“Ask and you shall receive” is a notorious quote and a powerful affirmation that we’ve all heard. However, it’s surprising how little we actually put this good advice into action in our everyday lives. Being an independent singer/songwriter, I’m fortunate enough to have received a few endorsement deals from amazing companies, including Luna Guitars, Fishman, Reunion Blues, and most recently, Breedlove Stringed Instruments. Fellow indie artists have asked me how I’ve gotten these sponsorship deals and the simple answer is: I asked. Ok, so it takes a little bit more than just asking for a business to sponsor you, but how else is your dream company supposed to know that you’re interested unless you tell them? Here are some pointers that I hope will help you land your ideal deal! Do your research. Make sure you take the time to research the company you’re interested in. See if they represent similar artists, vibe with your brand, (and make sure you actually like using their gear!). Go to music conferences and events where they are sponsoring and get to know the people behind the products. Relationships take time so put yourself out there, shake some hands, and always follow up with the contacts you make! Figure out what you want, and what you can give in return. A sponsorship deal can mean many things. It can mean discounted/free gear, promotion, tour or studio funds, giveaways for your fans, etc. Decide what you want and spell it out so they know what you’re asking for. Also, a sponsorship is a two-way relationship. Always include what you can do for them as well. What do they get out of this deal? If you’re asking for promotion, propose that you can give them exposure to your fans in return. Be specific on what you can offer to add value to the relationship. Tell them how many followers you have on social media and your mailing list and how often you play shows. They’re also typically interested in your goals as an artist. The more you’ve got going on, the more they will want to invest in you! Think outside of the box. Don’t be afraid to think outside your music box and approach a non-music-related company about a sponsorship. For example, if you’re always wearing your favorite brand of jewelry or clothing at your shows, reach out to those companies. This doesn’t have to be a huge brand either. Start with your local stores in your community. Discuss opportunities on how you can grow your brands together and think of new ways to get your music out there with the help of your partnership. Perhaps they can drop a download card for your new single in each customer’s shopping bag, and in return you can give away a coupon to their store when someone buys one of your CDs at a show, or even do a live in-store performance at their store. Be creative! Now go ask, and get ready to receive!
Katie Garibaldi is an award-winning singer/songwriter and guitar player from the San Francisco Bay Area. Her seventh album, ‘Follow Your Heart’ will be released worldwide in July 2014. She is a newly endorsed Breedlove Guitars artist and has been named a Music Connection Magazine Top 100 Live Unsigned Artist. An avid national touring performer, Katie has amassed a devoted fan base, due in large part to her engaging live shows and a personal connection to her listeners through her music. Follow Katie on Facebook, and purchase a CD or buy concert tickets to upcoming shows here.
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