I was just searching on Google, and found a ton of online mixing and mastering services and was a little shocked by how bad or unprofessional most of them were.
And I’m not just saying that because I run a mixing and mastering company (okay maybe I am, a little).
But I do feel I should give you some pointers on what to look out for when considering a mixing and mastering service and hiring an online audio engineer.
In no particular order, these are a few things that would draw a red flag for me.
1) Do they have a unique name?
If their domain name is something like “onlinemixingandmasteringservice.com” that would be a huge warning sign to me.
This is because it shows they are not interested in building a trust worthy brand.
Because the name of your toothpaste isn’t toothpaste is it?
Meaning they are trying to game Google, using out of date techniques that Google will eventually find out about.
For you the consumer, who probably doesn’t care about that stuff, think of it like this: where would you rather buy something from?
A website called shoppingmall.com or Amazon? One is generic and one is a trustworthy brand that was built over many years.
2) Do they have a Facebook page?
Sure you can fool Google, so they rank your site higher but they’ll eventually find out about your dirty marketing tactics but it’s harder to fake a social media following.
You can’t trick people into engaging with your content. Sure you can buy Likes, but as an artist that’s probably trying to build your own following, you should have the chops to tell if a Facebook page has real engagement or not.
For example, if a company has no social media presence that’s a serious red flag to me. Because it shows they don’t want to be held accountable.
Also don’t be fooled by mixing and mastering companies that have too many Likes, as they are quite likely Fake Likes.
Usually small companies are not going to have more than 5000 Likes.
For example, our Facebook page has just over 1000 Likes and we’ve been around for four years. Though admittedly we only made Facebook and Instagram a priority within the less few months.
Aside from hiw many Likes they have, you should look at their feed to see if a real human runs their accounts and is interacting with their audience.
3) Do they have reviews?
You can do this by searching for their “company name + reviews” on either Google, Facebook and Twitter. This is also another reason why they choose a generic name, because it makes searching for their past history much more difficult.
Are they a scam?
I recently came across this “hip hop producer” who brags about how much he makes in his online business. When I started to Google search his name the auto suggest added on “scam”. Turns out his conpany has a history of scamming artists!
So a good idea is to Google the “company’s name + scam” or the “company’s name + ripoff”.
You can also see if they’re listed on sites such as ripoffreport.com or yelp.com, where customers usually go to complain about experiences with online companies.
I know a lot of what I’m saying here doesn’t just apply to finding a mixing and mastering service and can be applied to online shopping in general but it’s still good to know right?
4) Do they have an active blog?
Anytime I come to a site I’ve never been to before, I check to see if they have a blog and I see when was it last updated.
If they don’t have a blog or one that hasn’t been updated in a while, it may mean they’re out of business or just don’t care to to communicate to their audience.
I do get that they may not have the time to blog, believe me, I wish I had more time to blog, or don’t know how to write, but that just shows me the commitment they have to their business.
I’m so busy mixing and mastering your music but I still manage to find the time to write because it better connects me to you.
So what if I can’t hang out with my friends for one evening or binge watch Netflix? I’m writing about what I love, mixing and mastering! Ha!
Blogging is not something you can fake easily, even though people try to game the system all the time. Today I even caught a few sites taking my articles, rewriting them a little and publishing them with no credit.
I know what wolves!
I totally understand the game and can’t knock the hustle but these moves are so shortsighted it’s not even funny.
If you’re reading this and are copying our content, you need to not only rethink your company’s strategy but also your life strategy. Shots!
5) Did they really work with Michael Jackson?
If their site has pictures of Drake and Kanye and they’re claiming they’ve mixed and mastered their songs, that’s a serious warning sign and quite possibly fraud.
If an online audio engineer is claiming they’ve mixed for anybody famous and are charging less than $500 per song, I would want to know which songs they’ve worked on.
Oh what a surprise they won’t say.
6) Did they really win a Grammy?
I’ve seen a number of audio engineers online claiming they are Grammy Award Winners. They also conveniently forget to mention for which artist and for what album.
As if we can’t easily figure out who the past Grammy winners are. I mean c’mon!
Hey guys I’ve 30 Grammys for audio engineering!
That’s more than Kanye! Who would believe that?
By looking out for things such as their brand name, social media engagement, an active blog, as well doing a reference check on their past clients (and Grammy claims) you can hopefully find a reputable business to partner with.
Because after all, you should look at your audio engineer as someone that’s apart of your team to help you achieve your goals in your music career.