Music Marketing With Paper.li’s Digital Newspaper

PaperliPaper.li got its start as a digital news aggregator powered by tweets on Twitter. With a default news site layout, Paper.li still uses the term "newspaper" but has added numerous sources such as Facebook and YouTube to the mix. I regularly see music industry-related Paper.li editions but I've encountered few by musicians or labels. Here are some ideas for those considering the possibilities. And if you're a musician or label with a Paper.li, please let us know in the comments.

Paper.li strikes me as possibly the best of the link publishing systems that were created in response to the birth of Twitter. Both Twylah and RebelMouse are developing in their own way but I find Paper.li to have more archival value and, if one is using the Pro features, stronger notification and publishing features including email newsletters.

I checked out Paper.li for a project a while back. Though it didn't fit that particular project, I realized it was worth a closer look at Hypebot when Dan Zarella revealed that Paper.li's default "daily is out" phrase was associated with a surprisingly high number of clickthroughs on Twitter.

Music-Related Paper.li Publications

Two Paper.li publications I encounter regularly are The music-news Daily by musician Lionel Tilmont and Original Wall Of Death from the band Officers and their own Wall Of Death label.

However I would not present either of these as excellent examples of marketing one's music using Paper.li. I haven't spoken to either of the publishers so I don't know how they view their work but, in terms of marketing alone, I put them in the category of curators who I might check out further because I'm interested in the news I get from them.

But though both publishers focus on music news, neither presents news in a way that pulls me into their brand. It's thematically relevant but not specific enough to help build a strong brand.

Whatever their actual goals, if you're considering marketing your music or music-related business using Paper.li, I would encourage you to tie your news much more closely to who you are and how you want to be perceived in the world.

Michael Brandvold's The Music Marketing Daily is a stronger example of someone in music marketing curating a Paper.li about music marketing. Howver, if today's edition is a typical example, by the time you're halfway down the page, you're into much more general music and entertainment news which might be of interest to a music marketer but veers away from Brandvold's own brand focus.

Music Marketing Possibilities on Paper.li

So obviously my bias is towards shorter Paper.li publications that are tightly focused on a niche related to the musician or business person. For example:

  • a band and its musical world
  • the personal interests of a musician
  • a label and all its acts
  • the genre of which the band is a part

News niches work differently depending on what the act has achieved. Miley Cyrus could probably put out a daily news edition and it could be All Miley, All The Time. A band that's beginning to get widespread attention might do a broader edition focusing on other bands in their genre or using Paper.li to give their fans a look at what interests them when they're not playing music.

A label could use Paper.li to publish links to the coverage for all their acts beyond special features they might list on their website. An unknown act might use Paper.li to introduce the world to the total aesthetic, philosophical and sociopolitical context for their multifaceted musical art.

And that's the beauty of Paper.li. It's got the potential to work at any level of the game and it has a range of useful features that make it a solid tool for a variety of approaches to music marketing.

More: How To Get More Click-Throughs and Retweets On Twitter

Hypebot Senior Contributor Clyde Smith (@fluxresearch/@crowdfundingm) also blogs at Flux Research and Crowdfunding For Musicians. To suggest topics for Hypebot, contact: clyde(at)fluxresearch(dot)com.

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  1. I want to like paper.li – more specifically I want to acknowledge and say thanks to the people that include our original content in their paper.lis, by retweeting their paper.li tweets. But it feels so…spammy.
    So I generally DM a thank you and leave it at that.

  2. Hi Clyde,
    Thank you for the write up and you hit the nail on the head – the more narrow -or niche – the focus, the more meaningful the content and publication is to an audience as a whole.
    Indeed it’s difficult to determine sometimes whether a publisher is curating for him/herself (to keep up on their own news) or for an audience.
    I think there is a misconception that Paper.li will automagically present the best content ever without ever needing to take action or be present. The truth of the matter is that we do a really great job at monitoring, analyzing presenting content but there does need to be human interaction.
    Publishers should definitely check in to make sure the content we’re fetching is in lines with their marketing goals and that their paper is promoting them, and their interests, in the best possible way.
    The ones who do take the time to fine tune their content and market to their audience are seeing great returns in building awareness and community though, and the PRO package (and white label/ custom CSS) is definitely worthwhile for anyone thinking about using Paper.li as a tool to market and extend brand presence.
    Thanks again for sharing your thoughts and outlining how you think Paper.li can add value. Very helpful.
    If you have any questions you can reach me at kelly@paper.li and join our G+ community, Paper.li Publishers. It’s a great place to share thoughts and insights.

  3. Hi Caroline,
    I can say that most publishers are thrilled to hear from their @usermentions. It’s a great way to meet new friends and strike up conversation. if I can answer any questions, let me know.

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