Putting together a last minute press kit before A3C'17? We feel you!
Being an indie artist in today’s climate isn’t an easy task. There are just so many things to do aside from creating the music; from hiring designers, to paying your publicist, to buying merch to sell at shows (and so much more), it can get very overwhelming and expensive too. But the cool thing is, with a little research you can find some amazing tools out there to help make your life easier. Some of these are so awesome that I just had to share them with you, as I’ve been using them for a while now.
From designing beautiful graphics without having to hire a graphic designer, to selling merch without having to buy it first, here’s our absolute favorite resources for artists.
Canva - Some of us don’t have amazing graphic design skills and we also don’t have the money to pay someone to design every little thing that we need. If you’re one of those people and you haven’t heard of Canva, your life is about to change (no really lol). Canva is a FREE online design tool that has templates for almost anything you can think of. From Facebook covers to event flyers to social media announcements and other content, Canva gives you the ability to design all of these things on your own. It has a simple drag and drop interface and a whole bunch of pre-made templates for you to customize and make your own. Should Canva take place of your graphic designer? Probably not. However it’s such an amazing tool for creating quick yet beautiful designs on the fly. (PS: I prefer to use canva on my laptop because there’s more options, but Canva also has an iphone app too)
Shopify + Printful - Selling merch is one of the best ways for artists to make money to invest back into their career. The problem is that many artists don’t have thousands of dollars to invest into buying inventory to sell, and that’s a problem that’s now easily solved with Shopify and Printful.
Mailchimp - You may have heard of Mailchimp before, you may even have a mailchimp account, but if you aren’t using it I highly suggest that you do! Mailchimp is where you can collect email subscribers that you can then communicate with and promote to on a consistent basis. As an artist, your email database is pure gold! You should definitely be collecting emails from fans, followers and from those that buy your merch. That way you can send them updates when you drop new music, new merch and you can even invite them to your next show.
Thunderclap - Thunderclap is used by many mainstream brands but it can be extremely useful for promoting your new music and more. Thunderclap is the first-ever crowdspeaking platform that helps people be heard by saying something together. It allows a single message to be mass-shared, flash mob-style, so it rises above the noise of your social networks. In a nutshell, you can get all of your supporters to share your content with the click of a button. Imagine if all of your fans tweeted your album at the same time on release day? That’s all possible with Thunderclap. Try it out, it’s free.
Submithub - If you’re looking to get your music posted to a bunch of blogs and playlists but don’t necessarily have the budget to hire a publicist, Submithub makes it easy to get coverage and feedback on your music. It’s free to sign up and free to submit your music to outlets, but if you want to give your submission a boost and get guaranteed feedback, you can buy credits (which are only $1 each) which will put your submission at the top of the list and will guarantee feedback from the blog if they deny your submission. Submithub is a fairly new platform but it’s now being used by some of the top publications in music. Check it out and be sure to submit your music to Taste Creators.
Have any great tools to share? Tweet us @A3C!
Learn more about becoming a DIY at the Artist Essential Guide to Hip-hop panel.