The music industry is a tough place to survive. It’s hard to make your way even if you’re talented, and it can be downright impossible if you don’t know the right people. But before we get into how to do that, let’s discuss what makes an artist successful in the first place – their music.
When you’re new to any sort of promotion, start small. Music marketing isn’t easy, and it takes a lot of time to build a career. If you’re not feeling discouraged already, here are some key things to remember:
1) Make original great songs
2) Take your tunes everywhere
3) Make friends in the music business
4) Use social media effectively
5) Don’t forget the music video
6) Don’t cheap out on distribution and promotion
7) Have a plan for promotion and career growth
Don’t be afraid of the long game with music promotion! The more hard work you put in now, the more likely you’ll be to break into new markets and build up a larger following. Just keep at it and things will work out great in the end.
There’s no surefire way to guarantee new exposure, but with these tips you can cobble together a music promotion plan that best meets your needs!
The basics of promotion are simple: play live shows, produce singles and albums, and share on social media. But there are so many other things independent artists or signed artists can do as well!
What is music promotion?
Music promotion is the business of getting your tunes heard by as many people as possible. Whether that’s through online distribution or getting yourself out to play concerts, there are a lot of options and no one specific path to consider. Think about what you want to achieve and how to do it best.
Setting your goals
Once you have a better idea of what kind of songs you’re making, it’s time to set some goals. These aren’t one-size-fits all sorts of goals either. Some artists may want to get signed by a record label quickly while others are happy selling out small venues in their hometown. Know what you want and set out to get there.
Finding your audience
There are plenty of ways to find the right people for your songs. For example, you can take part in social media sites like Soundcloud and Facebook. These sites let you connect with fans and other musicians alike, making them an invaluable resource for promotion. You can also try having contests on Twitter or giveaways on Soundcloud. People love free stuff, so this can be a really useful tool for growing your audience.
Why music promotion is so important to independent artists
Many independent artists don’t think promotion is important because they’re not signed to a label. They may be featured on blogs and play live shows, but that doesn’t guarantee they’ll get any significant attention.
The best way to increase your chances of getting recognized is by promoting yourself. Promoting new releases is a great way to build up your fan base, especially if it’s new material or something rare. Then you can scale things up as you progress in your career.
Create social media profiles for yourself
Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, etc. are all great places to start. Post regularly about your music, and when you release new material try to send it out to as many people as possible who may be interested in what you’re doing.
These are great for reaching new fans and networking with others. Even if you’re new to promotion, this is a great way to help new fans find you online.
Make sure your best songs are promoted first and the most. It’s best for indie artists to upload best songs on sites like Audiomack, ReverbNation and Mixcloud. This will attract listeners.
Be consistent – regular basis, best ways (scheduler if you’re like me),
Once you have some new content from your latest release or tour, it’s time to get people talking about what you’ve done! There are a few different options for new releases. One of the best new ways to get new fans is through social media sites like Soundcloud and Facebook. If you have a new album or new live show, these are great places to get your songs out there.
Don’t immediately get discouraged if not many new people find your page immediately, though – it takes time
Share your old music and new music on streaming services like Spotify and Apple Music
How can you promote your own music independently?
One of the best things you can do to kick start your career or music business is to create a Band website or an official website. It’s like having your own online shop, but without the hassle of owning stock or any of that rubbish.
You can sell online gigs to fans online, selling mp3s online, selling merchandise online, provide information on band members and even getting online gigs.
Although there is a start up cost to running your own website, the little money you spend is more than worth it in the long run.
Given fans the opportunity to sign up to your mailing list. Having an Email list is key to growing your fan base online because it gives you a direct connection with fans online.
You can get online gigs for music for your band by sending links to new songs or upcoming events. It’s also another place online that you can send people to find out about anything related to your music and band online.
SEO (Search Engine Optimisation)
Having your own website gives you the opportunity to use SEO to your advantage, you can link online gigs and online marketing campaigns to your website and online presence. This is really important so people find out about your online activities online i.e online concerts online. If you are using a WordPress website, I recommend using Rankmath to help with SEO.
You can write online articles about your band online and online gigs online. These articles online will link to the website where your fans can find you online.
People can also sign up to receive email notifications for when new articles are available online! Regular blog posts are also proven ways to increase traffic to your website. Just make sure you provide good information.
Electronic Press Kit
An online music press kit online. The online electronic press kit online will make online journalists online more inclined to become fans online, by giving them access to interviews, live videos and songs recorded from live shows online.
In the same way people say not to judge a book by it’s cover, don’t just give journalists a link to MP3 online files online, include a short online introduction about your band online and online links online to online music videos online.
A press release is a great way to promote a new project or event online. Your press release should be easy to find online so have your name, band name and website URL in the headline of your press online release online.
Facebook is a great place to start for promotion online, and you should have a page set up before you try anything else. This gives an opportunity to showcase your music – from photos from that last live show to samples of the latest album. It also helps if you include links to where people can download or buy your albums; this lets new fans know where your music is available.
When you’re well into your career, Facebook can also be a great way to network with other artists and find new fans online. Promoting yourself on social media sites like Facebook can help give you an audience.
