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Starting And Running A Marketing / Street Team

A marketing or "street" team, simply put, is a group of people (the team members or "marketing representatives") located in different areas who assist you in executing your marketing plan and expanding its reach to other territories. If your team is large enough, its reach will allow you to take on more sophisticated, expansive, and national promotions than you could handle without a team. Putting a street team together is a very cost-effective way of getting help with your marketing efforts, especially if you are a solo act or a band without a large business team in place to assist you. Many artists that developed from the grassroots level reaped significant benefits from the efforts of widespread, dedicated marketing team. Guster, Kittie, and The Clarks are all midsized bands who put together marketing teams of sometimes hundreds of dedicated reps whose efforts had a direct impact on the groups' developing careers, attracting record-label deals and impressive national tours. In urban music, street teams are a primary part of artists' marketing plans, and a significant portion of every urban artist's marketing budget is dedicated to manufacturing promotional tools for street team use. This shouldn't be surprising, when you take into consideration that "urban" music almost by definition comes from "the streets." It makes sense that initial marketing efforts would be concentrated at these grassroots levels. In fact, street marketing teams are so important for all developing artists, that almost every major label (and many independent ones) develop street teams in-house, responsible for assisting with the marketing of all their new releases. I created the Alternative Marketing Department at Mercury Records and developed and oversaw its Marketing Team for three years. Our reps' efforts were integral in assisting several great bands break through or cross over to platinum-level success, including 311, The Mighty Mighty BossTones, Cake, and The Cardigans, to name a few. Many developing artists assume that they will be unsuccessful at putting a dedicated street team together until they have already achieved some degree of success. Not so. You can-- and should-- start a street team at the very beginning of your career. In fact, that's when you'll need their help the most.
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