All Posts by Katsember

Why Every Musician NEEDS a Website

Discover Why Every Musician NEEDS a Website

I can hear the groans already. Especially from people who are not computer savvy. I get it. I do. But I’m still going to insist that you need one.

Why?

If you already have a Facebook page, a presence on Reverbnation and/or Soundcloud . . . why would I INSIST that you still need to have your OWN website?

The answer:

Online Real Estate

Say one of the three websites I mentioned above were to shut down. Although it seems unlikely that Facebook will cease to exist, I’m sure at one point that’s how a lot of people felt about MySpace, and even though it is still there-it isn’t used nearly as much.

I’ve learned that there is only one thing that you can count on . . . CHANGE IS INEVITABLE.

If you are pouring all of your hard work into building your network on one of those websites and it suddenly went under, poof, gone . . .

How Would You Feel?

Personally, I would be devastated. I had something similar happen to me once with a different online business I was building; when Google changed it's algorithm. Anyone else out there hit by that? Well, it would feel almost as bad, but probably worse because this is YOUR MUSIC, YOUR PASSION, YOUR CAREER we're talking about.

But let's just say it showed me how important it is to OWN whatever it is I am working on. And that, my friend, is why every musician, every author, every artist, every CREATOR needs a website.

Let me ask you a simple question:

What's better?

OPTION A

OPTION B



For me, it's an obvious choice. The webpage not only looks more professional and pleasing to the eye, but it's YOURS. No one can take it away from you.

I hope I've convinced you. Although I bet you're still stuck on how to ACTUALLY get one.

If you aren't "tech savvy" and really haven't a clue how to go about it my KISS ARTIST MARKETING METHOD will help walk you through the process.

The first thing you’ll need is your own domain name. Your name or band name (alone or with music after it) is what you want to get. It’s inexpensive and you’ll thank me later ;).

Once you have your website you’ll have a place that YOU CONTROL. You can design it to be anything you want it to be. You can slowly build it bigger over time with more content, more followers, more FANS.

You will still use the social media platforms, yes. They are very important to getting traffic to your website. But they are the funnel. Not the destination.

Another huge bonus of having your own website is that you can generate income from your website in many different ways. Far more than just selling your music. Something you can’t do with the social media platforms.

A few ways to monetize your website include putting Google Adsense ads on your site and making money as an affiliate. You can also make affiliate sales from iTunes and Amazon (there are actually a TON of ways to make money as an affiliate.)

As an affiliate of iTunes and Amazon you not only could make money from sales from your own music, but from other artists as well.

That is another step we will discuss later. But for now, FOCUS on getting your website up and running. Follow my KISS ARTIST MARKETING METHOD to get started now.

Please feel free to leave me a comment below or contact me with any questions that you might have.

You can see my website(s) here:

http://www.kat-tracks.com
http://www.katsember.com

Wondering why I have two? It’s because I’m greedy. Just kidding. The first one, kat-tracks.com I’ve had for years, before my band name Katsember existed. I had worked on kat-tracks so much over the years I didn’t want to lose it, so I combined the two. Katsember is my band/brand name now.

You can have two also, if you want. πŸ˜‰ But one is more than enough!

QUICK RECAP:

– GET YOUR OWN WEBSITE so that you OWN a piece of online real estate that you have complete control over.

– MONETIZE YOUR WEBSITE – Make a profit from your music and other musicians. Make money as an affiliate for businesses like Amazon, iTunes and more. Use Google Adsense and make money simply from traffic alone.

– FUNNEL TRAFFIC TO YOUR WEBSITE via Social Media Platforms and gain followers and listeners

Make sense?

I hope so.

I know it can seem overwhelming in the beginning. But if you take baby steps each day and complete the steps in my KISS ARTIST MARKETING METHOD you’ll have something to market and be proud of in no time at all.

My guide breaks the process down very easily.

Trust me, I know how much of a MONSTER the internet can be. All of the distractions. All of the social media websites. ALL of the other people trying to keep you from FOCUSING ON YOU.

It’s time to FOCUS on YOU and YOUR MUSIC. Create your website, be active on the social media platforms. Take an interest in others (was that contradictory?) and your career will flourish.

We want it to flourish with your OWN website. We want the traffic you generate and the fans you love to be going to YOUR website.

If you keep them engaged on your website, they will have less distractions taking them AWAY from you. You know what it’s like on Facebook and Soundcloud, right? πŸ˜‰ Once you have brought a fan to your website they will be completely focused on YOU. And that means more listens, more support, more sales. All for you.

Please leave me a comment below. I would love to hear from you. Questions, comments, advice. All is welcome.

Thanks for reading! I look forward to hearing from you. πŸ™‚

Kat


The First Time I Heard Myself on TV…

I still get goose bumps when I think about it. It was a Saturday night. I had gotten an e-mail from a fan asking me if it was my song on Dance Moms.

My reply?

“No, don’t think so. I’ll check it out. Thanks!”

I highly doubted it was mine. I was never notified so how could it be?

As I sat there watching the episode they said had 30 seconds of my song, Season’s Journey, I nearly fell off my chair when I recognized the notes.

