One of the biggest mistakes I see rising songwriters make is pitching songs improperly. So, I wanted to give you some guidelines to help YOU pitch songs wisely and to not be that guy/girl that burns bridges by pitching the wrong way. Here are some things to consider when pitching.
Follow instructions carefully.
If they said “Don’t pitch any beach songs”, you are better off NOT pitching one, even if you think yours is great. Pay close attention to what they have already and DON’T pitch that.
Don’t pitch the most obvious songs.
For instance, if the artists are brothers, don’t pitch them songs about being brothers. Probably half of the people that write with them try to write a song about them being brothers. They have that covered, trust me. You need to think outside the box and pitch them something everyone else is NOT pitching them.
Don’t ask to send “Just one more” if you were told you could send one.
If they want to hear more, they will ask you. That’s better than you asking them.
Don’t check in.
If you don’t hear back, that means “no”. Don’t e-mail and say “Hey what did you think about my song?” They will contact you with ANY good news. I promise. The people you are pitching to usually have more songs than they can possibly listen to. They don’t have time to respond to every single person. That’s nothing personal, it’s just reality.
Don’t pitch anything if you don’t have something you think fits perfectly.
It’s better not to waste their time. So, don’t send anything at all if you don’t have anything that you believe is a PERFECT fit. Just have patience and wait until you have something you’d bet the farm on. Then, send that one song. You’ll get the door closed in your face if you continue to send things that don’t work for the artist. Treat each pitching relationship as precious and worth getting “just right” before you send something off.
Finally, don’t pitch a weak song.
The only weak songs that get cut are ones the artist writes themselves or that someone in the camp has a financial interest in. Outside writers only get GREAT songs cut.
It’s always better to pitch nothing than to pitch the wrong thing, so do your homework. Find out what the artist needs and try to target that need very creatively and specifically. Best of luck!
Write on! ~MD
Marty Dodson is a multi #1 songwriter, publisher, and co-founder of SongTown USA