[Note from Mike: Have you gotten any DJs to remix your song lately? Me neither. Marcus Taylor of TheMusiciansGuide.co.uk smacks us with some key reasons why we should, and some tips on how to do it. Pretty interesting stuff. (His site is actually full of such wisdom, as well as band resources — worth checking out.) Take it away, Marcus.]
Why would you want your song remixed?
While it’s often considered best marketing practice to zone in as much as possible on marketing to your target audience (ie. Promote your music to people who are most likely to become a fan) in reality this theory shoots itself in the foot. I, and many of my peers on this planet are not fans of a single genre, but a range of genres in various environments. Remixes are great for promoting your music for one reason – they help you to reach another artist’s audience. Similarly to collaborating, or producing a cover song, remixes allow you to gain full attention of the DJ’s audience – which is often not solely made up of fans of that DJ’s genre.
For example, take a DJ that regularly remixes music from non-electronic genres such as DJ Tiesto, his remixes of Imogen Heap, Tegan and Sara, The Killers, and Chris Burns helped those artists create enourmous hype around their releases. In fact, I bought Tegan and Sara’s album after listening to the Tiesto remix – and they’re an acoustic act. Remixes help you to reach new and diverse audiences with your music that you might have otherwise missed.
How do you get your song remixed?
So how can you go about getting a remix? Here are five tips to encourage DJ’s to remix your music that I learnt from a) being a DJ looking for music to remix and b) trying to hire DJ’s to remix releases by artist’s that I used to manage.
1. Offer a remix pack to make your song easy and accessible to remix
When a DJ wants to remix a song they need the individual files that make up the orginal version in separate tracks, sometimes you can get away with just an instrumental version of the song but that approach is very limiting. Put an easily downloadable ‘DJ remix pack’ on your website that contains all of the separate files in wav format along with a document that outlines the key, tempo, and any other details relevant to the remixer. By making the DJ’s life easier you will massively increase the likelihood of getting a remix.
2. Let DJ’s know you’re looking for a remix
What good is having a DJ remix pack if DJ’s can’t find you? Promote your remix pack in DJ forums, and link back to your remix pack page on your website.
3. Set up a remix competition
One way to encourage multiple remixes of a single and cause hype around several genres is to host a remix competition, whereby you offer a DJ remix pack as mentioned in point 1 to DJ’s and they each submit their own remix for judging. You can then select a winner and runner up and offer some kind of prize, but the real value is that you now have a heap of remixes of your song, which the majority of those DJ’s are likely to then promote to their audiences.
4. Incentivise remixes
One trick that I learned as a DJ producer / remixer (and got conned by many a time) is that if a remix is incentivized with royalties then the DJ is far more likely to remix your song, and at a decent quality. Most record labels I worked with would say ‘you can have x% of performance royalties for your remix’, which immediately seemed like a good deal in my mind, but realistically none of the remixes produced any significant royalties that would render it worthwhile financially.
5. Friend and Socialise with DJ’s
If you want to get repeat mixes by certain DJ’s you’re probably going to need to build a friendly relationship with them or offer them a remix fee for each mix. I prefer the option of building a friend, and my advise is to simply hang out where the DJ’s hang out – online it’s in DJ and electronic music forums, offline it’s in nightclubs. Get there and socialize!
This is a guest blog post by Marcus Taylor, founder of TheMusiciansGuide.co.uk, a music promotion website that offers resources and information to help musicians build their fan base and succeed in the music industry.
Image Credit: Caesarsebastian