Eyes for Gertrude launched album to sell out venues

It was a huge pleasure to work with folk, pop country due Eyes for Gertrude.

My press campaign for this fantastic band included these publications.

A campaign for Eyes for Gertrude Produced

FB FACTORYBristol Post

Bristol 247 Magazine

Drunken Werewolf

Music Unbuttoned

Red Lips Music

Press Party

Top 40 Charts

Your Music Press

For independent artists wanting to release music

Most people naturally find it hard to firstly remember then to boast about their achievements and present these in a confident and objective manner that will maximise readers’ interest in them.

As a result, we all tend to underplay our own achievements and instead try to tell people why we are as good as, better than or different from other people.

In my experience as an editor on various publications and being sent press releases, I believe that:

  • Human beings tend to feel different from others when they haven’t found out that others feel the same.
  • Our actual experiences and achievements are what distinguish us.
  • People like facts.
  • It is our natural humanity that connects us so let people see yours.

Your music will speak for itself, so the object of my service is to allow the maximum amount of people know about you and hear your music.

No Shortage

There is no shortage of people who want to hear good new music in any genre.

If you are an independent artist who is planning to release a single or album, I provide a music-savvy press article writing service to create publicity material (bios, release info, website pages etc) that stands out from the rest, which means it reaches a wide audience of readers to direct them to your music.

Published

I’ve had over 25 years experience as a journalist in which time my work has been published in a great variety of places as I can quickly find the story to pique editors’ interests by choosing what information to include and presenting it to read with maximum credibility and impact.

If you are an independent artist who would like to release your music, I can work with you once you have:

  • A recording on MP3.
  • This uploaded as an audio file on Youtube or Soundcloud (as these can be embedded and heard instantly on most music and press websites and blogs).
  • Imagery: either a cover image for your music and/or photographs of your music act.
  • Links to your social media and/or website so people can follow your future releases.

Then I can design a print and online press campaign which includes:

  • A story in press-ready article form (which you can use wherever you like).
  • Distribution of this with your imagery around 30 or more places online to reach media, music industry and the public to direct them to your music.
  • Traffic to your social media/Soundcloud/Youtube Channel and/or website.

To maximise use of the above service and achieve independent record sales, followers and music industry and media interest, you may need:

  • Licensing and distribution to music buyers through digital music retailers such as iTunes.

Additionally, you may want to boost your release’s reach through some radio plugging to use one of these bolt on services through an existing music company:

  • Placement on websites with databases of international subscribers amongst clubs, DJs, radio, airlines and more music outlets.
  • Live phone-in radio interviews.
  • Pre-recorded radio interviews across franchises of national radio stations.
  • Pre-recorded music sessions across franchises of national radio shows.
  • A mix by a Ministry of Sound/Hed Kandi DJ/producer.

Any or all of the above bolt on services will generate a report for you containing ratings, feedback and confirmation of plays from all those that your release reached.

As a music promoter for over a decade in London, I noticed characteristics that were going to increase a music act’s chances of success. I believe these are:

  • An open and charming attitude devoid of entitlement.
  • Songwriting
  • Arrangement
  • Stage presence and appearance.
  • A genuine passion for what you do.
  • Good organisation.

As Katherine Hepburn said:

If you always do what interests you, at least one person is pleased.”

More info: sophiesweatman@sweetsoundpr.co.uk

Sweet Sound PR – no sweat

Writing services for music acts to publicise their releases online and in print.

Follow this link here to see a series of posts written and edited by me for a series of music clients for Matchbox Recordings

PRINT_MATCHBOXCOMPANY_LOGO_smallHaving worked in music promotion between 1995 and 2004 in various London venues, during which time I built up a portfolio of published articles about new emerging music artists, I work as radio, press and online PR manager for a music PR company and am now keen to take on new artists who want to publicise their music releases to the press and public.

Please email me on: sophiesweatman@yahoo.co.uk (while I set up new PR address) or call my office on 01326 619311 or 07863554763 to find out what I can do for or see the Sweet Sound PR – just launched page on this website.

