A well timed and strategically executed music release can make all the difference to your media coverage, airtime and audience reach. Kitty Kitty Bang Bang’s Kylie Cobb says taking into account what else is happening when you release to minimise competition for media space and capitalise on key events that have themes in common with your music can significantly improve your cut-through and impact. If you have a song that relates to reconciliation for example, far better to plan for a May release to time with National Reconciliation Week rather than April when you’ll be competing with the Commonwealth Games. Here, Kylie gives Blank GC readers her bangin’ month-by-month guide for releasing new music in 2018.
Like most of us, Australia’s media are still caught up in the Christmas food and booze bubble until mid-January when we rear our beautiful heads for one last “best of 2017” reminiscence, epitomised by Triple J’s Hot 100. Unless you have an especially relevant track or you’re a lucky red-head (see below) I would avoid a January release.
Kiss A Ginger Day • Australia Day • Triple J Hot 100 • Veganuary
Feb is the perfect time to hit out with those fresh summer beats. We’re all hot, sweaty and excited for a bangin’ year of new tunes! This is a great time for upbeat anthems and those with messages of optimism, love, solidarity and hope.
Valentine’s Day • Mardi Gras • Feel Good February • FebruDAREy • Apology Anniversary • World Radio Day • Chinese New Year
Early March is going to be your best bet for a new release before the media gets too noisy with Easter, Bluesfest and the Commonwealth Games clogging up the region’s media pipeline. Music around gender equality can be powerful as the conversation comes to the fore this month.
International Women’s Day • Easter • UN Solidarity Week • Quicksilver/Roxy Surfing Pro • Clean Up Aus Day
I’m officially declaring April 2018 a NO-GO zone for new music releases in South East Queensland! With the Commonwealth Games in full swing, Bleach* and Festival 2018 amongst it, you will be hard-pressed getting heard above the noise.
National Youth Week • World Heritage Day • Earth Day • ANZAC Day • International Jazz Day
Another action-packed month on the local music calendar with Gold Coast Music Awards, Surfers Paradise LIVE and Groundwater (Blues on Broadbeach) festivals all happening, but I wouldn’t let these stop you from releasing a song at this time. With National Sorry Day, Mothers’ Day and winter approaching, it’s a great time to release tracks that make us want to snuggle up under the doona or inspire us to take a stand on important social issues.
National Reconciliation Week • Domestic and Family Violence Prevention Month • White Wreath Day • Australia’s Biggest Morning Tea • Star Wars Day :)-
A good time to release with a big meaty tour attached. Not much happening on the event scene, which means less competition for media attention. The northern states are perfect for music that brings outdoor fun-in-the-winter-sun vibes, while winter warmers are the go for the southern states that promise intimacy, cosiness or sweating it out in a heaving moshpit. You get the idea! Some strong, meaningful awareness days this month too.
National Reconciliation Week • Mabo Day • World Environment Day • International Men’s Health Week • Refugee Week
JULY AND AUGUST
July and August are my TOP months to release new music. It’s the stunning Queensland winter, Spring’s within reach and NAIDOC Week, Dry July and National Pyjama Day give us two months of opportunities to power-up your media newsworth-iness, with few major events to compete with. Strategically, it can be a golden time to raise your industry profile ahead of BIGSOUND and Australian Music Week, as well as placing you smack-bang in the middle of the year for building buzz and momentum for award/charting season. GO FOR GOLD BABY!
NAIDOC Week • Homelessness Prevention Week • International Youth Day • World Humanitarian Day • Keep Australia Beautiful Week • Elvis Week (!) • EKKA
Spring has sprung and so has festival season! If you are playing one of them, now could be a good time to release new music for that extra angle to make you stand out in the music media tangle. Same goes for BIGSOUND, which takes the main stage early in the month. If you’re not in the line-up, consider waiting till the end of the month to release.
Liptember • Blue September • Fathers’ Day • Talk like a Pirate day • World Suicide Prevention Day • International Day of Peace • Brisbane Pride Festival
October is the perfect time for your new summer release! There are very few major community or industry events dominating the calendar and you have time to include a juicy tour before the Christmas madness kicks in. There are also more than 40 awareness events, which can give additional media opps if your release is related.
Mental Health Week • Halloween • Headspace Day • World Homeless Day • Buy Nothing New Month • Ocsober
Girls’ Night In • World Animal Day • World Smile Day • Sock it to Suicide Week • International Coffee Day
NOVEMBER & DECEMBER
Unless you have a very strategic reason for doing so, I recommend avoiding releases after mid November. The media world starts to scale back and from mid-December to mid-January many radio stations (especially syndicated ones) are replaying segments from the year with limited live-to-air broadcasts, publications are relying on skeleton crews and the mainstream media is taken over by the “feel good” Christmas pre-season. For music media the ‘best of’ listicles emerge, with the community reflecting on the year that has been. This generally means less coverage opportunities for your new music.
Same-Sex Marriage Amendment anniversary • Movember • Remembrance Day • Schoolies Week • White Ribbon Day • Orange Day • Christmas • New Year
You’ve spent so much time, money and energy on creating your music, I strongly urge you to invest time in researching the best time to release it. This is by no means a definitive list of goings on, but is a great starting point. Identifying synergies between your music and what’s happening in the community can seriously power-up the impact of your new release. Send it out to the world a month too early, and your music could be falling on deaf ears. But, release on a day, a week or month where you can genuinely add to the greater conversation and there is less ‘news’ to compete with and the media will grab onto it seeing you reach a much bigger audience.
IMAGE (c) David Vagg