One of the things I dislike about being an independent musician is the constant need for self-promotion. As an artist, a creative being, I just want to create, make my music, write my books, but that’s not enough in today’s fast-paced world. The internet has become a great tool for independent creative types, but it also makes for a larger sea of people, vying for attention, “Look at my work! Listen to my songs!”
My career has had many ebbs and flows, and will undoubtedly continue that way, such is the life of a writer/musician/artist/actor. It’s an unfortunate necessity that one has to continually blow one’s foghorn. It does work; a great portion of my clients find me online without me advertising, either through social networking on Twitter, for example, or just by search engine (which is why SEO is important). The creative personality is not geared towards marketing, promotion, SEO, blah blah blah, but until we are earning enough or have a high enough public profile, we have to just grit our teeth and do it.
I have to admit, my fragile ego worries people think I’m conceited, always talking about myself and linking to my wares. To me, it seems so repetitive to always be shouting about myself, like a market trader flogging knock-off gear, but I have to acquiesce it’s essential. I always think the product (and I hate using that word for art) speaks for itself, or should do. On the other side of the transaction, I listen to word of mouth recommendations more than I would ever pay attention to a glossy marketing drive, but ho hum, such is life. I don’t like being told what I should like, should listen to, should buy, but I think I’m in the minority, else a whole industry wouldn’t thrive in advertising.
I have to separate the creator part of myself from the business part. I have no interest in marketing, but I’m going to have to resign myself to plugging away until I’m in the position of ‘hiring that shit out’, as a colourful LA-based rock musician I know would say.
Oh by the way, did you buy my book yet?