It was a poignant part of the show, which I hold no judgment for, but will confess I had never heard of before. A mom was saying goodbye to her daughter on the bus and it was very sad.

The music was perfect. Like I had written it for that very moment.

30 seconds may not seem like a long time, but it actually felt quite long while I sat there mesmerized at witnessing one of my dreams realized.

I had submitted my song to a music library years earlier. It was just sitting there waiting for someone who was looking for the perfect music. Little to my knowledge, it was picked up and put in the show.

Had it not been for that fan, I would a) never have known, and b) never received payment for it being used (I had to fight for it!)

So I thank that fan so much for speaking up! And encourage ANY of you to do the same.

Musicians have a hard time getting paid for their work. This isn’t news. It is in some ways getting better, but also in a way it is getting much, much harder. There just isn’t any way for us to keep track of it all!

I’ll never forget that day though. It isn’t a feeling I can describe to you. Not for the royalty I would be paid, but because my music was used in a moment that touched the viewers hearts. It was always my dream for my work to do that.

I still have hopes to hear my music in film. I have had some indie artists use my work before, so that’s a start! πŸ˜‰

Thanks for listening and reading! It means so much to me to have your support.

As a thank you for being one of my subscribers I wanted to share the track with you. You can download it below for FREE, no strings attached.

http://katsember.com/Download/FreeMP3/13_Seasons_Journey_KathleenSpencer.mp3

If you like it you can listen to more like it on my album “Explorations.”

Thanks for reading,

Kat

Why I Make Music…

I was only 6 years old when I discovered my love for music.

I still remember what it felt like to sit at my medium-sized Casio keyboard in Fairbanks, Alaska (it seemed larger at the time because I was only 6 years old) and play something for the first time. It was like I had been doing it for years.

I apparently had a good ear. So good that my teacher decided teaching me to read music was a waste of her time. So she taught me by ear. My first recital was playing The Blue Danube.

I’ll never forget it. I’ll especially never forget falling on my butt going to get my trophy afterward (heels are not my friend. Never have been, never will. Why I was wearing heels at THAT age, I will never understand.) But, I’ve decided that now, if a STAGE is present, heels on my feet will not be! I may even go barefoot. Just to be safe.

So…that first time at the Casio keyboard was the beginning of my love for music. And I guess you could say that the rest is history. Well, maybe not history yet. I’m not THAT old πŸ˜‰

Music has been an integral part of my life ever since. It is in my blood. It is who I am. Playing, singing or creating is how I breathe and definitely is when I feel the most alive. If you haven’t discovered what makes you feel that way yet, keep looking. The feeling is worth it.

It was the same when I picked up the flute. I could play it as though I always had. A natural they say. It’s a blessing to me and one I will never take for granted. Many other instruments are the same. And singing. I remember singing Right Here Waiting for my 6th grade talent show. Beforehand I had sung a little for my friends who said “you sound JUST like him.” A gift I still have with, no not every singer, but many-I can match their tone, timbre, nuances. Sadly during the recital my microphone was off (I was singing a duet so everyone thought I was JUST playing the piano). I didn’t really start singing for people to hear until recently.

My piano teacher in Washington after I moved at the age of 9 finally decided to teach me to read music. And thank goodness she did. It opened up a whole new world for me.

I played the flute in the band starting in the 6th grade and also played in the Vancouver Youth Symphony in high school.
I remember once, because I wasn’t much of a fan of practicing, my mom threatened to stop my piano lessons. I burst into tears. (I actually did practice…when no one was home, because my sister didn’t care for my “learning” mistakes-but of course my mom didn’t believe this.) But I was always prepared for my recitals and played perfectly (minus the stage fright freezes). My teacher used to make us memorize our songs, which I was good at…except when the nerves would hit and suddenly my mind was a blank.

It took me quite a few years to tackle my stage fright issues and I’m happy to say that they have dissipated greatly. Although…if I ever play on a stage wearing heels in front of a big audience…I can guarantee you I’ll be nervous! But then…I’ll probably opt to leave the heels at home.

Having music be my “career” was never my plan. I wouldn’t even call it my career now, because for me career has a negative feel to it, since so often people aren’t doing what they love. But for me, music IS what I love so although it is hard work to produce and market and get my creations out there. Creating is never work. Creating is magic.

Composing didn’t happen for me until I stopped taking piano lessons at the age of 18. Suddenly, I discovered a new facet to music I had never known. My first album was created solely for me. I had no choice in the compositions, they simply came to me and I wrote them down. Writing them down was the hardest part. After I had 12 songs I decided it would be cool to have my own CD. So I made one and bought 1000 copies. I figured those 1000 copies would sit in my closet for years and just be given to friends and family.

But then entered YouTube. I decided to put one of my songs up with some pictures as a visual for the sounds. And all of a sudden I had fans! Global fans. And many were requesting sheet music. I didn’t even have sheet music!

It was an accidental introduction to what is now my livelihood, not just financially. But spiritually. Creating music and writing books is everything to me. I never feel more alive when I have written something that 1 second earlier had not existed.

It’s exhilarating. Liberating. And simply amazing.

And that is why I AM a Creator. It is who I am. The only choice I have in the matter is actually taking the time to do it. And that is hardly a choice sometimes. πŸ™‚