Every now and then, Wordsmith drops some knowledge on his musical hustle. Here’s his latest:

Welcome to 2009 ladies & gentlemen, so let me kick off the year with a spankin’ new Guerilla Marketing blog. I figured I would touch on a little street promo with numerous tactics that will increase your street presence.

In 2008, I released four HipHopdx.com sponsored Mixtapes that were only available via the web. Well, come March I will be servicing my Mixtapes to regular stores like DTLR (Downtown Locker Room), Record & Tape Traders, Gas stations and more. Notice, I mentioned the smaller chain stores over the bigger one’s and that is for a reason. Mom and pop stores are more willing to cut a deal or work with an artist because they are not dealing with major labels or manufacture’s most of the time. Though this will only be going down in the DC, MD, & VA on my end, I think it’s important to have some type of street presence; the trunk of the car isn’t working anymore. . To accomplish this I plan on providing the stores with everything from the CD Stands to the actual CD’s. An artist might go wrong by asking a store to help shelve something like a Mixtape, but I think a stronger relationship can be built by showing a store you can manufacture and keep a store stocked with your product. To do this, I would contact The Wondertwinz at http://www.wondertwinz.com/wtpr_gottadubit.htm and get 500 to 1,000 Mixtapes with covers at .65 cents a pop or you can get a laser CD printer from EPSON for $99, buy the slim jewel cases yourself from Office Depot, and purchase 5,000 covers at Clubflyers.com I would say hit The Wondertwinz up unless you can find a better company to beat there prices.

Moreover, appearance and professionalism are very important and that’s where the CD stands come into play. Sure, it’s easy to just lay your CD’s next to the register of a store, but think about how many times they will get moved by customers looking at them, store employees relocating them, or even worst trashing your project. By getting the CD stands to place your Mixtapes in, it keeps the register area clean for the stores that carry the project, it makes it easier for customers to look at the CD’s and place them back in there original location, and most of all it makes you look like a legit artist. Best part is you can cop 50 CD stands for $35 at http://www.displays2go.com/sub3.asp?ID=1379 I would throw in some promo cards to give to the store in case you run out of stock at some point as well; cop those at ClubFlyers for free at http://www.clubflyers.com/product_info.php?cPath=39&products_id=97

Finally, let’s talk about when you should or shouldn’t sell your Mixtapes. I will keep this cut and dry, if you have a following consider selling your Mixtapes from $5 to $10. If you’re just starting or a mid-level artist try selling your Mixtapes for a $1 or more importantly for free. Yeah, you will take somewhat of a hit money wise going the free route, but at least you will get the music in peoples hands. Selling them for a $1 can help you recoup some money as well if you stock 50 CD’s in at least 4 stores, you’ll make a least $200 back. All in all, see what is best for your current status in the industry and the streets.

The internet is still the best resource to gain exposure and touch more people at one time, but you still need to get the music to the people who don’t have internet access as well. The best way to do this is by matching your internet Mixtape releases with a hardcopy one also, so let’s all get to work, whooooo!!!