Pick A Niche And Dominate It

Indie artists must break from a niche. That niche must be well delineated
and can be very very small and still be effective. The mistake most artists
make is making a pop record that does not have a niche to break out of.

The adage, think globally act locally can be re-stated think mainstream, act
niche. The newer your niche, the greater your chance of becoming identified
with it. Almost every Tommy Boy superstar broke out of a niche they
dominated if they did not invent. Examples: De La Soul: hip hop hippies,
House of Pain ­ Irish hip hop, Queen Latifah: first proud and powerful
African American woman in hip hop, Ru Paul, first drag queen with dance hit,
and so on.

So whatever you genre, sub-genre or micro niche there will usually be media
that dominates that view of reality. If you are a militant political artist,
you would launch in the niche militant political blogs and magazines to
establish a beach head. If you a rapper that rapped about uzis and AK¹s
maybe your entry would be blogs and mags about guns and ammo. David Hazan
mentioned a band that was way into Anime and they get written up in the
Anime blogs and make a living playing the Anime shows. Will they be able to
cross to mainstream? Maybe not but they can be the lords of their niche and
make a good living doing that.

So rather than being specific, I would point to blogs and mags in your
micro-niche that might not even be music-oriented. You may be more news to a
non-music site and reach a core audience that way than trying to get
Pitchfork to discover you. There are also opportunities to perform at
industry shows in non music industry events and get paid much better than
you would in the glutted music market.

In other words make your presentation and target audience as unique as
possible so you can be the king of that niche, then target the non-music
publications (both on line and off) and the events in that niche. You will
be building fans, gaining awareness and making money before you even attempt
to cross into the ³music industry.²

- Tom Silverman

(from The Indie Maximum Exposure 100 was created by a team of industry
experts and by artists that are making a full-time living from their music.
Visit our friends at HypeBot to obtain a PDF of the Indie Maximum Exposure