“You’re a hit.” That’s what every musician loves to hear. And that’s why music promotion is all the rave these days.
If you’re a musician, then you know there’s nothing sweeter than a bevy of fans screaming your name as you walk on stage to deliver an electrifying performance.
But even before you’re nicknamed the ‘hottest act in the industry’, or have your name tattooed over the chest of some dazed fanatic (boy, wouldn’t we all want that), you must amass a following.
Let’s face it; music promotion ain’t no walk in the park. It requires a lot of dedication and commitment especially if you’re just starting out.
There’s no full-proof memo out here on how to advertise yourself in this competitive, man-eat-man industry of acoustics.
Did anyone ever tell you that you’ve got to research long-tail keywords for your music blog?
Nope: It’s the basics. Something you picked up as you expounded your knowledge of the business.
Heck, maybe you didn’t even think you need a music blog in the first place.
But as one loquacious sage quipped; if the shoe fits, then wear it.
Making smart moves with your Spotify music promotion is fundamental for any artist looking to have a successful music career.
As such, we’ve taken the time to create a straightforward marketing guide to help you reach a bevy of your fans, regardless of genre or location.
So let’s begin!
1. Kill It With Your Music Videos
The writing’s on the wall; videos are the freshest avenue in the market. Even Spotify is now starting to make its own video content for their platform!
Some may say it’s not the same since MTV moved away from the industry, but the truth is that the music video is far from dead.
A video is a great way to get people to understand the project musically – in just a couple of minutes.
From an industry point of view, it also shows the potential ‘buyer’ how effectively they could communicate your music with fans. It gives them a full overview not only of your music, but also your performing presence and style.
And the best part? You don’t need an inflated budget to make a music video. Here you can see how Indy Mogul shoots a no-budget, minimal gear music video in 4 hours!
So if you’re able to create a music video that’s unparalleled, you’ll definitely find yourself trending.
Also, make sure to get more authority for your videos. Social engagement is a must in nowadays music industry!
2. Social Media Much?
The average individual in the West spends roughly an hour a day consuming social media content and its affiliates.
While having casual listeners might be important, musicians depend on die-hard fans. These are the guys who will buy any new merch your release, as well as sell-out your concerts when you’re out on tour!
Creating a community of fans is one of the most important parts of promoting your music, and social media is the perfect tool for it.
Let’s kick it off with the basics. Instagram is a great platform for keeping your fans in the know about your day-to-day life and your music.
It’s not only awesome for posting your pictures and videos, but Instagram Stories gets you up close and personal with your fans.
When performing shows remember to invite the audience to tag you on their posts. You’ll get people to follow you and you’ll be able to repost the stories they publish.
Hopefully, you’ve got a strong following of 1000+ on your Instagram handle. If note, maybe we can give you a hand.
Facebook, on the other hand, is quintessential for organizing any upcoming events or concert tours.
In fact, millions of users access Facebook Events every day to discover, and attend, local gigs in their area.
And since August 2018, artists, in conjunction with their promoters, have been able to sell their concert tickets directly on Facebook.
3. Attract More People to Your Shows with Contests
Live Music, especially concerts, are all about memorabilia. Everyone wants to leave the concert with a definitive moment to which they can mark their youthful days.
Because every man dies…but few get to live.
So what makes your show all the more unforgettable? By hosting a contest, of course!
When posting an invite for your show on Facebook Event, give your fans a hint of the contest they might participate in.
You can make the reward anything from backstage passes, meet and greets, exclusive merch, or even a cash prize.
Hosting contests such as these can be an exciting, engaging, and immersive experience for your fans. And the more fun your shows are, the more sold-out concerts you will have!
It’s basic math…;)
4. Once in Awhile, Give Your Fans A Freebie
There’s nothing sweeter than seeing your music idol in the flesh; especially when it’s for free!
Okay, this might not be the ideal setup from a monetary perspective. But taking the time off your busy schedule to showcase your philanthropic nature is one sure way of repaying your ‘day-ones’.
Plus, in an era of music riddled with exorbitant fees, hosting a free show once in a while will definitely make you seem like a down-to-earth, poised artist who appreciates the fans.
5. Create Trending Hashtags For Your Music
Most people view hashtags in a negative light. It’s no denying that apart from trending on Twitter, hashtags are labeled as spammy.
Unbeknownst to many artists, however, is that hashtags can be used to create a super-fun, influential, online community for your music.
Your fans being your fans would definitely want to spread their eccentric love for your music to others, right?
With this in mind, you can create a new hashtag on Instagram for a single you’ve just released.
And rest assured your diehard fans will jump on the bandwagon immediately!
In fact, they’ll want to share it with all and sundry in an effort to give your brand more exposure.
You can also use hashtags to communicate collectively to your fans; even if it’s to send them a resounding appreciation for their support on your latest release.
In fact, there’s nothing more gratifying to fans than receiving an acknowledgment from a musician they hold so dear.
6. Don’t Underestimate Radio Play
Great radio will reverberate through time.
Perhaps you might be overly skeptical about this, but genuine music enthusiasts will always have time for their local radio stations.
So don’t be fooled; the radio isn’t dead…yet.
