Monday, October 26, 2015

One recording is worth a thousand photos – use sound to promote your choir

Singing is all about sound, whether it’s a one-day workshop, a live concert or a CD.


I’m amazed at choir websites, concert promotion and singing workshop publicity which is full of photos, but have no sound clips. If you don’t have sound, you’re missing out.

We deal in sound. People come to hear our choirs, listen to our CDs and join in with the singing at a workshop. Surely the best way to let people know how good we are is to let them hear us? But it’s surprising how many choirs forget this!

I’ve come across countless choir websites which have long lists of their past concerts complete with extensive repertoire and programme notes, but no sound.

There are choir websites with endless galleries of choir photos: in rehearsal, on tour, in concert, but no sound clips.

Many workshop leaders I know post photos of their workshops on Twitter, but hardly ever accompanied by sound.

It’s easy to be impressed by slick publicity photos and clever design, but I’ve often been very disappointed when I’ve actually got to hear the singing.

It’s fairly simple to create recordings to showcase your choir or singing workshops. You don’t need fancy equipment to record singing. Even a recording on a smartphone is pretty good these days. And if you can video it at the same time, all the better. Find out more here: What’s the best recording device to use in a choir rehearsal or singing workshop?

Here are some ways in which you can use sound recordings to promotes your singing activities.

  • YouTube – this is a free platform for sharing videos, but you can also use still images. If you haven’t already done so, make sure you claim a unique URL for your YouTube channel (mine is Then just upload your sound files with accompanying images.
  • SoundCloud – this is a free platform for uploading and sharing MP3s. Like YouTube, make sure you bag a URL (before someone else nicks it!) – mine is You can then upload MP3s and add descriptions, tags, etc.
  • MP3s on website – depending on how much space your website host allows you, you can upload MP3s directly and store them with your other web pages. Then link to them on your website. These will open in a new window and play. See an example here: samples from Eastern European workshop
  • CD samples – use a service like CDBaby to sell your CD online (or Amazon or iTunes or ...). Whichever service you use, there is usually a facility for people to sample the tracks and hear your singing before they buy. You are selling your CD through your website aren’t you?
  • share the sounds – once you’ve uploaded sound recordings somewhere on the web, then make sure you share the links freely: on social media, on your website, in your email signature, in your publicity. You can also embed YouTube and SoundCloud on your website.
  • don’t forget print media – even when you’re producing print media (posters, fliers, letters, business cards, etc.) you can refer to recordings. For example, at the bottom of a concert poster it might say “Listen to us at”
So get some sounds out there now. Not only is it a good way of promoting your concerts and workshops, but it’s a fantastic recruitment tool.

Do let me know if you come across some good examples of people using recordings effectively.

Chris Rowbury



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Chris Rowbury


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