s social media profiles will hardly make an impact, nor will mailing a radio station copies of your albums without the professional connections to back it up. Working closely with a PR team is a great way to promote your work, though it can be a bit pricey. However, this is usually money well spent. PR firms have the connections, contacts, and credibility needed to tap into well known radio stations, magazines, websites, and more.
It all comes down to what you as a band want to achieve. Outsourcing work and operating alongside professionals skilled in other relevant areas can be expensive, and may not be the best route for bands that have just begun. However, it is absolutely something that must be considered if you hope to one day reach a certain level of fame. Remember, almost every single band that has found success in the past started from nothing. Should you have no money at all to throw at outsourced work, do not fret. Continued effort, dedication, and passion are keys to your success.