Hey, this is podcast number two of the new Booking and Promotion podcast series. This one focuses on creating professional low-quantity runs of CDs.
To hear the podcast, just click on the player bar just below this sentence here...
This is the Indie Band Manager Booking and Promotion Podcast with your host Charlie Cheney on Vocalo.org. This show brings you tips and tricks to help you book better shows and promote those shows more effectively so you get bigger and better audiences for your performances. Catch all the podcasts at www.indiebandmanager.com
Hi, this is Charlie Cheney and I'm continuing my podcast series on booking and promotion. I want to continue on with our professional cd concept. I want to have a professional cd to distribute, I want to be able to hand it out. I know we all agree that digital is the way to go for distribution but also, when you're tyring to book a show you're trying to get press, it's important to have a good-looking physical cd as well.
One of the cool things about modern technology is that the price has come way down. In the past the break even, the breaking point to make it a reasonable cost per unit was a 1000 cds. You always had to buy 1000 cds. You could see in advertisements that would be $1000 or $1200 complete, so there was always that initial investment and you always had to have 1000 copies of the laying around and there's been an awful lot of stories of people who've not sold those 1000 cds and they've got boxes full of cds sitting in their basement.
But the cool thing now is that there are some companies out there that are doing low quantity runs now. One of them, one that I used recently was TuneCore.com. Now TuneCore has actually partnered with another company to do the actual manufacturing, it's a company out of Minneapolis, St Paul area, and I got to deal with them directly, but for all intensive purposes you'll be dealing with TuneCore if you call them up. I'm sure there's other manufacturers that do the same thing, now I'm not beholden to TuneCore, but I thought they did a pretty good job for me. But the cool thing about it is they can do runs of 50.
So if you want your cds done in jewel cases, shrink wrapped, in full color printing, four color on all the cover and inside art and the cd as well, not just one color or two colors, but full four color printing on the cd, you can get that done for about $3 per cd. The first 50 cds cost about $3 each and there's a $35 setup charge, so the total cost of a really professional looking cd for the first run is only about $185, under $200.
The great thing about it is that once you've placed the order and give them your artwork (which I made in Photoshop completely on my own, I just made the PDFs myself) you give them all the artwork and you give them the cd of the music and they will run those first 50 for you. Then you can order another 50 whenever you want, whenever you need them.
Of course you can order in any quantity you want; you can order 1000, 2000, whatever you need. But it's worked out great for me to order 50 at a time and use them to book the shows and get press and so forth. So if you're going to make a cd to start to book yourself, you're trying to promote yourself and get out there, and like I said you'll need the required startup items to go out and book a show, you need that professional cd, look into TuneCore.com, find out about their short run printing. They turn it around pretty quickly, it can be done within a couple of weeks. Like I said if you do all your artwork like I did, do it all yourself, there's almost no startup cost, just your time, it looks great and is very, very affordable.