How to Market a Mixtape

Alex Abalos and Freddy Purches

The Recording Process

Sign up with "soundcloud", this website allows you to upload your own music through your own account. In this day in age it's really simple to produce your own music, even in home environments.

What you will need:
Recording device (mic, laptop, etc.)

The CD itself: cover art, casing for the CD, etc.

The cover art can be anything you want as long as it's created by you. With cover art now a days you see them being really simple and concise, but ultimately it's up to you. The music industry can be very straight forward if you're coming from the bottom. You don't deal with much, as long as all the content you produce is original. To make cover art there's multiple ways to go about it, the most simplest way would be to photoshop a few images of your choosing.

CD Release Promotion

Now that the content and cover art is done, you need actual listeners. The promotion of your CD can be shared instantly through various social media sites such as Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, etc. This is good for you because you won't have to spend money to promote your cd because you simply share the link out there. Once they obtain your link, they have your music. But say you want to make profit off of your music that you produce. Instead of making a "soundcloud" and sharing your work multiple different ways. The route of iTunes would be a lot more logical means of making a profit. If you go the route of iTunes, you would have to upload your music there and make it available through iTunes. Even if you go the route of iTunes, promotion would still be an easy task because you can still share the link out to your product similar to how you would using "soundcloud". Your audience wouldn't be able to freely listen to it until they purchase it.

The Issue of Free Downloading

The Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) reports that music sales in the United States have dropped 47 percent since Napster first debuted in 1999. The Motion Picture Association of America claims illegal streaming and downloading cost American workers 375,000 jobs and $16 billion in earnings every year. To recoup some of these losses, the music industry has filed lawsuits against individuals who have been found to have illegally downloaded music. In some cases, individuals have been sued for thousands, if not hundreds of thousands of dollars. The illegal sharing of music has impacted the way the music industry markets and promotes its artists. The introduction of Napster and illegal downloading helped usher in a new era of digitally accessible music where singles trump a full-length album. To expose its artists to a wider audience, the music industry has had to develop and deploy new tactics like ringtones and digital licensing music to sites like YouTube and Pandora. Touring and promotional deals are more lucrative for the music industry than selling songs. The Motion Picture Association of America claims illegal streaming and downloading cost American workers 375,000 jobs and $16 billion in earnings every year.

Government Copyright Laws

The government and the media industry say U.S. copyright law (specifically, 18 USC 2319), states that distributing content without permission from the copyright holder is a crime – copyright infringement. The crackdown – dubbed “Operation In Our Sites" – is being spearheaded by the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency’s (ICE) National Intellectual Property Rights Coordination Center, working in coordination with U.S. attorneys' offices across the country. The initiative has so far seized the domain names of 125 websites since it began last year, ICE says, effectively shutting them down.


Cover Art: an artwork as illustration or photograph on the outside of a published product such as a book (often on a dust jacket), album cover, magazine, comic book, video game (box art), DVD, CD, videotape, or music album.

Napster: a controversial application that allows people to share music over the Internet without having to purchase their own copy on CD

Piracy: the unauthorized use or reproduction of another's work

Mixtape: a compilation of favorite pieces of music, typically by different artists, recorded onto a cassette tape or other medium by an individual.

Copyright: the exclusive legal right, given to an originator or an assignee to print, publish, perform, film, or record literary, artistic, or musical material, and to authorize others to do the same

Autotune: a device or facility for tuning something automatically, especially a piece of computer software that enables the correction of an out-of-tune vocal performance.

Studio: a facility for sound recording and mixing.

Hype Man: a backup rapper and/or singer who supports the primary rappers with exclamations and interjections, and who attempts to increase the audience's excitement with call-and-response chants.

Limewire: LimeWire was a peer-to-peer file-sharing program used to share and distribute content on the Web.

Promotion: activity that supports or provides active encouragement for the furtherance of a cause, venture, or aim.