Music Marketing

Can Internet Marketing Techniques Sell Music?

This is a guest post by Seamus Anthony, a Melbourne-based musician. 

image from While music is my first love, I actually currently make more money as a website geek and, to a lesser extent, a writer. So I know how Internet marketing “squeeze pages” work, and how to write and build them.

Meanwhile, I have been going on my merry way making music but not exactly setting the Interwebs on fire.

Then, recently, I was casually watching a music marketing video (by Greg Rollett) and was immediately very familiar with the marketing model he was describing – and that’s when I had my giant D'OH! moment.

Basically Greg was advising musicians to use the very same squeeze page techniques that I get paid to implement for others.

It’s so obvious but I just never thought for one minute to try and use these techniques to sell and give away more of my music.

So I decided to roll out some classic Internet marketing techniques to see if it increased the consumption of my music.  

The Classic Internet Marketing Model

Here’s how your typical online marketing system works:

  • Drive leads (otherwise known as people) to your squeeze page.
  • Use effective sales copy to get their name and email address in exchange for a freebie
  • Send the freebie to their inbox
  • After that the barrage of emails begins. The clever marketers will start by offering you some further free value, before starting to slip in the hard sell.
  • Once a prospect buys something cheap, you then target them to buy increasingly expensive products.

For the purposes of this experiment, I am simplifying this model. In my case the strategy is as such:

  1. Send people to the squeeze page
  2. Get them to opt-in to get their free music download
  3. Send them a little bit more free stuff, like Youtube links, more free music downloads, maybe a short e-book or something.
  4. Then hit them to buy a CD or download of something totally new
  5. Send them some more free stuff
  6. Ask for a second purchase, can be of something old, seeing as *cough* this abounds.

Might not sound all that groundbreaking but contained within that little plan is a LOT of work.

For example: the squeeze page…

Firstly, I had a look at my existing website and knew straight away that I needed to build a new one. Why? Because squeeze pages by design have one single focus – getting visitors to fill in the opt-in form.

Next I needed a third party digital goods transaction and delivery provider that would enable me to allow some free downloads as well as easily hook into my mailing list management program. I eventually settled on DPD ( who provide you with the ability to sell or give away up to 10 digital products for a monthly payment of US$5 and have great integration with various mailing list management providers.

And so the page is up and working: [pictured right]

Here’s a list of things I plan to do next:

  • Improve the look of the page
  • Improve the copy (words)
  • Add a video to the page for those who don’t like to read
  • Construct a sequence of auto-responder emails offering both paid and free content (music)
  • Get as many links to the page as possible (social media, article marketing, online advertising)
  • Send people who dig my live shows to the site
  • Website optimization via A/B split testing

And that’s just the start; there is so much you can do – website optimization via A/B split testing anyone?

One thing I did already was stick the button up the top of a very stripped –down version of my MySpace page – – it will be interesting to see if that converts.

Fishing for Fans in the Great Sea of Content

Classic Internet marketing is not usually the kind of thing that musicians tend to consider appropriate for promoting their art. Yet to me, giving it a go makes perfect sense because getting more Facebook “likes” or YouTube views is one thing, and an important thing, but it’s not a sale.

Look at it this way: Once you send someone to look at your YouTube video – then what?

Mostly, after looking at your video for a bit, people just drift back off into an endless sea of content. Sometimes they spread the word for you, but then what? Not much, that’s what.

The thing that is inherently flawed about the way musicians in general (myself included) approach the whole music business palaver is that they only really expect to ever start making money once they are getting hundreds of thousands, if not millions of YouTube views and Facebook “likes”.

If your average small businessman had to get the attention of millions of people just to start making some $1 sales, forget it! They wouldn’t bother. Most small businesses survive due to their ability to make a decent wad of cash out of a manageable amount of customers. 

For most musicians, the music-dollar is stuck under a big, heavy, inverted pyramid. How are they going to get the cash unstuck and into their pocket?? Possibly by putting some tried and tested Internet marketing techniques to work for them. The jury is out but I can report that I have had some encouraging results already. I’ll let you know how I go in a few months.

Seamus Anthony is a musician from Melbourne, Australia. If you like Nick Cave, Leonard Cohen or the Muppets, you may well want to get your free 4 track EP here: The music video for his track 'An Interesting Life' is embedded below.


This post is compliments of WayCoolJnr, an amazing blog worth subscribing to.

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  1. This is a great post and I enjoyed reading it! Much of the correspondence about online marketing is very general in nature. However, your post describes a real world example of how specific products can be sold. I personally believe that anything can be sold online that is sold through more conventional approaches.
    My primary focuses right now are article and SEO which work pretty well too. Thanks again and best regards!

  2. Hey there,
    Loved your feature and totally agree. I checked out your band page and it looks good. We at Guguchu are offering exactly what you are trying to do.
    A clean, own branded band page and widgets acting as the band’s store fronts, a powerful selling solution, and the marketing tools to drive fan traffic to the band’s store fronts. Today we announced the release of Smart Payment Routing which allows artists to sell both single tracks and higher priced items while minimizing Paypal fees.
    The key is that while we agree you should ultimately have your own band website, we allow you to set one up in I’d say 2 to 3 hours. No need to build it yourself. Music, store, pics, videos, fan signup, free track in exchange for an email address, viral spread through social networks, show announcements, customization, etc. Easy setup and continuing maintenance. Just point your existing page to the Guguchu band page.
    Would love to give you a demo or set up a band page for you. Let me know.
    CEO & Co-founder

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  4. I believe there are a lot of elements within internet marketing that the musician can utilise. (except perhaps, the annoying robotic marketing copy…)
    At we’ve written posts on creating a landing page on your facebook page (in effect a ‘squeeze page’).
    I’m curious to know what email marketing software your using?

  5. Hey Mark, mailchimp. Seems ok, although I have noticed that more musicians who are into this kind of jazz recommend Aweber… do you have any opinions about this?
    Behyped looks awesome by the way, will definitely bookmark this site.

  6. Great article, agree completely.
    We’re believers of this “landing page concept” combined with effective internet marketing practices as described in your article.
    In fact, we’ve created a platform that allows artist to create these squeeze pages easily.
    Simple concept – song based websites: 1 Song. 1 Site. 1 URL.
    It’s a nice format to BRAND a song, enrich the music experience for fans, increase fan loyalty & help drive sales.
    Artists can make attractive song sites optimized to showcase and promote their music the way they want it in only minutes.
    Each song site comes with lyrics, artwork, videos, notes, a variety of download options & access to intuitive promotional & tracking tools.
    Again, thanks for the great article, and if your curious about some of our branded song pages… Check out how some artists are using viinyl:

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