Twitter is another great promotional tool for independent musicians since you can actually follow other accounts on this platform. A combination of retweeting and following users that are fans of the type of music you make, along with tweeting out links to new songs and tour dates, can help to get people talking about what you’re doing.
Follow industry professionals who might want to discover new music and use hashtags like #musicmonday or #wednesdaywisdom when you tweet links to new songs.
This gives you a better opportunity for professionals to discover your music via hashtags – and maybe even share it with others. Get creative!
Another great social media site that’s become increasingly popular is Pinterest. If your music lends itself to a visual aesthetic, then this could be a good place for potential fans to discover it.
Create content boards around your music and upload new songs whenever you have a new release.
This is a good way to keep fans engaged. This also applies if you’re looking for help from other artists or visual artists, etc. With the right amount of time, creativity and imagination it may be able to get more people behind you in one form or another.
Start by creating a Soundcloud account and uploading some of your best songs. This makes it easy for other people to find you online.
If Soundcloud is where they discover you, then that’s where they’re going to want to follow you and see what new things you may have in store; this can make it easier for them to learn about your live shows, new releases or any other news you have to share.
Do what you can to engage with people who are following you on Soundcloud – whether it’s replying to comments they leave on songs or reaching out for collaborations, this can help make connections with potential fans.
Create a mix of your songs and upload it to the site. This is another great way for people who might not have heard your songs before to get a sample of what you do. Like on Soundcloud, you can share this mix with other musicians or fans online.
TikTok is a great way for aspiring musicians to meet fans and promote themselves! Simply create an account (it’s free) and you can interact with other users by creating short videos. It’s like Twitter – but video!
Another great way to promote your music on TikTok is by making a duet enabled video and challenging people to duet with you and post on the Tikotok. With another user. You can sing your own part or play your part and then the Tiktok user sings or plays their part. Make sure you share this video on Facebook and Twitter too!
Youtube is a great way to share your music because people can actually watch and listen to what you do.
Create your own Youtube channel as this gives you the opportunity to upload music videos for new songs as well as live performances, commentary videos or anything else that might give fans a better idea of who you are as an artist.
LinkedIn is another social media site that music industry professionals are using to network and find new talent. If you make music as a hobby or part of your profession, then this can be useful tool for sharing with people who may want to help promote it online.
Instagram is all about photo sharing online. Creating an account with music-related hashtags can be a great way to get your music out there – you can tag music industry professionals who may be looking for new artists, music fans in the area where you’re performing or anyone else who might find it interesting. Be creative!
Omegle is a great website to find music fans who want to discuss music with you! It’s a video chat website so both users have to be online at the same time. Have a quick search on Youtube and you will see there are quite a few singers and musicians using Omegle to provide content and grow their fan base.
Many subreddits have music promotion threads, where users post links of new music they’ve discovered or their own music for others to check out. This is a great way to get yourself out there for music fans and music professionals – as long as you can provide quality music.
Twitch is a live streaming website. You can share music to fans or music professionals without even having to leave the house! You could write songs with your fans live, mix songs live,perform a live concert to your fans, Live DJ session, music theory lecture etc. You can do this on your phone or desktop computer through the website.
YouTube Live Streaming
Similar to live streaming on Twitch, YouTube is a great way to interact with music fans and professionals from the comfort of your own home!
Make sure you have a good internet connection for this since you will need a solid connection for music professionals and music fans to hear you clearly. You can connect your music equipment to a computer or use the YouTube mobile app on your phone. Now, whenever there’s a webcam and an internet connection, you can interact with fans online!
Release your own music
Music distribution is a digital music service that enables musicians to sell their music online. It’s best for artists who want to control their own e-commerce experience online and offer an unlimited amount of tracks online.
Distribution is crucial for any music artist, record label or band if they want to expand their fan base, get more royalty money from streams and be taken seriously as a music artist online.
By allowing people to listen to your tracks, you give them the chance to become fans and build up a bigger online fan base for yourself.
There are loads of places where you can upload songs like Bandcamp, Audiomack and Soundcloud which all offer free plans.
I use Distrokid to distribute all of my music. Use my special link to receive a 7% discount on your Distrokid plan: https://distrokid.com/vip/seven/804380
Spotify makes it easier for people to find music and put you in front of a an audience who may never have heard of you online.
By making a Spotify playlist, you can collect your best songs and make it easy to listen to them all in one place.
Promoting your own music isn’t without its challenges but like anything that’s worth it, there are at least two alternatives to consider. You can choose to either pay for streaming which is an extra cost or do it yourself like I do.
I make different playlists online and include the playlist name in my online bio on social media platforms like Twitter (online) and Facebook (online). Or you could make on online Spotify playlist on your website or on Bandcamp.
You could also submit your music to an existing Spotify Playlist. There is no guarantee that you will get included but there are Spotify playlists where you can submit music.
Spotify is definitely something I recommend for every new artist, it’s one of the best music streaming sites out there and you can totally make the most of it.
I would really appreciate some love over on my Spotify. Follow me here: https://open.spotify.com/artist/60tOiaRYHBMtzksvJeRJ1x
Online music community
A music community like the music subreddits on Reddit or music forums are also great for music promotion.
