Dos and Don’ts For Approaching the Publisher

This guide is a collection of experiences collected and sorted from many composers. It is made for novice or aspiring composers who want to get their music out in trailer & production music world. I am not saying that any of this is absolute way to do anything but all of these things helped me a lot so I’m hoping they’ll do the same for you. Enjoy!


1. Publisher research

Look around their catalog, ask around, see if your music fits their needs or their general vibe. You can learn A LOT by simply networking. Use social media channels. Most of the publishers are nice down-to-earth dudes and ladies who are hanging around with other musicians and composers in FB groups.  Various publishers are working with various agencies and studios. Some of them will one kind of need while others will do something completely different. Weight you options, find your strong suit and offer your music to publisher who is dealing in that kind of music and has right channels to push and distribute it.

2. Keep it simple and to the point

Just like everyone nowadays, publishers and music supervisors are extremely busy people. Professional music pitching and distribution work is a ruthless jungle where you have to act super fast in order to secure best placements. I know the dream of every composer is just to compose music and make living doing it but in order to be a part of the system you gotta understand how system works. That being said keep your emails and introductions short and to the point!

Here’s a nice example of an email I want to send to an imaginary publisher named John Smith because I want to become a part of his label called “Big Hit Trailers“.

Greetings John,

My name is Marko Tica.
I’m a music composer/sound designer from BIH, Europe.

I specialize in hybrid and sound design trailers and advertising.
These are mostly sound design tracks with sounds I made myself so you can scope my production range.

You can hear some of my newer stuff here:
INSER STREAMING LINK TO YOUR BEST 3 TRACKS (Google Drive, Reelcrafter, Disco, whatever)

I also got access to a small home studio and I can play several instruments so I record a lot of my stuff live. 
Love doing my own sound design so pretty much all percussive sound design you hear in my tracks is made from scratch.

Thanks in advance for taking the time to listen to my reel.

Kind regards
Marko Tica


Here’s also my short Biography and some social media links with even more info about me:

Marko Tica – Biography text.



3. Use your best, recent work

When sending emails I always recommend using Google Drive or Reelcrafter (use IBE7200 referral code to get 30 days free) or similar for storing music. Something that you can easily update without changing the link itself. Musicians and composers progress EACH day they work so it’s always best to have your latest and best work in that folder.


4. Be patient and keep track!
Here you will see the benefit of keeping the reel folder updated. Sometimes publishers will not answer right away (I had pubs contact me after more than a year after the date I sent my reel!), sure it can mean they are not interested, which is true in most case but it’s important to keep track. I got my best contract simply by being patient. If publisher denies you, write down the date it happened. Update your reel folder regularly and after 2-3 months, try again. Maybe that new batch of music will work better for them. Use the similar method if publisher says they are not accepting new composers at the moment. Write it down. Follow up after a few months with new reel.
Music market is fluid both composers and publishers come and go. Mark my words, after some time you will be drowning in work and track request so you will have to choose which publisher is best for you, narrow it down and stick to it.

5. Repeat
Now you got your dream publisher list, you got you reel, you got the way to keep track of your email sending. Good. All you have to do now is repeat everything that is written in points 1-4.
1. Never give up hope and don’t despair over being rejected. I got rejected exactly 64 times before I got my first contract.
2. Give the publisher time to breathe (or better forget you) after you receive rejection. You don’t want to be remembered as that sucky composer who kept bothering and pushing. By doing this you are also giving yourself time to grow and improve your craft. For me it turned out that good cool down period is 3 months.


1. Don’t bulk email

Try to avoid bulk emailing publishers or bulk emailing everyone in the company. Like I said above, research, find out who is person responsible for handling new composer signings – address that person individually, by name.
Put your self in their shoes: would you start a business cooperation with a person who doesn’t even bother to address you properly. No, you’d probably hit spam button.


2. Don’t send gazillion tracks

Use you best 2-3 tracks in genre that you are BEST in composing. One of common mistakes is people sending 10+ tracks wanting to showcase everything they can do all at once. Statistically attention listening span of average music sup or pub when they are checking out music is max 8-10sec. Nowadays stats say that even went down to 3-5sec so you can imagine why I am pushing so hard for you to use you absolute BEST work.

No worries, you skill will come to light once you start working for a publisher. You will be able to apply to many many briefs and showcase your talents in full.


3. Don’t be a stalker


And I can’t stress this enough! Yes, internet is an awesome thing, social media too. Ye, you can get access to almost anyone using all that but no, don’t stalk publishers and other music folk on Facebook. And by stalk I mean, reply to their every post, send tons of DMs, intrude in their personal life, etc. If you friend request is accepted, like all people, publishers do that in good will. Everyone likes to meet new people of similar interests but let that relationship develop at natural pace. Be honest, nice, truthful and overall cool being to hang around with. In the end nice and healthy friendship is a beautiful thing, it’s certainly more valuable than any business deal out there.


Work hard. Work meticulously. Be kind. Be patient – And good things will come your way.

I can guarantee this 100%. I will always point out this: if I could do it against impossible odds, you can do it too. Just follow this simple guide and you’ll do just fine. If you need more advice, hit me up on FB or via contact section here and I’ll do my best to help out however I can.

Happy composing

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