In the busy digital marketing world we live in, it can be confusing for emerging bands and artists to know where they can get their music heard and noticed by the right music industry people. Music promotion (music marketing) on the internet can be done in a variety of ways, even sometimes combined.
Social media, digital streaming platforms (DSPs), music blogs and magazines, and online communities are just some of the areas that can help acts grow their fan base. These services can have varied results but if you’re able to use them correctly, you’re sure to be on the right track to success.
For starters, it is best to be on as many platforms, services, and websites as possible. After all, the more visible you are online, the more likely you’re going to be noticed by potential new listeners.
Social Media and Digital Marketing Strategy
For many artists, having a social network presence is their main priority. Platforms such as Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and Tik Tok allows you to directly promote yourself, your music, and shows to people who are interested in you - ‘followers’.
As an independent artist or band, you can develop genuine relationships with followers who are interested in what you’re doing. Social media can be used in a variety of ways; preview new music, share links to your music on DSPs, remind fans of your upcoming shows, host question and answer sessions with fans, and more.
As previously mentioned, the more platforms you’re on can help increase your visibility, especially if you use them correctly.
Spotify, Bandcamp, Soundcloud and More
Although having a presence on social media is hugely beneficial, it won’t matter if those new fans have nowhere to hear your music. Thankfully, there’s a host of services that you can use to stream your music on.
While the audience of these DSP’s vary in size, like social media, it’s better to have your music available on as many as possible.
Spotify (Through Spotify Playlists) is the leading DSP with 36% of the global streaming market. While Apple Music, Amazon Music, and Tidal are ideal places to host your music as they provide revenue from streams.
Working with a music distribution service is a recommended way to get your music on to these services. The Spotify Promotion can be one of your best weapons to promote your music and became well known.
Spotify is one of the best music streaming platforms. From Spotify, a whole new market has been born of music promotion services such as the one offered by Moonstrive Music was born.
In addition, platforms such as Bandcamp and Soundcloud are beneficial for independent artists. While Bandcamp doesn’t provide revenue for streams, it does allow you to directly sell your music (and merchandise) to fans.
Along with Soundcloud, Bandcamp users don’t have to have a subscription meaning anyone can hear your music, potentially becoming new fans. Both services have the ability to offer free and “pay-what-you-want” downloads to fans, which can be used as a reward for their support.
If you’re an act who regularly play live shows, Bands InTown is a great way for fans to see when and where you’re playing. You can update fans of when you’re coming to their town, and see how many people are expected to attend.
Like other platforms, being on BandsInTown is another way to increase your online presence and the starting point of you music career.
It has been suggested that YouTube has replaced music television, and it’s easy to see why. Major artists are able to rack up millions of views on the video hosting site. However, for emerging acts it’s another opportunity to get your music heard and communicate directly with fans.
The content you can post on YouTube can vary from live performances, music videos, vlogs, updates, and more. While the comment section of videos allows you to directly communicate with fans; thank them for their support and feedback.
Despite the array of tools at your disposal, the results of them can vary. A lot of the aforementioned services including YouTube, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Bandcamp, provide analytical reports on the content you post on these platforms.
These reports can provide feedback on when is the best time/day to post on Twitter, which cities are watching your latest music video, which demographic is interacting with your Facebook page, and more.
Using these platforms can be a case of trial and error, however by using their analytic tools they offer, you can tweak your content to be more effective.
While it’s great to have your music on DSP’s, it still needs to get noticed. You’re just one of thousands of unknown acts looking to take their career to the next level.
One of the main ways to be heard on DSP’s is through playlists. Although there are millions of playlists on Spotify, Apple Music, YouTube, and more, being on the right one for your music can be very effective, especially if it’s an influential playlist.
Knowing which playlist to (try and) appear on can be confusing, even time consuming. Thankfully, companies such as Moonstrive Media work with bands and artists to organically reach listeners by including them on playlists that are likely to attract new fans. For example, if you’re a hard rock band, then they can use their network to put you on related playlists.
Reddit, Discord, and other Online Communities
While social media is an ideal way to build an online community, there are other sites that offer more direct, and curated, way of speaking to your growing fanbase.
Reddit is one of the biggest sites on the internet with millions of “subreddits” for various topics and niches. The Reddit music area is vast but is a great way to promote your music.
From genre-specific subreddits to similar bands/artists, Reddit offers plenty of opportunities to promote yourself. However, it is important to remember to be respectful, and genuine. In short, don’t “spam” your music.
If you’re able to build a strong online following, you could create your own subreddit for fans to meet online and talk. Likewise, other online communities include Discord and forums are ideal places for you to talk with fans and promote your music.
Your Own Website
In addition to having various social media accounts, it’s ideal to have your own website.
This can used as your main online hub.
On your site, you can have full control and highlight anything you want to; tour dates, online merchandise shop, embedded media from YouTube and Spotify, contact details and more.
For anyone looking to find out more about your band/artist, your website should be their go-to-point of contact.
Music Blogs and Magazines
Even though being on social media sites, online communities, and streaming platforms can go a long way towards establishing yourself, being covered through online music blogs and magazine can help increase your exposure.
Music blogs and magazines can vary in audience and type. Some cover a wide-range of genres and styles, others are more niche.
Some are owned by major media companies, others are fully independent. Whichever blog/magazine you reach out to, it’s best to make sure their audience is one you’re targeting. For example, do they write about bands that are similar to yours?.