3 Cost Free Ideas For Better Music Marketing
There are more ways than ever to market your music to potential listeners, but with so many options, many artists are missing out on some of the most easy and cost effective promo tactics. Here, we look at three such techniques.
Guest post by James Shotwell of Haulix
Music marketing is just as important today as the songs themselves.
There are countless ways to promote your music today. From social media posts and traditional print advertising to pop-up shops, video streams, song premieres, and more, there have never been as many ways to share your art as there are right now.
For the most part, this is good news. Artists are free to promote themselves how they see fit. Music Marketing is a ‘create your own adventure’ scenario that is unlike anything the entertainment industry has seen before. However, many artists are still missing out on simple, cost-effective promotional methods that are proven to make a significant impact on their bottom line. Here are three:
Make the most of your cover photos.
Reach is a struggle on all social media platforms, and that is something that shows no signs of improving anytime soon. Facebook and Twitter offer an olive branch to musicians with cover photos, which sit atop every profile and allow for a large, wide image. Many artists see these rectangular spaces as a place to add aesthetically-pleasing images or new band photos, which can be lovely, but they are much more powerful than many assume.
Fans news and old want to know what you’re doing next. The hope is that your latest developments appear on their timelines, but that is increasingly not the case for most. Most fans know the best way to learn what is new and coming soon is by visiting their favorite musician’s social media pages, which is why you need to utilize the cover photo space for promotional purposes. The last thing anyone wants to do is scroll and search for information that should be readily available. Use your cover photo to share whatever is most important right now, from tour dates to song releases. Be shameless about it. The easier it is to stay up to date with your activity, the more likely consumers will be to support you.
Maximize the content opportunities found in life on the road.
Touring was once viewed as something artists dreamed of becoming popular enough to do regularly. While that is still a dream for many, going on tour is now an essential part of most musicians’ lives. The vast majority of talent today spends far more time promoting their work on the road than they do making music. It’s a grind, but it’s a worthwhile one for those passionate about the work of being a professional musician.
Sadly, far too many artists on the road today fail to take advantage of the content opportunities made possible by tour life. The allure of the music business is the idea that anyone can use their creativity to make friends and see the world. Your fans want to experience life through your eyes because they know deep down that they may never do the things you’re doing. Let people into your world with a constant flow of content produced on the road. The places you’re going, the places you’ve been, and everything that happens in between should be up for grabs. Pull back the curtains and let people get to know the real you by showing them what it takes to share your creativity with the world.
Start a podcast.
We have written about this in the past, but every musician should have a podcast. Engagement is the name of the game in music promotion, and nothing helps artists directly engage their audience in a meaningful manner as podcasts. It’s the only media format where people can sit and listen to the people they admire for an extended period without hearing a journalist or other personality guide a conversation. Podcasts can be about anything you want, but they should aspire to let people better know you and your interests. If that means you discuss the music, great! If you talk about something else that may or may not influence your creativity, that’s cool too. Be yourself and your fans, as well as people who discover your broadcasts, will be happy.
James Shotwell is the Director of Customer Engagement at Haulix and host of the company’s podcast, Inside Music. He is also a public speaker known for promoting careers in the entertainment industry, as well as an entertainment journalist with over a decade of experience. His bylines include Rolling Stone, Alternative Press, Substream Magazine, Nu Sound, and Under The Gun Review, among other popular outlets.