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New press release on music page

Please check out my music page for latest release on Mohammad Reza Mortazavi, an Iranian hand drummer who played in the Performance Centre at Falmouth University, organised by event manager Christina Kyle.

Musicians, especially those in Cornwall, please do send in MP3s for possible radio play on either Sophie’s Laughing Alarm Clock Show (Tuesdays 9am-11am) or Enhancing Your Chances Show (Sundays 7.30-8.30pm) and for possible future music promotion in Falmouth.

Thanks to the Falmouth Packet

comedymicI really appreciate the local papers in Falmouth.

The Falmouth Packet continued to support my 4th comedy night at the Falmouth Watersports Centre with a piece in last week’s issue. Plus 3 punters came along after reading it after the July night was cancelled. They came back!

Here’s the article. Pictures to follow when finished film. (Yes trying out my Canon camera from charity shop).

The first night in May they put this piece in the What’s On Section.

The next comedy night at Falmouth Watersports (yes, go on have a giggle) will be on 25 September.

Farm Shops, Radio and Comedy

Each week I do an hour radio show on Sundays from 7.30pm-8.30pm – The Enhancing Your Chances Show. Then on Tuesday mornings I do the breakfast slot from 7.30am-9.30am – Sophie’s Laughing Alarm Clock Show. After Tuesday morning’s stint, I went to the Perranarworthal Farm Shop and Michelle Burley Hodge was there.

I’d done an interview with Michelle, aired on Sunday 17 March, for an article promised to the West Briton. Michelle showed me a copy of article, which I found I had missed in the 7 March West Briton. However, a copy was still knocking around in my room. Then I heard that a woman had gone to Michelle’s stall because she heard the radio interview! Wow.

Comedy

I’m organising a promoted comedy night for emerging talent in Falmouth starting on 15 May called the Falmouth Comedy Floor. There are already 2 active comedy promoters in the area, so luckily we all get on and work together. One new night is at Tyacks in Camborne (now I know there’s no u in Camborne).Here’s my set from the April one.

The Falmouth Comedy Floor is twinned with a night I launched with a team of 3 in December 2009, now in the Time Out Top Ten Open Mic Nights in London. Here’s the Freedom Fridge website with the Cornwall outpost page.

In a couple of weeks, am starting doing music PR on a freelance basis for Matchbox Recordings, so please see my vintage Music PR for a taste of what’s to come.

Enjoying the Performing Arts in Falmouth

Comedians in Falmouth

Since I moved to Falmouth in 2011, I’ve seen two of favourite comedians perform within walking distance of where I live. One, Mark Steel, was at the Pavillion and the other, Josie Long, was at the Poly.

Thanks for the pose, Josie.
Thanks for the pose, Josie.

In a year I’ve also seen Henning Wehn, who was fabulous, Robin Ince, Seann Walsh (not my cuppa) and Jo Caulfield (laughed throughout). At the Pavillion, I also saw Simon Day from the Fast Show who seemed ill-advised in his performance of a reading from his autobiography for £14 a head.

It’s not just comedians but local theatre companies too. Owdyado Theatre toured Wrong-doings and Wake Up Calls at the Stop-Off Motel, which I saw at the Poly. Last night I saw Near-Ta Theatre’s Christmas Time in which two guys in jail get themselves worked up into Christmas excitement which climaxes with their own nativity musical.

Here’s a link to my review of Josie Long at the Poly in the local paper.

Secrets to writing press releases that get published

Press releases, or so-called ‘below the line advertising’, are a very effective way to promote your artistic activities. After all, people in your local area or industry would want to know what is going on. Remember that while you are writing.

Format

The simple format for a good press release is the same one you would use if you were asked to write an article as a journalist:

  • Who
  • When
  • What
  • Where
  • Why – the most interesting one that would form the central angle of your piece.

Despite current trends for what I call ‘me-me-I-I’ journalism, mainly employed by columnists who are famous or named journalists, a press release wants to be objective, in my opinion, to give it the best chance of being used.

Lively Quotes

If you don your journalist’s trilby, say out loud something you would say about what you are promoting. You could get someone else to interview you. The aim of this is to pick out some words that sound like a person speaking in a way that reveals their character and honest feelings about the event.