In fact, if you’re scheduled to be performing in a certain area, especially in the rural regions, why not get in touch with a local radio station to promote your music?
Ideally, you can liaise with the radio station’s staff to do a brief music promotion gig where you provide information about the concert such as the date and the venue; and even play a few tracks for them while on air.
Either way, it gives you the opportunity to create some buzz around your concert before the big day.
7. Team Up With Other Artists On Tour
What better way to amass a new wave of listeners than to play your awesome music to a whole new fanbase?
It’s become the norm these days for artists to go on tour together as an avenue for music promotion…especially if they’re in the same genre.
Ideally, it would be great if you could open for an artist who’s fanbase is bigger than yours. This not only exposes you to a larger crowd of potential consumers but also makes your music stand out.
8. Showcase Your Talent in Genre-Specific Festivals
To be extolled as a great artist, you need to have the flamboyance to perform at as many festivals as possible.
Otherwise, how else will fans see you as a suave artist?
Depending on your niche, there are many renowned festivals you can curtain raise for. While Coachella might not be so ideal f0r an indie rock band (let’s face it; most teens go to Coachella to get hammered and sluggishly bob their heads to Lil Pump), you can target festivals that focus on your genre.
By targeting niche-oriented festivals, your music reaches audiences that actually want to hear it.
9. Create Your Own Documentary
In 2019, fanaticism has thrived to unimaginable heights. Today, fans have become obsessed with virtually anything a celebrity touches.
It’s a classic case of the feudal system; where they view you as nobility and themselves as commoners. As eery as this sounds, it can be used as a great marketing gimmick!
Your fans would like to know a lot about you; down to the most subtle details. Something that you can use to capitalize on your Spotify artist promotion.
What cereal do you munch in the morning? What’s your favorite toothpaste brand? What Netflix shows do you binge?
In fact, you can use your blog to divulge this information on a regular…perhaps even let them in on your songwriting process.
Publishing such down-to-earth content implores the fans to like you more. Plus its a nifty music promotion strategy.
Besides, wouldn’t you want a closer relationship with an artist you look up to?
10. Get Feedback From Fans on Your Creative Process
We can’t stress how much your fans are the cornerstone of your music career. So incorporating their feedback in your songwriting and production process is surefire to heighten their interest in your content.
But you have to give them an incentive to participate.
Perhaps you can reward the first 100 downloaders of your newest single to work on the cover art of your upcoming album.
Maybe add them to your newsletter. Or the first 10 downloaders of your new single can play extras in your new music video!
Which then brings us to…
11. Contact music writers and critics For Music Promotion
Music critics, just like their counterparts in the food industry, exert a lot of influence over which artists make the cut and which don’t.
However, before contacting a music critic to review and promote your music, there’s a flip side to this.
In the event that they don’t resonate with your content, you’ve got to face the music with harsh criticism.
Alternatively, a great review (especially from an established critic) can do wonders for your music promotion!
Plus, if the critic is kind enough to link the review back to your blog, your Google search ranking will skyrocket.
12. Write Music Reviews As Well
Becoming a guest-post music writer in an established music publication such as XXL and Pitchfork is smart branding.
To be considered, you first need to create an author bio where you flex your wordplay. Such that when you’re not singlehandedly saving the jazz genre, you’re critiquing the latest music!
So how do you benefit from writing music reviews?
By music promotion. You want to direct the readers to your music blog and streaming profiles, of course!
It doesn’t matter if you’re labeled the harshest critic of the millennia. Remember there’s no such thing as ‘bad publicity.’
Just ask Simon Cowell.
13. Make it Easier For Your Music to Be Accessed On Your Website
Accessibility is key in the music industry. Regardless, of the streaming platforms you’ve profiled on (such as Spotify and Soundcloud), you’ve got to make it easy for visitors to access your music with one click.
By prominently featuring your newest songs on the homepage of your blog or streaming profiles, it’s easier to access your content.
14. Go Back to The Basics
The internet of things might have transformed how we access media, but there will always be music lovers passionate about vintage.
Cognizant of the fact that streaming sites are the dominant music platforms today, statistics have shown that annual sales of vinyls in the United States have proliferated 15 times in the past decade!
So it won’t cost you an arm or a leg to do some music promotion the old-school way. A few vinyl records couldn’t hurt…
Heck, you can even take some time off your busy schedule to promote your music in good ol’ record stores.
Maybe even ask them to play your latest tracks; or have a pronounced sticker or poster of some of your content on their walls.
15. Reveal Some Personal Info In Your Interviews
Ideally, we want to believe that people will listen to good music regardless of the persona behind the content.
But it doesn’t work that way, especially in music promotion.
As a society, we are intrigued by an artist with an obscure moral compass.
Let’s reiterate this; all publicity is good publicity.
So if you have some ambiguous personal stories, why not bring them to light in exclusive interviews?
Not only do they make you more relatable to fans, but also create a lot of hype about your music career. You can even tie some of your music to past events and themes in your life.
In the end, the music industry, just like every other industry out there, has its own set of rules to play by. But the golden rule is this:
Always take your time
Whether it’s with releasing your first single, or using these music promotion strategies to promote your music, never be in a rush.
Because fine art, just like fine wine, needs every nerve of patience to truly appreciate its beauty…