Chris from MicControl – The Importance of the Blogosphere to Bands – Q&A INTERVIEW

Chris Taylor, the co-founder of, has done an interview with us about his company and how it got started. The interview can be read after the break.

Chris Taylor, the co-founder of, has done an interview with us about his company and how it got started. The interview can be read after the break.

Are you in a band or are you a part of the music industry? Do you keep up with blogs that focus on the music industry? If you do, then you probably have heard of MicControl. This blog is a great source of finding new music and keeping up with what is happening in the music industry. If you haven’t, then you are missing out. Check out the interview we did with Chris Taylor who co-founded the site about the importance of blogs to touring musicians!

Digital Tour Bus: Can you please state you name, company name, and position?
MicControl: I’m Chris Taylor and I’m the co-founder of!

DTB: Can you describe what MicControl is for our readers?
MC: MicControl is a blogging community that revolves around the emerging music industry. Bloggers, artists, fans and even industry members can create a profile on our site which includes their own blog. We have two main distinctions between blog posts on our site. The first being MicSchool which focuses more on the marketing side of music, offering artists advice, trends to follow, and ways to advance their career. The second is MicBlogs which focuses on the music discovery side of things, promoting the next best up and coming artists, interviews, reviews, and industry news.

On top of our community we’ve begun to do blog/social media consulting for the music industry using our experience to help artists and companies to build their brand online and target potential fans and customers. Everything we know about social media and blogging is based on experience – we started using social media when we initially came up with the idea for MicControl and since have done a lot of research, tested what does and doesn’t work, offered advice to artists and companies, and now we’re working with artists and companies personally to create unique strategies to target new fans and customers.

Overall the MicControl brand is based on helping the emerging music community use the internet to promote themselves, build their brand using the power of the internet, and create a sustainable career doing what they love. What could be better than that?

DTB:  How did you get started with the site? Did you initially think you would still be doing it after this much time?
MC: Myself and Jon Ostrow, the other co-founder of MicControl, have always been passionate about music and wanted to start some kind of community that could help promote emerging artists in a way where they weren’t overshadowed by a bunch of mainstream artists (the way MySpace was a few years ago).

We initially came up with the idea in early 2009 and as our site was being developed we dove head first into the blogging/social media side of things and it slightly shifted our focus when we realized just how important blogs were to the music industry. We also noticed there really was no community for music bloggers to share ideas, network, and build their brand and there wasn’t an easy way for artists to connect with bloggers that covered their specific genre. That was the real turning point for MicControl.

Did I think I’d still be doing this two years later? Yeah, but maybe that was wishful thinking mixed with a little naivety haha.

DTB: When you first started the site, what were your expectations?
MC: Business lunches with Zuckerberg, traveling with sold out world tours, the usual haha. But in all seriousness, I’m not sure we really knew what to expect. Both Jon and I were on the verge of graduating college when we got started and I think we were just hopeful that we could one day work on MicControl full-time and do something we were passionate about. We had high aspirations, worked really hard, and didn’t give up. Now we’re fortunate enough to be able to work on MicControl full-time.

DTB: With the growing importance of the internet, how important are blogs to bands?
MC: I can’t put into words the importance of blogs to bands. It’s imperative for bands to be involved in the blogosphere. I think bands should have their own blogs but at the very least they should be doing everything they can to get featured on blogs, build relationships with bloggers, and overall just be involved with the scene.

If you’re targeting the right blogs within your genre you can significantly increase your fan base and even gain attention from A&Rs. A&Rs are turning to blogs these days to see who should be signed next. Blogs hold a lot of power as “tastemakers” and I’ve seen many artists who can credit their success to blogs.

DTB: Do you think the importance of blogs will continue to grow in the future?
MC: Absolutely. Blogs will continue to play the A&R role for record labels and I think it will be difficult to get any kind of recognition in the industry without blog presence as time goes on. I’ve already seen bloggers begin to expand their business model to include live events, sponsorships, and even bloggers representing artists. I think this will become more common as time goes on so a good relationship with bloggers can open a lot of doors for artists.

