When releasing new music a band should always have cover art to accompany the single or collection of songs they are putting out. Especially if you are a brand new band. Before deciding to press play on a song a potential fan will see the cover art of your song. This is their first impression of your band.
When releasing singles, each song should have it’s own artwork. Why is that valuable? Promoting the song on any social media, digital distribution or streaming service will be that much easier. With album artwork, it becomes the band’s visual identity until their next album cycle. It must complement the band’s overall image, while also standing out among the rest of the bands discography.
Releasing singles can help keep current fans and your growing audience engaged. Do you remember the last time your favorite band released one new song out of the blue and how excited you were? You probably shared their initial post and told someone about it, right? That is how your fans will treat the singles you release. You can also create content based on the artwork you have created to help support the single and drive sales, streams or at the very least awareness. The reality is a band needs to make money in order to survive and become your career.
Money is your oxygen. Still have fun, of course, but also know that you’ll need to become a marketing strategist, content creator, and a sales representative to succeed in making music a career. At least until you can afford to pay someone else to do those things for you.
If your fans are asking for you to put out a new album, then put out an album. If they are asking for more merchandise to wear — make it! They are your walking and breathing billboards. If they are asking your to play in a certain city, tell them to spread to word about your music so the demand is so great you have to come play! Supply and demand. Don’t be afraid to ask what your fanbase wants to hear and see from you next.
This is why have artwork is so important. It attracts potential fans to discovering your music. You want your cover art to be exceptionally great. Be ready to invest money into the artwork you have made just like you do to have your music recorded, music video and tee shirt designs. If you are lucky you have an aspiring graphic design or recording engineer in your band ask them if they are willing to invest time into creating things for the group. You can use the money that would normally invest in those things to invest in music videos, merch orders, or tour costs instead.
As humans we have two assets — money and time. If your time is more valuable to you then spend money to have others do work for you. If you value your money more then take the time to do things yourself as a group. The nice thing about being in a band is you can all work multiple jobs if necessary and split the costs of paying for designs, recordings, merchandise, music videos and traveling until the band can sustain itself.
Your ROI (return on invest) will be much great if you put your money in the right places. Things will happen much quicker for your band in you pay the price now rather than pay it later. Don’t waste time by waiting to release music. The mistake I’ve made in the past is waiting too long to put out new songs. That is why releasing singles is such a proactive thing you can start doing.
Your fans want more content from you, especially the die hard ones. Don’t make them wait if they don’t have too. If you're talented, write great songs and are authentic with your audience they will want to stick with you and follow everything you do if you are constant. People think in weekly increments so at the minimum give them weekly content that informs them about a song, your live show, or what you are currently up to as a group. Food for thought.