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Targeting Your Song Pitches To A Cut

Targeting Your Song Pitches To A Cut

Targeting a product to a sales prospect is nothing new.

Doing your research on your customer and tailoring your message and selecting the right product to pitch them is also nothing new.  It’s sales and marketing 101.

If you’ve ever boosted a facebook post and selected a “target” – you’ve done it.

You consciously found people who look like your customers or the customer you want by some sort of criteria.

That criteria can be demographics, interests or geography, but ultimately your goal is to be more precise in who you target your sales efforts toward.

Pitching songs is no different.

You’re actively trying to sell the product you’ve produced so it doesn’t languish on the back shelves of your warehouse, where it isn’t contributing to the bottom line of your business.

Pitching songs is selling your inventory.

Sorry, I don’t mean to make the whole thing sound like there’s not passion behind it, but even small business owners who love art and own a gallery have to turn a profit.  As a songwriter, you should want nothing less.

And, since part of profit is top line revenue, let’s talk sales!



Targeting can be one of your best tools in not only building your song chops but also adding to your sales skills.

It’s a way of making sure that:

  1.  What you’ve produced is being marketed to the right prospect, and
  2.  You are creating new songs that have a demand in the market place.

It’s sales 101: know your prospect and deliver a product they need.

I’m not saying you shouldn’t create songs that have imagery, depth and strong personal connections.

For the songs you’re pitching, be aware of which performers they may align with – that’s it.

I’m not proponent of changing your voice and writing style to fit a manufacturing process or some formula someone says exits.  Great songs are great songs.

And, more importantly, most of the best ones don’t actually follow the “formula” that guarantees a cut.  So – fly your individuality flag, but think about sales!

Targeting is a way of categorizing, creating and pitching a song in a way that might have a better chance of connecting or standing out to the prospect.


Two Ways To Target

Leveraging your current songs:

Looking across your song inventory and finding the song(s) that fit an artist or the type of songs they sing. You might know a specific artist is looking for songs, so you’ll look through songs you’ve already created and determine which are a good fit to pitch.

Writing new songs:

Figuring out what will fit into an artists portfolio, their sound, lyrically what they prefer, etc. and then write a song specific to that artist.


Why Target If You’re Not At A Pro Level Yet?


Because You Aspire To Be!
This is one of the skills you should have when you do reach your goals. And, as you practice writing songs, this is a great exercise to engage in to grow your understanding of how hit songs are written.


It's A Great Research Tool
You’ll look at how a number of songs fit within a career of songs and then find opportunities within that knowledge.

There’s no better way to learn professional level song craft than to study it at the song level.


Targeting Practice Run


Pick An Artist
You’ll need to be able to write in a style for the artist you’re selecting, so select a few that are in your wheel house.

How do you so that?

1  Do your songs sound similar to songs being sung by a particular artist?  This will be your best first stop.

2  Run through your song catalogue and pick your best songs. Use the worksheet and write down 7 – 10 songs. To the right, write down who you could hear singing the song.

3  Who pops?  Is there a swim lane you’re in already? If so, write down the artist’s name.  If not, decide where you have the best chance of creating a song.  Move on to the research step.


Do The Research
Write down the artist’s name and start listening to their catalogue and reading interviews.  You’ll use this information to start filling out a song information and artist profile.

1  Song Information

Go through the songs and listen for patterns or common themes you might hear.

– Note the keys the artist sings in, and their vocal range.

– Are there certain words, images or phrases they use consistently?

– Do you hear any common theme (e.g., Kenny Chesney ?

– Is there a song length or structure they seem to favor?

– Are there common songwriters on their hit songs?  On any songs?

– What are the common traits of the songwriters they use most?

2  Artist Profile

Read any interviews out there about their song selections.

Look for clues:

– What are they drawn to in a song?

– Are there themes they feel represent them from a brand perspective?

– Are there any personal stories that might tie to a larger song idea?

– Do they write on their songs or just choose songs written by other people?


Write A Song
Note the elements you feel should be included to give you the best opportunity to resonate with the artist.

And more importantly, the items that would result in an immediate “no”.


FREE Worksheet
Walk through the steps above with this handy worksheet: Clicking Here


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