Music Business: Physical and In-Person Sponsor Promotion Techniques

By Loren Weisman

Promoting your sponsor is a very important part of the music business. There’s nothing better in showcasing or promoting a product than watching it or trying it out for yourself, from test-driving a car to having a certain guitar in your hands to feel exactly how it plays for you.

At the same time, seeing something in person and watching how others experience it can help, too. Experiencing a product for yourself, seeing someone in person with it, or just seeing the brand or the information somewhere else and not just online can help promote and is something you want to do for your endorsers and endorsements.

Using stickers and signage for marketing

Your signage is wonderful when it comes to your brand; the same goes for the brand you use and especially the brands that endorse you. From adding simple stickers to drum and guitar cases, and even your vehicles, you help further the visibility of a brand.

With companies like Carsticker.com, Vistaprint, and other decal companies, you can easily highlight endorsers on your vehicle as it spends the bulk of its days out on the road carrying you from gig to gig. Artists who spend a lot of time on the road are more likely to get endorsements over the artists who play only within a limited radius.

With very affordable and easy-to-remove stickers — and even car magnets — you create a great level of visibility to all those driving by you . . . or if you’re a fast driver, driving by them.

Adding smaller stickers to your gear cases and even your luggage again is a great way to keep a brand that much more visible and seen by that many more people. As you add stickers, magnets, and other logos to your vehicle, your car, and your cases, make sure your name, logo, and website URL are always large and prevalent.

Although you are endorsed by a company and need to be promoting them, the reason you are out there is you, and the main focus of marketing is getting you out there the most.

If you go this promotion route for use on cars, cases, and luggage, realize that while you’re branding your name, website, and endorser’s information on to these items, you’re also in a way branding that you have expensive stuff. Especially with smaller vehicles, bring in all your gear. Make sure it looks like an empty vehicle in a hotel parking lot, and try to park in well-lit areas to avoid tempting potential thieves even more.

On the stage and in the studio

From setting up to sound check, you often deal with people who can directly benefit from your endorsed product and be potential purchasers. From the sound guy to the monitor guy who loves it and can further recommend an endorsed item to another band, this is where you can have a great representation effect.

From other musicians to musicians in the crowd during the show, showcase that gear in the best way possible to draw as much interest from others as you can. Invite other musicians to give the gear a test drive during sound check if they show a real interest in an item. Your endorsing company will love you for it.

Everyone has different tastes. In showing a type of effect pedal or set of pedals that you love, use, and are endorsed by, don’t get all riled up if someone says they suck or that something else is better. It makes you look foolish and the company you represent look less than professional. Stand strong behind the gear you use but don’t be that headstrong to have to get in an argument or a screaming match about which product is better and why. Pointless.

Wear it proudly, literally

Many endorsing companies have a great deal of promotional merchandise or swag that includes T-shirts, hats, jackets, raincoats, coffee mugs, and so on. Ask for some of these items to help the promotion of the brand or company that’s supporting you.

Make sure to wear these items in a regular rotation when on the road or just in normal life to help to push and promote. This isn’t about wearing a T-shirt every day, but rather wearing an endorser’s shirt on a day when you’re doing interviews or on a road day when you’re traveling.

You don’t have to wear it on stage, and a promotional shirt doesn’t have to mess with your whole vibe or image, but show some extra support by donning that shirt or hat at least once a month and strive to get more people to see you and the brand standing behind you.