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The difference between independent (indie) record labels and major record companies

The difference between independent (indie) record labels and major record companies
By 23 November 2015 1258 Views No comments

The difference between independent (indie) record labels and major record companies

Independent record labels have existed forever and were the first companies to collectively sign groups of artists into channels for efficient networking and distribution. However most indie music labels have not got their own publishing house or distribution agencies to give your releases the kick they need. Some record labels don't even get onto Beatport. With is in mind, do your research first about who you're releasing with, the independent record company could be a single person working in a basement. That lack of manpower and networking won't get you awards or a chart topping status.

Major record labels on the other hand have in-house experts ready to make attractive covers, successful marketing strategies and much more. Through years of substantial experience and huge networks to rely on and share the load, major record companies have gotten the art of distribution and releasing down to a T.

The main difference between indie labels and major deals is you will get more exposure, better management and guidance. There are of course positives and negatives between the two options. Let's take a look.

Comparing indie labels with major record companies, which is better?

Most independent record labels are flexible and personal. If you strike a deal with a smaller company, you manage to before hand haggle and personalise your release strategy. Perhaps taking the design of your own artwork into your own hands. Big record companies would not allow this personalisation.

If you are active in a niche section of the music industry, then smaller labels give you better deals regarding sales income and still have the capacity to cover the niche market quite successfully. With that in mind, there's no reason to go commercial and loose potential income by getting hung out to dry by major record labels.

The real attraction of large distribution establishments is for the purpose of a commercial EDM release. Mixing your DJ name in with the famous and getting as much exposure as possible. Even if you don't see a penny from sales, club DJ jobs will fly in thanks to their strong network and management skills. For widespread music genres within EDM, this is a must have deal. Independent music labels on the other hand don't have the same reach, nor abilities to invest largely in the market research required to perfectly assign tracks to times and customers. Apps like Shazam are perfect tools for these major establishments, as all that tool does is generate huge amounts of consumer information. Shazam can pretty much predict which new track is going to be a hit or not. That info is more than valuable to any record label, however the big companies are those who can afford it. Another EDM tactic profiting the big and famous.

How do famous DJs do it and get so big?

All famous artists most likely started out working with an indie record company. Once discovered. Their management or selves then managed to land major record deals that changed their music career. Such a difference a single deal can do to a DJ career is clearly the attraction of our 360° Package. Others try to make it on their own and a minute percentile succeed.

Getting famous as a DJ is a dream scenario. Why? Well name one entertainer who ever lived who didn't want bigger crowds to perform in front of. As an entertainer you want to be on-stage and the more people there to apprecaite your DJ set, the better.

How can you be famous and follow the footsteps of the big DJ names out there today such as Aviicii. Either have a relative who owns a division of one of the largest music companies in the world called Universal Music Group, or fight to get yourself a ground shaking deal. There is a third option to speed up the process. Let us do it for you. If you're interested, then go check out our 360° Package deal.

But how to go about getting a record deal with a major label?

Think of it this way. In business, an agreement is a trade-off. If a major record company agrees to invest in your potential, you better have something to offer in return. So ask yourself this, do you? If you're not sure, then read through the simplified checklist below.

1. Are your tracks competitive with those being released by the great DJ names and labels today?

If not, then consider hiring a music producer to get that quality you need to tick off this point.

2. Have you had any successful releases, even on independent record labels?

Our 360° Package will allow you to answer yes to this one also.

3. What's your following like, do you have a strong fan base to bring to the record company?

Marketing is key here. Make sure your fan base is substantial enough to impress and attract DJ agencies also.

4. Do you have a strong brand for your cool DJ name? Website, logo, etc.?

Again, we can help here also. Just contact us for some more assistance.

If you answer yes to all the above, then head over to a list of record company contacts including independent record labels and start applying for a release of your tracks via their distribution channels. If not, then make sure to tick these off first. Producer Factory is here to help and our 360° Package can encompass a personalised selection of services for you.