Hello all, it’s me, Beni Barca, now blogging for The Daily Rind. Today I’m here to talk about Music Videos… or more specifically, YOUR music video. What’s that? You say you have no music video? What a shame. You know how important they can be, right? Yes, I realize you’ve already got your song on YouTube, playing to a picture of your cats playing Scrabble, which I’m sure has already gained you many fans in the LOLcat sect of humanity, but I had something more, uh, traditional in mind. I know that the early stage resistance to this is generally the lacking of funds and/or creativity, but there are also a lot of people who don’t understand the benefits of an actual music video. I have come today to pull back the veil on that mystery!
First off, lets discuss WHY you need an actual music video. Music videos are, first and foremost, an excellent promotional tool. Pairing a song with complementing visuals can boost interest, explain an intention, or completely change the way people feel about a song. There have been many songs that only caught my attention once I saw the music video.
Secondly, a good video performance can help promoters and booking agents get a better feel for an artist/band’s personality and performance ability. This is especially beneficial to a new act that hasn’t done many live shows yet. Also, bloggers love to get their hands on music with a visual edge. Music bloggers receive lots of audio tracks, so an actual music video will help you to stand out in the crowd… and if the video is creative enough, many non-music bloggers may want to include it as well.
But it doesn’t end there…
Music videos are also a great bargaining tool to entice your fans to buy your ENTIRE album, instead of just your single and/or cherry picked album cuts. How does that work, you ask? Well, here are two words that can change your career: “Video Bundle.” As I’m sure you are aware, the majors have been doing this for years… and so can you! Giving away your creative and interesting music video is an excellent perk for purchasing the entire album. Fans LOVE freebies! I assure you, there are a number of albums in my collection that I have purchased specifically for the bundled video content… at least two of which I didn’t even preview before I purchased, LOL!
Now, let’s tackle that early stage resistance. First off, lets talk about cost. Gone is the era of industry standard six figure music videos. Even the majors rarely venture into that price bracket these days. Honestly, it’s not necessary. Much of the cost of shooting videos, back in the day, was the film. People still shoot on film, when they have simultaneously the budget and preference for that aesthetic, but most people shoot music videos digitally these days. Now, you COULD shoot on an F1, or a RED, or some other cinema quality camera, and that would be beautiful, but in all honesty, you can get excellent quality video off of many Digital SLR cameras, such as the Canon 5D.
Yes, yes, I know, you don’t have and can’t afford a 5D… not a problem. Observe, if you will:
Yeah… that’s a shootout between a Canon 5D MKII and the iPhone 4S running the native camera app. I can only assume that you can achieve similar results with an iPod Touch, and you probably have one or the other lying around already. With proper (or creative) lighting, and a little effort in editing and post production, you too can crank out professional looking music videos.
Now… the second half of that, the creative part. I can’t really help you with that, LOL! That’s all on you, but a good rule of thumb is to not try to do more than you can handle. If you try to make a $0 budget music video look like a Michael Bay film, you are destined to fail, but if you keep things simple and within reason, I’m sure you’ll be fine!