For many artists, signing a recording contract is the ultimate sign of success.
However, the simple truth is that getting a record deal contract can do more harm than good, especially if you’re not ready. Before trying to get signed, you’ll need to put in some serious work. Follow these tips to improve your chances of scoring your first record deal.
Create a Stellar Recording
The days of getting signed based on having a killer live show alone are long gone. Today’s record companies want to hear a recording before they present the paperwork. You might be able to get a recording contract based on a demo if you’re lucky (and extremely talented), but you’re more likely to have success if you have an album (or at least an E.P.) ready to go. That way the label can just do a little mixing and mastering and send it off to the presses.
Your recording is essentially your resume. Spend the time to create something you’re proud to show the world. Iron out every last detail before you hit the studio. Once you’re confident that your material is fully fleshed out, record at a professional studio. It might be tempting to send your home recordings out to every label under the sun to improve your odds of getting a recording contract, but you might actually hurt your chances of getting a record deal contract if your recording isn’t up to par.
Build a Loyal Fanbase
If a recording plays in the woods and there’s nobody to hear it, did the recording ever exist at all? Labels are businesses. They want a return on their investment. Even if your sound is undeniably game-changing, going from zero to hero overnight is extremely rare—even with major label support. In order to generate interest from labels, you have to show them that your audience will be willing and eager to pay for your album.
Become a Master Networker
Connections are everything in the music industry. Getting a recording contract is often simply about who you know. Go to concerts. Follow labels and industry professionals on your social media profiles, and interact with them. Meet people, then meet their friends. That said, industry pros have a sixth sense for recognizing when an artist is using them to gain something, so keep it natural and genuine. Be a fan. Build a brand. Provide valuable content. Be present, but don’t be a nuisance about it.
Take a Music Business Class
If you want to score a record deal contract, you need to be a professional. Labels want to work with people who know what they’re doing. Taking a music business class shows that you’re serious about your career and genuinely ready to sign a recording contract, and it also empowers you to make smart decisions as you navigate this potentially treacherous journey.
Here at 1500 Sound Academy, we offer both on-campus and live online classes. You can take individual classes, but we recommend taking the full course so you can move forward with pure confidence. Enroll today so you’re 100% ready to sign on the dotted line when the big moment comes.
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