How to Make State-of-the-Art Video Singles Cheaply
By Kenny Love
When it comes to promoting their new music releases, I have found that most musicians only consider radio as the vehicle for exposing their music to the public.
Rarely do they consider publicity, in the form of print media, i.e., music magazines, weekly arts and entertainment publications and newspapers as support tools to help support their radio airplay.
But, even rarer, is their consideration of the importance of having videos for their singles. A video of your single, which was once considered an optional luxury, is now a standard, vital and necessary tool if you are going to compete with fellow independent recording artists for media and consumer attention.
And, a video is even more important if you are going to compete with major label artists. In fact, since having a video for your single, particularly, your very first single from a new release, is so vitally important, why would you even release a recording without one in today’s music climate?
To me, that is like a soldier going to war with only a handgun while leaving his automatic weapon behind in his barracks.
But, perhaps, in your mind, you believe that it is still very expensive to produce videos for your singles. Even more, while you are likely an expert on producing music, you probably feel like an amateur when it comes to video production. However, that need not be the case any longer.
So, I am going to show you a no-brainer approach to easily getting a video produced for, at least, your first single from your new release, if not all of your singles.
Steps to Getting Your Video Singles Produced Cheaply
1. After you have your mastered soundtrack, and have selected your first single, you should then contact an area college, university or art institute.
2. Tell the school’s administration department that you need to get in touch with its “broadcast journalism” department.
3. When you reach the broadcast journalism department, ask to speak to an “advisor” or “department head.”
4. Tell the advisor or department head that you are an artist interested in getting a music video produced, and that you would like to be put in touch with either a senior student or graduate student who is majoring in broadcast journalism with, perhaps, a concentration on “production” or “direction.”
You may also want to stress your preference for a student who has experience with having produced music videos already. Depending on the size of the school, there will likely be several highly qualified student candidates.
In most cases, you will find video producers or directors who will want to work from a script, which includes a story line, for your video single.
5. As for the low cost of getting broadcast journalism students to produce your video, in quite a few cases, these particular students are already in need of videos for their class projects, and yours just may be the one that will pique their interest. This is a no-cost method, and you will often need to arrange this setup one semester in advance.
In other cases, students may either own their film equipment, or be able to borrow school equipment for production. And, in this case, there may be nominal charges, however, these charges will be very affordable.
The best thing about this particular scenario is that, while you will get the best production knowledge from the student, as well as your video produced with the latest technology, you cannot be charged commercial rates, such as if you used a videographer or related service that officially operated in a commercial status.
But, perhaps, the best thing about this avenue to take for producing your video singles is that, not only will you be able to bring your marketing and artist status up a notch by having a video, you will now also have another product that can be used two-fold:
1. For further promotion of your single
2. Able to sell another product on online music sales sites as well as in retail outlets.
In some cases, you may also wish to offer it as a package deal with your CD. Additionally, why not go a step farther by incorporating it within your CD, placing it on DVD, as well as making it available on video cassette for retailers and consumer?
Note: Depending on the extensiveness of your production, most videos can be produced and edited within two weeks, if not sooner.
Kenny Love is president of MuBiz.com, a radio promotion and media publicity firm that also provides business and career services to musicians.