The music subreddits on Reddit provide you with an active community, music fans and music professionals to promote your music to.
This is a great way to get involved in a music community online within your niche of music. This will help build your profile as a music artist and allow you to connect with other music fans online.
You can also join industry relevant music forums online where you can share your tracks and get feedback from other artists on the forum.
Collaborate with other artists or content creators
Collaborating with other artists who are doing the same as you online is a great way to promote your own music to your target audience.
By making a collaboration or remix, you can target the audience of another artist and their followers too.
A lot of content creators on YouTube need new music for their videos so if they find something they like and feature it in their video, you’ll gain new fans/followers too.
Reach out to online content creators on YouTube or music forums where they can share your tracks. If another artist likes your track and features it in their own content, they will promote it for you and help target their audience as well.
Online Radio stations
Online radio stations are great for promoting your music to a bigger audience. There are loads of online radio stations across different genres so you should be able to find one which is right for you.
You can submit your tracks or contact them if they offer this service. You can also get involved in their community and share/like/comment on other music they get on their radio station.
Play live shows
Attend live shows and meetup with other bands, record labels and music professionals at these shows.
Performing live is crucial for getting discovered as a new artist or band. You can play your own show or open up for bigger artists online.
There are loads of festivals where you can enter your band for a chance to play too. This is a great way to meet people in the music business and build your fan base at the same time.
An alternative option is playing live shows online with other artists or bands online. This will help you target new fans within the community of whoever you decide to collaborate with.
A lot of bigger artists like Ed Sheeran or Rihanna started out by playing live shows in smaller venues which gave them the opportunity to build a rapport with their audience.
Connect with industry professionals
Don’t be afraid to get in touch with record labels, music managers or other industry professionals online.
There are loads of opportunities out there but you’ll need to get your foot in the door by sending them your demo/press kit/music for consideration.
Best practices when contacting a record label or music manager
The most important thing you should remember NOT to do when making contact with a record label or music manager is to never spam them.
Spamming is when you send them your music without giving them an opportunity to listen to it first and take the time to get in touch with you back. This shows that you haven’t done your research into who they are or why they might be interested in you as an artist.
If this happens, then don’t be surprised if they don’t get back to you because you’ve just shown them that you’re not interested in what they do.
It’s also important to make sure your music is ready before sending it out to anyone. In fact make sure you have GREAT MUSIC to send first.
Doing this will show the people you contact that you are serious about what you do and will give them a reason to get back to you.
Another thing to remember is DON’t get discouraged.
You’ll receive a lot of “no’s” before you get a hit, but don’t let it discourage or stop you from pursuing your dream. You need thick skin to make it in the music industry and there are plenty of other opportunities out there even if you don’t sign with this record label.
Build a rapport with the people you contact and show them why you deserve a chance.
Remember, you’re a brand as well as an artist so make sure your social media is up to date and professional looking.
– Include a cover letter with your email. Keep it short and sweet! They’ll have loads of emails to go through, so make yours stand out.
– Attach all previous press kits or music you’ve released. Don’t send attachments if they haven’t asked for them, but including your previous releases gives them evidence that you’re a serious musician.
– Highlight any accolades you have, such as being playlisted on a major radio station or being mentioned in the press. If they need to contact these people for more information, resources are at their fingertips.
– Mention if you’ve been featured on other artists’ music which may interest them. Letting them know you’re already connected with other musicians in the industry may make them more likely to consider your music.
– Use tools like Google Analytics to track when people are visiting your website, what they’re doing and where they come from (i.e.: which social media pages). If you can show record labels that lots of people are listening to your music, it’s a sign that your fans are engaged and you’re likely to gain new ones too.
– Optimise your social media profiles for SEO by writing relevant content and updating regularly so people can find you easily online. Be sure to link back to your website and include keywords in the description of your profile so search engines give them priority in searches.
Remember that the most important thing is to stay positive and be proactive.
You can’t help what people say about you, but you can control how you respond and let it affect your attitude and outlook on life.
Staying positive will help motivate you in times of struggle and keep the dream alive.
So don’t give up
You now have 24+ tips on how to promote your own music to help you expand your audience, expand your reach and promote your music. The most important thing is to keep at it! There are no overnight successes in the industry so if you’re willing to put the work in then you’ll be able to achieve what you want.
There are plenty of routes into the industry, even if you don’t get signed with the first record label that shows an interest in your music.
You can’t stay positive unless you take action so start making waves in the music industry by putting these ideas into practice!
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How to promote your own music?
There are a number of how to promote your music. You can use social media, email marketing, press releases, and more to get the word out about your music. You can also contact bloggers and other music enthusiasts to get them to write about or review your music.
How do I get my music noticed by a record label?
There’s no one surefire way to get noticed by a record label, but there are a few things you can do to increase your chances. First, make sure your music is as good as it can be. Record labels are looking for artists who have a unique sound and something fresh to offer. You always need to have a good following and show that people are interested in your music.
How do I get my music played on the radio?
You can contact radio stations directly and ask if they would be interested in playing your music. You can also submit your music to online radio stations and services that help promote independent artists.