Here's an example of an artist who used all that Mastermind had to offer.
The Von, based in Florida, USA, came to us wanting to promote their music to press and radio. Their music was good though we thought their overall brand could use some enhancing as it was hard to see what The Von stood for. Nonetheless, we agreed to initially commence a press and radio campaign and accomplish some coverage so we could get feedback from the industry on the next best moves forward for The Von.
From here, with the feedback received from the push to press and radio, we could diagnose what exactly needed improving to increase the receptivity of the famously hard-to-please music press. And this time, we went far beyond the expectations of The Von.
Here's what happened…
Building A Bespoke Strategy
The first thing we needed do was get to know the band behind the music. We needed to understand what makes them tick, their aspirations, who they are, who their ideal audience is, why they write the music they write, so we did what few promotion companies do, we met in person.
Flying in from Florida and invited to our London offices to meet the core Mastermind team, we could discuss these ideas at length and start to articulate The Vons core values which we could utilise in the branding to get the most authentic and streamlined brand for the Floridian alternative rock band.
With the branding strategy in tow, we sourced a favourite music photographer of ours to shoot The Von in way that would be natural to the branding strategy, thus keeping it authentic to The Von's values as an artist and what they want to express to their ideal audience.
It's not enough just to hire a photographer, we ensure the star treatment, so we used our professional studio and stylist for the band, giving them the confidence and comfort to be themselves and align with the big artist inside we knew was laying dormant.
Social Media Content Management
Before approaching any influencers through our trademarked promotion strategy, we needed to learn how to connect with The Von's audience. For The Von, we created a social media strategy for them to learn how to connect with new fans and maintain loyalty among current engagers.
Additionally to this we implemented a ten week social media advertising campaign across all of The Von's social media touch points, all cleared and approved by the band.
Continuing to build The Von's appearance as a reputable and professional music group, we moved on to updating and creating the visual assets of the brand; creating a new logo, single artwork for the release (above), backgrounds for website media, and designs for social media communication, all stemming from the original brand strategy we crafted together as a team.
For this we had two graphic designers, a number of promotion officers, branding advisors, and the band themselves overlooking the entire operation. Branding is a delicate operation, much of it requiring the input of the artist so we can get to the most authentic yet the best representation of themselves through the brand.
Profile Avatar (Dark)
Profile Avatar (Light)
Consistency is the name of the game in branding, and through our branding system we focused our branding around The Von's single, 'Just Three Words'. We sought to have every brand touch point a representation of their launch single.
Bespoke Website Art
Everything for The Von was bespoke. We arranged to have everything on the website built from the ground up and according to the branding strategy laid out; encapsulating nature, connection, shamanism, psychedelia, and powerful cosmic mystery…
Next, was to put all these assets together to lead a bespoke website rebuild. Everything down to how the website functions as a reflection to the brand was considered and guided by our strategy. The results were a superb reflection of the band's personality.
Professionally Remastering for the Release
If the music is below a certain mixing standard, it won't gel well with the other music on the radio's playlists or the websites content. We sourced a good a friend of Mastermind, Dale Penner, to remaster The Von's single, 'Just Three Words'.
Dale Penner is a seasoned producer of rock and pop; helping bands such as Nickelback get to the standard of playability that they are now known for. We planned this with The Von so we can confidently get the music up to a competitive standard once we start promoting to radio and press. (Spoiler: It worked)
Myself and Dale Penner at 2018's Springboard Houston Music Conference.
Producing the Music Video
Music has become an increasing visual phenomenon. From the advent of MTV, music videos have become commonplace among musicians wishing to reach a larger audience.
Today, with worldwide accessibility to video media through services such as YouTube, the music video has not only become a vital tool to reach more of an audience, but also allows an audience (including the music press) to discern between a newly started musician with no music video, and a well situated musician with an available music video. Simply having a music video today puts an artist above the competition and brands them as an artist with a following.
For The Von, they already had a music video when they came to us but it was made without an idea of who they were or who they were talking to – before they had a solid brand to express.
We arranged to shoot a new music video for the single on a very tight budget, allowing our branding strategy to direct the decisions of the video. The outcome was spectacular compared to their previous video – and now everything was coming together perfectly for The Von's brand.
Promoting The Von Where It Matters Most
Promoting The Von, we needed to get the band in front of tastemakers who could validate their talent for the world…
We arranged for the band to perform a worldwide music industry event held in Houston where Emmy Award-Winning songwriter, Michele Vice-Maslin, Jonas Brothers Manager, Paul Kevin Jonas, Emmy Nominated Songwriter, Barry Coffing, were keynote speakers among many others (including myself), and additionally in London getting The Von an extremely rare and intimate acoustic performance exclusively for Guns 'n' Roses founding manager, Vicky Hamilton — a perfect match for The Von.
Next, in preparation to promoting The Von's European tour, we filmed an interview with the band ourselves to post on their own social media to give The Von's brand that all-important human touch.
Through this, anyone encountering the band online after hearing them can be introduced to the trio as relatable people, making their brand authentic, three-dimensional, and trust-worthy.
Additionally, we produced a live performance of the band as promotional footage. This, again, makes the brand more approachable and 'real'. Anyone discovering the band online through radio play, Spotify, word of mouth, etc, can then discover good live footage of The Von, cementing them as a live band, something important to The Von's reputation and brand.
It additionally works as a double-edged sword, promoting the band to venues, booking agencies, and tour promoters, interested in taking on The Von for their venues relationships or as a supporting artist in the future to come.
Invariably, all this work paid off…
Being played on BBC Radio up and down the country and as an added extra, getting The Von booked to play summer festivals in England, effectively adding an extra dates to their European tour, and playing in front of huge summer crowds. Their summer in Europe was as memorable for myself as much as it was for them.
Having now been featured on BBC Playlists, toured Europe and having built a brand that lives and breaths everything this trio are proud to stand for, we can say without doubt that The Von have established the foundations to flourish in this competitive industry. All they need to do now is keep creating, keep moving, and keep together!
We're looking forward to their next release and the exciting future for The Von as they start to become a known name in the alternative rock world. We can't wait.