How To Find Clients Online

How To Find Clients Online

Finding clients, i.e., bands or artists, for your studio or as a freelancer is today not only limited to having the right connections or having a lot of friends who play in bands. Because we live in the age of the internet, we have access to so many more artists and bands that can be potential clients.

This can be especially useful if you are living in a small town with a limited amount of clients.

Some might say that if you want to increase your client base that you should go to venues, make friends with labels, etc. Even though they are good and useful tips some people don’t have access to labels and good venues. Even if you do, you can still take advantage of the internet.

There are many ways of getting clients online but in this article I will show you where to find bands, how to contact them and how to write the most effective email. The power of reminders. Focusing on developing relationships. The importance of exploring your client's dreams and goals. And much more.

Where Can You Find Bands To Contact?

Unfortunately, neither Spotify or Apple Music provide any contact information to the artists we listen to. Even though it would be awesome to be able to contact any band you like, that’s not the case.

However, there are so many other websites with tons of music that allows you to contact artists and bands. For example, Bandcamp or Soundcloud.

I personally like to use Bandcamp because they have a huge amount of bands and it allows you to browse by genre and time of release. This is helpful because it allows you to contact bands that released music last year rather than recently. Therefore are more likely to need your service sooner than later.

How To Contact Bands Online

There are many ways to contact bands and artists online. What I have found worked best is by sending an email. You can easily find a bands email by either going to their Facebook page or if you are using Bandcamp you can sometimes be lucky if they have it connected there too.

I have experimented with a few emails and what I have found worked best is to structure my email like this:

  • In the opening paragraph, make it all about the artist you are contacting. Reference some of their music and why you think it’s awesome. You have to listen to their music to do this. Not a full album but some songs at least.
  • In the next paragraph, let them know what you do (e.i., positioning). For example, if you are a recording, mixing or mastering engineer. Let them know who you worked with or projects you have done that you are proud of.
  • In the third paragraph, I usually focus on building a relationship rather than going for a hard sell. For example, I say, “I’m a mixing engineer and I would love to work with you. Are you working on any new awesome music at the moment?” I say this rather than telling them my rates because it allows you to start a conversation instead (more on why this is important later). Like you would when talking to an artist after a gig or in a meeting.
  • This is optional because some people ask for it but at the end of the email, I include a link to my portfolio. This can be on your website or on a Soundcloud page. It doesn’t matter where, as long as they can hear your work. Including your portfolio in the email saves time because I have had people asking for a portfolio and then it takes a few extra unnecessary emails to sort that out.

This type of marketing is typically referred to as “cold-marketing”. You are reaching out to people who have never heard you or visited your website. But what you are doing with this email, by focusing on building relationships, is that you are turning these “cold leads” to “warm leads”. This can also be done by, for example, retargeting people who have visited your website using the Facebook Pixel.

Staying On Top Of Mind

When you are starting to talk to a few interested bands you don’t want them to forget about you come time to record or mix. Since you are more likely to start talking to bands when they are in between records or are just writing new material, send them valuable content or ask how they are getting along.

This allows you to stay on top of your clients mind so when it’s time to record, mix or master, you will be the first one they think about.

Positioning

To stand out from your competition and look more credible when contacting new clients is through positioning. I do this by listing producers/engineers and bands I have worked for. And having a good sounding portfolio.

There are many ways you can stand out and position yourself. For example, with testimonials, credits, awards, content or anything that makes you stand out from the rest. If you have a website I would also use positioning there.

The Power Of A Reminder

If you have done all the hard work of reaching out to as many bands as you can, you don’t want to miss out on any potential opportunity by not following up. Maybe they saw your first email or message but forgot to reply. By just making yourself noticed again they will most likely come back to you.

This has happened to me many times. Whether that’s for booking guests on the podcast or potential clients.

It’s easy to do so don’t miss out on work by not following up!

What About SoundBetter?

You have probably heard about SoundBetter and might wonder, “Isn’t it easier to just join SoundBetter than doing all the hard work myself?”

SoundBetter, Fiverr or UpWork can be a very good option. In a previous article, I asked people online if they have had any luck by being a member on sites like these. The response was mixed but some people are making a living getting work from these sites.

However, on SoundBetter you have to pay a monthly fee to become a “Pro Member” to get any work coming through. So as long as you get that back from the amount of work you get, why not?

Also, depending on who you are as a person, these freelance sites can be a perfect fit for you. Or not. If you like to be in control of your own ship, run your own business, setting up your own systems, then running your own website is, in my opinion, better. And more fun!

Yes, you have to do more work to get attention at first but you also get the reward of having built it yourself.

The Importance Of Exploring Your Clients Dreams

As a side-tip, before talking about price and budget with your client, explore their dreams and goals with their project. This can reveal very important information about how they want their record to be made or where they want to take it.

This can allow you to send better proposals, add more value and charge more for your service. For example, if it’s really important for an artist to use specific gear, get on a Spotify playlist or play live shows, you can take this into account and help them achieve those goals, too.

These can then be added to your proposal as a different option besides the recording and mixing. A perfect way to offer more value to your client and for you to charge more.

Conclusion

Applying this “technique” of finding clients online is something that takes time and patience. Just like when you are building your client base “offline”, you have to allow time to let it grow. It’s not intended to be a hack where you can spam 100’s of bands a day. You have to take the time to find bands you like, listen to their music and build some sort of a relationship with them. Take your time and I’m sure you will see results

Byline

Niclas Jeppsson

Niclas Jeppsson is a freelance sound engineer based in London. Check out his website, youraudiosolutions.com and download your free guide, 3 Tested Ways To Increase Your Client Base.

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