Marketing

Why Blogging Is Essential To Your Music Marketing

Player-blogI write about a variety of social networks that are worth knowing about for indie artists trying to spread the word but I remain a serious advocate of putting blogging at the center of one's online music marketing. Blogs offers a number of benefits especially as a feature on your website or even as your main site. Though such advice may seem counterintuitive as action shifts to social networks, please consider why I make such a claim rather than dismissing it outright.

My own history of blogging goes back almost 10 years and began with a hip hop blog called Hip Hop Logic. The earliest version of that site is gone but it introduced me to other hip hop bloggers and laid the groundwork for launching ProHipHop in late 2004 which I ran as a solo operation until selling it last year. I've also experimented with a number of other less prominent blogs that helped expand my understanding of what can be accomplished with blogging.

Things have changed quite a bit over the last 10 years and it's a lot more difficult to raise a blog to a prominent position. But blogging offers a number of benefits especially when used as part of an otherwise mostly static website. For example, search engines tend to prefer sites that have regularly updated content and posting on a blog allows you a quick way to update on a regular basis whether or not the rest of the site is changing.

Blogs also offer a way to generate content that can be distributed to multiple social media outlets. For example, you can post on your blog and then use a variety of tools to autopost the headline and link to networks or you can say something a bit more unique along with the link back. So a blog can easily become the center of your extended web presence.

In addition to sending content out to one's networks, a blog can be used to centralize activity done elsewhere. So when you post a video on YouTube or photos on Instagram, you can then embed them on your blog. Or if you have a great exchange on Twitter, you can feature the tweets in a blog post.

You can use your blog's feed to power a variety of services from mobile websites to email newsletters to content syndication to other sites. Folks can subscribe to your feed in a newsreader. And, if your feed is hosted offsite, it becomes another extension of your web presence.

Blogs also offer an easy way to set up and design a site with most blogging systems offering off-the-shelf solutions. Given that music services, such as direct to fan sales, usually offer widgets and other ways of integrating their service with your site, a blog can also be your homebase on the web. You control it, search engines can search it and your archives can remain available indefinitely.

Plus, one of the great things about blogging as a form of marketing is that web pirates and folks who overaggregate other people's content are helping you do your job.

These are some of the most basic arguments for putting a blog at the center of your online marketing.

What's your argument for or against such a perspective?

[above pic via J. Money]

Hypebot Features Writer Clyde Smith maintains his freelance writing hub at Flux Research and blogs at All World Dance. To suggest topics for Hypebot, contact: clyde(at)fluxresearch(dot)com.

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13 Comments

  1. Useful stuff thanks Clyde. We’re ramping up our blog activity on Radar. Content syndication is something we’re very keen to build this year, it would useful to get an article about strategy, good practise etc for content syndication
    best, Caroline

  2. Hi Clyde,
    Not sure my last message went through or not.
    I was very interested to read this article as myself and two friends have just set up a blog based website for our charity record label.
    We believe a blog is key because it acts as an online platform for various topics of interest, which may or may not directly relate to the label.
    I personally think this will help the site to be seen as more of a hub of interesting information that people will visit to read exciting new articles. If they buy our CD while there then well.. that’s a bonus, but we would hope they would re visit to keep updated and share the articles we do post through the various online channels.
    It’s http://www.watchtowerrecords.co.uk if you are interested in taking a look.
    Thanks for a good read,
    Matt

  3. Great points, thanks!
    Here’s another benefit:
    For artists, blogging also allows you a little more creative stretch than can be achieved within the limits of status updates and tweets.
    Helps me to keep the creative drive in the center, vital as an independent artist who must also wear most of the business hats in order to build my career.
    I’m reconfiguring my social media strategy now, and this idea of keeping a centralized place for content is making more sense to me. We’ll see how it works over the next few months.
    Cheers!
    Karyn

  4. I started doing it recently to ground myself. To remind myself I’m a fan, too.
    Blogging is, for the most part, really really stupid. There’s very little upside in putting in the work necessary for quality content. There’s even less upside in doing the token image/streaming player/2 sentences posts, because that happens 100 times per second in 2012, so what difference will yours make?
    I think if you’re looking to gain something, don’t waste your time. If you’re looking to learn something, definitely blog.

  5. HJ, depends on what you’re blogging and who you’re trying to reach. Also what space you’re working in.
    Certain areas like rap and tech are so glutted that it’s very difficult to get any attention there.
    And, certainly in rap, quality content in the sense of in-depth, meaningful writing isn’t what most people are looking for. That’s why I got out once I lost interest in ProHipHop. That and the constant lowlife nastiness and stupidity.
    But I think you’re generally missing the point of my post. Maybe I didn’t spell it out clearly enough. I never really have time or space to connect all the dots fully here.
    Go back and check it out. Did I say you’d get famous or make money by just blogging alone? You can, but I didn’t say that nor did I say that’s a reason for a musician to blog.
    So what did I say? Test on Monday!

  6. I’m so amaze with this post where it contains ideas that I’ve been looking for. With these great ideas, I can apply this thing to my project. Thanks a lot for posting this one.

  7. I like this take on using blogs for artists, recently there have been a lot of negative stigma surrounding the hype to be actively using social media as a tool for musicians. I think the best part is that it can be used a central touch point for a lot of other platforms artists like to host content on. Definitely a worthy read here, given me another angle to be viewing the value of online presence.

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