Music Promotion

10 Pro Tips for Throwing a Successful Album Release Party

You've put in the hours, endured sleepless nights, and put your heart and soul into your now complete creative accomplishment - your next album. 

Releasing new music is a colossal achievement deserving celebration and attention. One of the best and most effective ways to gravitate ears toward your new album release is through a good old-fashioned release party. 

Learn how you can grow fan engagement and build anticipation for your upcoming music releases through our ten tips for throwing a successful release party

1. Determine Your Budget 

What’s a successful party without throwing some coins to the cause? Sitting down and determining your budget is step number one to planning your album release party. Depending on how much money you’re working with, you can go two routes: charging admission at the door or keeping attendance free. Ideally, you’ll want to keep entry free. This is a launch party after all, not a concert or show. By not instituting a charge, you’re also guaranteeing more fans (or potential fans) come through the door. 

With that being said, you’ll likely be looking at the following charges to your wallet (unless you get an event sponsor, which we’ll touch on later): 

      • Venue fee and/or bar minimum
      • Posters and traditional advertising 
      • Digital advertising (sponsored or paid posts)
      • Merchandise Production 

These are the bare essentials. If you’ve got these three expenses covered, then you can certainly make do. And, of course, using your established connections in your city can help lower the cost too. Friendly with a bar owner? Hit them up. Have friends within the live music industry? See which local venue owners they know. If your event is sure to bring in business or foot traction (i.e., bigger talent, free drinks, etc.), you may be able to strike a deal.

2. Get an Event Sponsor 

Festivals, events, and conferences heavily depend on sponsors to help absorb costs and donate free products for the event (hello drink and beverage companies). Landing the right sponsor can also help promote your event and build brand awareness, so it’s important to be strategic about this. We recommend designing a sponsorship deck before your outreach so you can vocalize your goals and funding needs professionally. Sponseasy is a great platform to help you create a professional online sponsorship proposal in minutes. 

As for actually FINDING a sponsor, there are several digital tools that can help make the sponsorship search process seamless and easy. 

Here are a few we recommend: 

      • SponsorPark - Best for events under the arts, festivals, entertainment, and special causes. 
      • SponsorMyEvent - The ultimate marketplace for event sponsorships. All you have to do is create a profile, submit your event, and communicate with interested sponsors directly through the platform. Sponsorship transactions happen securely through the platform, so both parties are protected.

        Pro Tip: For an album release party, we urge you to look for beverage and food sponsors. Drink and appetizer costs rack up, and getting your sponsor to donate products could save a lot of money.

3. Determine Your Party's WOW Factor 

Adding a WOW factor to your party is a great way to get people talking and attendance up. The cool thing here is the world is truly your oyster…as long as you adhere to your venue’s policies. 

We’ve seen some pretty unique and successful party additions like: 

      • Flash Tattoos 
      • Raffling off private concerts
      • Free Drinks (see ‘Event Sponsors’ tip)
      • Special Guest Appearances 
      • Free Vinyl/Merchandise to the first 50 people in attendance 
      • Photo Booths 

Have fun with it. The idea is to give the press something to write about and generate post-event hype.

4. Promote Promote Promote 

This should go without saying, but we’ll say it anyway. The way you promote this event is one of the MAJOR keys to how your turnout will be. As mentioned in tip #1, it’s essential to set aside a budget for digital and physical advertising to help spread the word about your event. Here are some ideas you can implement in your promotional strategy:

Digital Advertising: 

      • Post about your release party on ALL social channels - Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, TikTok, Snapchat, etc. Be sure to mention your party’s ‘WOW’ factor (see tip #3) to build anticipation, and don’t forget to geotag your posts. 
      • Put ad spend behind your social posts. A little can go a long way, so if you have a smaller budget, consider putting even just $5 behind your post. Make sure you’re targeting a local audience or followers of friends. 
      • Create a Facebook event with your party’s date, time, address, the night’s line-up schedule, and a brief ‘About’ mentioning what you’re celebrating. Once you send out your invites to your friends, get them to confirm ‘Going’ as soon as possible. Higher numbers of people going and invited will spark interest amongst people that may not be familiar with your music (yet). 

            Physical Advertising: 

      • Hit up local bars, coffee shops, restaurants, or even light posts to tape or drop off your event fliers. Be sure to include your party’s date, time, address, line-up, and your party’s WOW factor.
5. Design + Order Exclusive Merchandise

Designing and printing special t-shirts, stickers, hats, vinyl, and posters is great for encouraging attendance, marketing your music, and ultimately paying off launch party costs. If you’re looking for a cheaper and efficient way to produce your merchandise, we recommend Bands on a Budget or Printify.  

If you’re well connected within the local art scene (or have talented designer friends), consider collaborating with them on merchandise designs. Teaming up with an established artist or designer can help increase your sales, increase your merch’s value, and drive curious followers of that artist to your music. It’s a win-win for everyone involved.

6. Carefully Curate Your Guest List

Don’t get us wrong - your release party should be open to everyone. However, it goes a long way to curate a priority guest list to extend personal invites to. This list should align with media outlets, press, industry professionals, local influencers, and other musicians. 

Big wigs aside, make sure you’re also putting your friends and family on this list. They deserve roses too. 

With this list, you should send out personalized invites and consider doing something above-and-beyond for these people. That can look like:

      • Priority entrance 
      • Free drink tickets 
      • Free merchandise 
      • Free tickets to future shows
      • Earlier entrance 

The idea is to get in good graces with these guests and network network network.

7. Find Opening Bands that Set the Mood  

Inviting local bands that align with your band or client’s sound is a great way to encourage more attendance and build anticipation for the album’s play-through. Find openers that bring the energy and set the mood so your audience is warmed up and ready once your band takes the stage. 

Make sure you’re also encouraging the openers to promote the party on their social channels and include them in your advertising. 

8. Secure Funding through the Venice Music Grant Program 

As we covered in tip #1, you're going to need to put down some coin if you want to throw an unforgettable release party. Getting said coin? That's where the Venice Music Grant Program comes in. Venice members have the opportunity to receive grant funding to bring creative projects to life! In the past, Grant winners have secured up to $2,000 in funding to turn their ideas into reality. 


9. Distribute Your Album in Advance

No brainer here - what’s an album release party if there isn’t a released album? Don’t get so carried away planning your release party that you forget to actually release your music! With Venice Music’s distribution tools, you can “set it and forget it” by scheduling and distributing your releases in advance - starting at only $14.99/year.

10. Promote Your Music Through Venice's Marketing Links 

Prior to the party, you'll need to create an easy way for your fans, listeners, and party guests to pre-save your new music! This is where Venice's Marketing Links come through. 

Marketing Links drive fans to your music on any streaming service through one simple, streamlined link. You can use these in your social posts, bios, website, QR codes, and other shareable mediums to seamlessly link them to a release you're promoting or gearing up to launch. 

Leading up to and during your release party, we recommend doing the following with your Marketing Links: 

      • Grow anticipation for your release by encouraging your listeners and party attendees to pre-save your new album in advance! Pre-saves will alert your fans when your release drops, and can even increase your chances of getting playlisted on Spotify! Spotify views pre-saves from your marketing links as an indicator of success and is more likely to playlist music with many pre-saves.
      • Leading up to your album release party, you'll be doing lots of promoting online and offline. When promoting your upcoming album drop or party on social, be sure to always include your Marketing Link in your captions or direct viewers to your social bio where the link should be included. If you're planning on posting flyers around town, create a QR code from your Marketing Link to include on the promo poster!

Venice Marketing Links

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