Sunday, February 20, 2011

Moja, Marketing and Me (Japan's Best New Rock Band is Moja)

OK. A short (but hopefully interesting) blog for your Sunday pleasure. It's mainly about a Japanese rock band named Moja but it is also about getting out and marketing yourself in the real world to real people. 

First up, let's talk about the band, Moja.

Here is Japan's best new rock band. Their name is Moja. They are a drum and bass duo with a guy named Haruhiko and a goddess on drums named Masumi. This duet is so hot that they've been invited to play at SXSW in March 2011. That's huge!

What is SXSW? Wikipedia describes:

SXSW Music is one of the largest music festivals in the United States, with more than 2,000 performers playing in more than 90 venues around downtown Austin over four days, in March. Though it is an industry-based event, SXSW Music links locally with events such as the annual Austin Music Awards show and Texas Rock Fest. SXSW Music also offers free musical samples of featured artists at each festival. 

When people ask, "Who do they sound like?" I can't answer that question. It's hard to describe Moja's sound. They don't sound like anyone else. It's incredible that just two people, with just a drum and bass, can make such a massive wall of sound.

If you like loud rock music, then click on the video. If not, then don't! This blog will continue below with an explanation of what this has to do with you and with marketing. 

Since this band is rising like a rocket, I knew that I had to take this chance to make their promotion video. Both Ken Nishikawa and I took two days (one was all night) in Feb. 2011 to shoot this video and then we edited it for about 10 hours on a Saturday night. It was a fun but extremely tiring process.  

Making a video like this should cost at least ¥500,000 for the entire package. How much did Ken and I get paid to make this video? Nothing. Zero. We did it for free. It was a labor of love... 

Actually we lost money as we bought food and drinks for ourselves during the shooting and editing days as well as train fare.

So, if we lose money doing this, why do it? 

Because I've mentioned many times before, that to be successful on the Internet, you have to have great content and you have to give things away for free. When you give things away for free, you are addressing the wants and needs of the readers and people who come to your site - and not being self-centric by always thinking of your own wants and needs. When you give things away for free, people will come. Perhaps, after addressing these needs of your visitors, then they can enter into your sales cycle then become a money maker for you thereby addressing your needs. 

You also have to be an expert in some field. I consider myself an expert in independent music. I've been in it for over 30 years.

I am starting an Internet business that is very much concerned with the music business. And since I have already been in the music business since 1978 and know that, in the music  business, credibility is hard to get, it is even harder to buy.

By supporting independent artists and the independent music scene and creating these sorts of high-quality music videos for those artists,  we make a statement; we are here and we are here to help you - not take advantage of you. 

This gives me massive credibility - much more than a, say, mere promoter who wants to hold shows and make money. I am giving the artist something they really want, and can use for years and asking for nothing in return.

One of the problems with Internet people is that they have no experience in the real world. They have sat behind their computers for so long that they don't know that face to face human interaction is still the trump card - especially in a business like the music business. Look at how the CEO of Groupon screws up his business by not being understanding of real people's feelings and local customs.

He definitely needs to get out more into the real world. 

Here is an ancient Chinese saying: "It is the wise business man who bows his head lowest for he shall understand his customers and become wealthy." OK, well, it's not so ancient and it's not so Chinese; I just made it up. But it's true.

Now, with a video like the above, I show people that I am here to help and be a part of the scene and I am real. This video is great promotion for the band but it is also great promotion for me too. We made this video last night. This morning I just did a Google search for "Moja Japanese band" and there the video is on the first page of results and, along with it, my name appears! Mission Accomplished!

If you are blogging or doing Social Media or other Internet services, is there anyway that you can become more connected with the real world by getting out and doing things with real people; thereby driving others to your web site and promoting your name? 

Think about it.

Here's another article on Moja

Moja on Myspace


Geoff said...

Interesting post regarding Moja. It's great to see them playing SXSW this year. They are not part of SXSW Japan Nite.....which is probably for the best since it's a bit of a scam.

They played in Toronto a couple of years ago, hopefully they come back again. Otherwise, I'll check them out next time I am in Japan

Check out this interesting blog this website called Next Music From Tokyo!

Steve Tanaka brings over indie bands from Japan to help give them more exposure to Canadian audiences. There were two tours last year and another tentatively scheduled for this October. Steve pays for the bands to come over and loses about $30 000 each tour. He was actually at Moja concert in Sendai the other night but just missed them.

The Japanese indie scene is one of the best music scenes in the world right now. Which is interesting because most of the corporate, mainstream crap that is produced in Japan is the most awful music ever made.

Anonymous said...

this is why you stated that japan is not in a sad state musically on another post Mike? if so, greed fully! Exactly what Japan needs more of. It resonates a truth with this city. I feel ill when they cute it up or copy the west ( 12 years behind beatmakers). This is good!

Geoff said;

"The Japanese indie scene is one of the best music scenes in the world right now. Which is interesting because most of the corporate, mainstream crap that is produced in Japan is the most awful music ever made."

i could not agree more!
Berlin and Toronto are really great currently too.

mike in tokyo rogers said...

Dear Anonymous.
Thanks. Yes. I should be more careful. You are right. Japanese mainstream s absolute crap. It is what America pop aspires to be: total and absolute shit shoved down the throats of the public who doesn't know any better. But! The underground scene is - and has been - pretty great!

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