OK, so you’ve spent loads of money and time making a record; you’ve put it out; you sold a couple of hundred of copies to friends and relatives whose interest in your musical activities seems to dwindle with each release…and now you’ve got an idea for a bigger, better, brighter album that will knock the socks off the last one.
Time to consign the previous release to the dustbin of rock history, so you can focus on your new material, right?
And here’s why: when you made that old album, you produced something very valuable in this day and age: content.
Have you heard that old / new saying ‘content is king’? Well, content IS king. It’s what generates visits to websites, streams on Spotify; sync-deals for films; background music for Phil and Kirsty to visit houses to on Channel 4.
Good content takes time to produce, and even if you are bored with your old songs, and they’ve been knocking around for more years than you care to remember…they can come in very handy.
Just because a previous album didn’t sell millions, it doesn’t mean it’s not any good, and it could contain tracks which if produced, packaged or promoted differently (or individually) could well advance your career or generate cash to fund the next album.
So, here are some ways you can make the most of your older material:
- Think about approaching publishers and other artists’ managers with a view to getting your tracks covered. You might be sitting on a track which might never be a hit for you but could sell millions for a boy band.
- You can approach TV producers, film-makers or advertising people with your music.
- You could think about approaching games companies with an old track and ask them to have your tasteful and tender folk song form the background music to a violent shoot-em-up.
- You can give away your old material in exchange for email addresses or Facebook likes. This can be a really good way to build up a bigger mailing list.
- Create deluxe editions of your older albums. If you have a devoted-enough fanbase, you might find that they’re willing to shell out for a remixed and remastered version of a previous opus.
- Sell your older albums at gigs. It’s amazing how many bands forget to do this – they often rock up at venues armed only with their brand new release (when several punters may well want to buy other CDs - particularly if they are signed).
- You can also use physical copies of previous albums as incentives to attend gigs – if you’re sitting on a pile of CDs that never sold, why not give one away with each ticket sold for a show?
- You could also do a ‘two for one’ deal where people can buy the new album plus an older one.
- Rework a song for your new album. You might have a killer track on an older release - but one which suffered from a terrible production. Give it another go and release it as your next single. Who knows; it might be a hit second time round.
When you stop to think about it, there is actually quite a lot you can do with your older material.
Dust down those old CDs and get the boy band directory out.
Get these articles in your inbox
If you enjoyed this article, make sure you sign up to email updates - we'll send you all our latest blog posts and music promo tips.