DTB: How can blogs help bands get more people out to their shows on the road?
MC: Whenever we talk to artists about getting featured on blogs we stress the importance of targeting blogs on a local, regional, and national basis. Before you go on tour you should be reaching out to bloggers who have a strong presence in the cities you’ll be performing in. It’s also important to get in touch with the bloggers that have a national reach because if they post your tour dates readers from all over the country can know when you’ll be in town. I also recommend inviting bloggers to your show – hook them up with a backstage pass and show them a good time at your show. If you leave a lasting impression on them I guarantee the next time you’re coming to town they will talk you up to their readers and help to draw an even bigger crowd.

DTB: Should bands seek out local blogs to do press with on tour? If so, how would you suggest they go about doing that?
MC: Definitely! Building strong relationships with bloggers is incredibly important and one of the best ways to do that is to invite them to a show and meet them face to face. I’ve done interviews with artists backstage before a show and a lot of times it has turned me from a casual listener into a diehard supporter. Remember, most bloggers are music fans at heart, so what better way to win them over than by giving them the VIP treatment and letting them hang out with you while getting some press as well?

As I mentioned before, artists should seek blogs that have local, regional and national reach (a quick Google Blog search can usually help you find blogs that cover your genre in particular cities). Once you find a few blogs, simply reach out to them – shoot them an email (contact them a few weeks in advance) and give them the details (tell them why it will benefit them) and hook them up. Have them come by the venue at soundcheck, hang out with them, let them get to know you and get some press out of it, whether it’s an interview, live review, etc. It will probably be easiest to start with smaller blogs if you’re still new to the blogging world but it never hurts to reach out to bigger blogs. Just remember, bloggers will be relaying their experience to their readers – make sure it’s a memorable experience!

DTB: How can bands use their own blogs to promote themselves and their concerts?
MC: I’ve read a lot of artist’s blogs that are boring and rarely updated. They only update fans when they’ve got something new that they need their fans to buy. Instead, use your blog as a way for fans to follow your journey, give them the behind the scenes details. Post pictures from your week long studio session, post video blogs while on the road, some exclusive samples of your new song, you get the idea. Don’t be afraid to get creative! Artists need to step back into the shoes of the fans – what would you have liked to see from your favorite band when you were just a fan? What would have gotten you excited to read their blog? Adding in those little extras for the fans will make them become more active fans so that when you DO post your tour dates or your latest single, they’re going to reach for their wallets because they saw those awesome live videos you posted from the last tour.

DTB: Do you have any promotion advice for how bands can promote their tour dates? Either on or offline.
MC: The keyword in “social media” is “social.” Integrate and encourage sharing when you post your tour dates online. People who may not normally attend a show may be interested because their best friend just bought tickets. Check out sites like where fans are rewarded for getting their friends to come to a show. When you’re touring (especially in areas where you may not have a huge fan base) it’s really important to reach out to your fans and have them help you spread the word.

DTB: What can we expect to see from MicControl in the future? Anything exciting coming up?
MC: We’ve got a lot that we’re working on at MicControl, all which will be revealed in due time! One thing we can let you in on though, is that we’ll be hosting a webinar focused on educating artists on how to get their music on blogs. It will cost $10 to join the interactive presentation, which will be packed with info and strategies on how to reach out to bloggers and get your music featured as well as a chance to win some free consulting from MicControl. In the future we plan on hosting more webinars based on a variety of topics.

DTB: Do you have comment or thoughts to add?
MC: I’d like to add a quick shout out to Digital TourBus and Josh for the interview! For more info on MicControl connect with us on Facebook ( and Twitter – @MicControl (for my personal account @MicControlChris).

Also, check out the webinar we’re hosting a webinar for musicians covering all the ins and outs of getting your music on blogs at … ouncement/!