Promoters

If you are holding an event in a venue with a known promoter or shop owner, why not get them to give you a quote?

Remember to put details in between commas:

  • Full name
  • Age
  • Place of residence. If this is not local, then add:
  • If they have an historical connection from the area, add this briefly by saying ‘family from’, ‘grew up’, ‘born in’ etc
  • Relevant label for what you do, ‘artist’, ‘songwriter’ etc. Or for someone else, ‘promoter’ etc.

ie Comedian Rachel Formby, 34, who live in London and was raised in Cambourne, says, ‘I never thought it would happen.’

Opening

Your first paragraph wants to sum up, in less than 30 words, what the event is about. To do this you could mention:

  • Who is the event for?
  • The urgency, ie next week, this Sunday, the first gig by…
  • Why the event has come about
  • A colourful picture of something current, talked about, or a recent news event that relates to your show.

These above 4 points are ideally incorporated into a concise summary of who, where, what, when. Why? would be in the second paragraph. Here’s an example:

the West Briton

Visit my Art (Current) page to see more recent examples.

The most important thing is to get write something down and send it in.

Look through your local newspapers to find the email address to send your news too.  Phone up or look for deadlines, so the issue your item appears in gives readers time to arrange to come along.

Think of a triangle with its tip facing downwards: This is the technique used by many newspapers. This means that your piece can be fit into whatever space is available. If you start with an intro that sums up who, when, what and where, then write a para on why. Follow that with your quote. Then provide any more information, what people need to do, buy tickets, turn up, bring a bottle, etc. If you can get readers to take an immediate action, while they are still inspired with your event, that will be a winner!

At the bottom, put a listing in this format:

TITLE OF EVENT

Date, time, entry price. Doors: (8pm-late)

@ Venue, address, your telephone number. Venue telephone number.

If your story strikes a chord with the newspaper, they may phone you up and interview you.

Photography:

  • Make this 300dpi (high resolution)
  • Make sure no business icons, logos, or other product brands are showing.
  • Say what the photograph shows in plain, informative, factual words
  • Choose a picture that tells a story if possible. Ideally this would sum up your event. Try to include yourself, other people and give their names.

Social Media:

When putting your event on Facebook, try to ensure that the date, time, venue, its location or address and entry price appear in what people receive. You could test this with a friend before you send out your bulk of invitations.

If you are interested in promoting events, products or getting people to a venue, I recommend Malcolm Gladwell’s book Tipping Point. The easier you make it for people to turn up, by including nearby railway stations or bus routes, the better.

Tip:

If you are promoting a profitable business event or launching a new company, try to keep this information subtle, and at the end of the piece. Put what the readers would be interested in before any information that you want to get out there. Try to avoid:

  • Saying how great it is.
  • Using adjectives or adverbs
  • Using an impersonal, formal style.

Remember, it doesn’t have to be a piece of poetry, even if you are promoting a poetry event. Include information that the newspaper would like, arts, events, community interest, local characters, and what readers would be drawn to.

Enhancing Your Chances Radio Show

Sundays on Source FM at 7.30pm

On Sunday 28 October, at 7.30pm I will be starting my radio show: Enhancing Your Chances on Source FM in Cornwall.

Instead of talking covering what how-to books already tell you about writing, painting, comedy etc, this show will be ongoingly investigating ways to pursue your creative skills.

Guests will be from the worlds of writing, film, comedy, dance, journalism, visual art, event organisation or acting, plus more as I find them. I will be asking them how they started in their careers, what hurdles they crossed at the beginning of those careers, what opportunities they are currently taking and their plans going forward for these activities.

One aspect that how-to books often don’t mention is how to deal with response from your chosen industry or the often experienced lack of response. I will look at the effects on industry, social mobility, diversity and quality of work in different areas that might result from the difficulty experienced by new entrants into a competitive creative industry.

I will also look at subjects including dyslexia that aren’t well catered for in academia and do a focus on successful people in the creative arts who appear on the Autistic Spectrum. i will review worthwhile reads about dyslexia and similar so-called ‘learning difficulties’ and the strengths often found in people who are ‘academically challenged.’