The secret to getting signed to a major label is really not that complicated.

Actually, it’s pretty simple but that doesn’t make getting a record deal easy.

Keep in mind that a record label is a business – a music business.

When a major label signs you they are buying you – a music business.

You need to be making money before they’ll buy your company (your act).

In this article and Podcast, we’ll cover some things that will help make your band or act marketable and attract record label attention.

Podcast URL:

Major Labels Are Looking For:

1. A Huge Social Following

Major record labels will want to see that you have a large social following. 

YouTube, Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat and Twitter are the core social networks you should build. 

Master one channel and then move on to another. Invite your fans from one channel to the other.

Post channel specific content to each. Don’t post the same thing across all social networks. 

2. A Health YouTube Account

YouTube is the cream of the crop when it comes social networks. 

Besides posting regular music videos you can post things such as:

  • Daily or weekly vlog updates
  • Behind the scenes
  • In the studio for recording or rehearsing

Use your YouTube channel to not only spread the word about your music but also to give the world an inside look at who you or your band really is.

Let us know who you are personally. People connect with people. Don’t make yourself out of reach.

3. Decent Sales Numbers For Your Music

Like I mentioned before, you are trying to make it in the music “business”. 

You need a good product to attract major label attention.

“Good” doesn’t mean the music sounds good and is performed well either. That is subjective.

Good means  – people are buying it.

A regional act in my area attracted major label attention after selling over 10,000 copies of their CD.

They created their own independent label to release their music.

By the time they recorded and released their 4th album they knew how to run an indie record label and make money in music.

They also knew how to get the attention of radio and press.

By then, since they never quit, they had a decent fanbase as well. 

How Creating Your Own Indie Label Can Attract Major Label Attention

  1. Shows the major label you understand music is a business and you know how to run one successfully
  2. Forces you to be successful before the major label will consider investing in you
  3. Teaches you the ins and out of how a record label operates
  4. Gives you the skills needed to be promoted to a major label

4. A Large Fanbase

Major record labels want to invest in a low-risk endeavor. 

If they see you have a large fanbase they see a large opportunity of customers willing to buy your products.

The more fans you have on social networks, buying your music and talking about you to their friends the better.

Bon Jovi has sold over 100,000,000 records. That’s 100 MILLION. Recently they released “100,000,000 Bon Jovi Fans Can’t Be Wrong“. That’s the fanbase you’re shooting for in your career.

In addition…

Basically, record labels want you to be successful before they’ll invest in a “sure thing”.

Yes, they want you to do all the hard work before they’ll “risk” investing in you.

A lot of it makes sense.

Major labels don’t have time or money to invest in artist development.

You have to do it yourself and do it well.

Most artists on major record labels were originally signed to a small independent label.

They worked hard and had success on a smaller level and that attracted the attention of the major label.

Major record labels are more likely to invest in a indie record label than sign an unknown artist.

Think about it. Would you be willing to invest your hard earned money into someone who has already been signed to a indie label or someone that no one has yet to “believe” in?

The Secret To Getting Signed

The simple answer is independent record labels.

There are several reasons why you should start by submitting to independent record labels.

Why You Should Submit To Indie Record Labels

  1. If success on an indie record label then majors will come.
  2. Often Indie Record Labels have small rosters so you can get more attention.
  3. Small record labels can work with artists individually.
  4. Indie record labels often specialize in one genre and they do it well.
  5. Deals are often more favorable for both the artist and the label (as apposed to Major Label deals favoring the label almost always.)

The bottom line is you have to generate success on your own even before an indie record label will consider you.

Both, major and indie labels will want you to be performing 100% of the time so that you’re constantly reaching new potential fans.

Now, if you’re looking to submit your music to Indie Record Labels, then you should check out

I created GigFaster for this exact purpose – for indie musicians to submit their music to indie record labels.

Submit your music today and we will reach out to the labels until we get a response.

Regardless of the route you take, you have to do something everyday.

Success won’t fall on your lap.

Get out there, work hard and never quit.

Craig Kelley

About Craig Kelley

Craig helps indie artists book more gigs, promote their music and submit to record labels @ GigFaster and GigFaster University . His latest release is his 7th album, Not So Blue. His band has supported Grammy artists including Kenny Wayne Shepherd, Rick Derringer, Gary Hoey, Joan Jett, Fuel and many more. He is also the host of The 5 Minute Podcast For Musicians.

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