Approaching A Brand To Partner With
New Equipment? Yes Please!
For an independent artist trying to find their way early on in their music career, any help is valuable. The money can sometimes be low and you might be struggling to pay for the latest piece of equipment. You’ve heard the stories or have peers that have secured a sponsorship or endorsement deal with an established brand, and you wonder to yourself, “how on earth did they secure such a ‘lucrative’ deal?” The thought of getting equipment at a discounted rate or even free is so enticing, but you just don’t know how,where or who to ask.
Artist Relations With Roland
Fortunately we spoke with Jamie Franklin - the Artist Relations Manager for Roland to give us some advice on how best to approach a brand and build that relationship. Roland is a one of the lead manufacturers of electronic musical instruments, equipment & software, consisting of digital upright pianos, synths, a variety of guitar products and much more.
Jamie joined us on the podcast to talk about the different relationships Roland has with all the artists around the world.
If you’d like to hear the entire interview you can watch it here.
One thing I took away from the interview was that the relationship between Roland and the artists they work with was really important to Jamie. Just having that relationship and nurturing it is all he cared about, regardless of the discounted items, the social media statistics and the shared social posts. Jamie was focused on how Roland could help the artist in their music career.
Jamie mentioned how he gets about 20 emails daily from artists asking for a sponsorship deal. So I asked him what advice could he give to an independent artist who wants to approach a brand and what should they not do. This is what he had to say:
Keep It Short
The introductory email should be kept short and concise. All you need to include is a short paragraph about yourself and a few links to your work, that could be a Facebook page or links to your recent music or videos. Nobody has the time to read an essay about your style of music and where you plan to take it. Remember Jamie goes through about 20 of these types of emails each day. Can you honestly see him reading your memoirs?
Think Of It Like A CV
This piece of advice aligns with keeping the email short. The introductory email is the stepping stone for building a relationship with the brand, don’t jump the gun and think you’re already buddies with them. Show your credentials and let them be the judge your work. Include a little background on yourself, short plans for the future and add links to your work for them to see/hear.
Go Above And Beyond
Be a little creative when reaching out to brands, do something a different to grab their attention. One example that Jamie shared was a specific artist approached him but not only did he share his music he also made another mixtape that featured other artists that he liked and thought Jamie would like too. That really resonated with Jamie and it had a more lasting impression of that artist. What can you do to stick out of the norm and go above and beyond?
I remember when we started Reload we had nothing, absolutely no equipment to our name. We worked our arses off, created great content and generated a following. Throughout that time we reached out to several different brands and there were many times that we got shut down, but we still kept going. Fortunately we were able to secure a few deals, but that’s because we worked hard and approached brands the right way.
So if you’re an artist looking to secure a deal, listen to what Jamie has to say and try to implement it next time when you reach out to a brand. Why not try it out with Roland? You can email them at artist@Roland.co.uk, you never know you might just secure your first endorsement deal.
You can listen to the full interview with Jamie below, not only do we talk about Roland and building a relationship with such a brand, but we also talk about how Jamie ended up in that role and what drives someone like him.