By Forward, August 26, 2021
The digital age is moving forward every day and with it the range of modern music marketing strategies and techniques.
It doesn't matter if you have 100 monthly listeners or 10 million - the future of music is evolving very fast, and everyone has a chance to get a piece of the pie in this revolution.
As a musician or a label owner, music is often the only thing on your mind. Therefore, your social media posts should also focus on your music, especially since you use these platforms to reach more potential listeners. But precisely because you are using social media as a marketing tool, it can be good to follow some marketing principles as well, to avoid being boring. One of them is not to focus on a single topic.
Technology is rapidly changing everything we know about music marketing and fan engagement.
Before COVID-19, breaking a big record was hard enough...
But the global lack of live performances and epic concerts means that every serious artist you know has spent the last year focusing on their digital experience, so you need them to discover your project and expose it
Today, we spend more and more of our time online than ever before, which creates a content overload effect that can be hard to overcome.
When it comes to promoting music and working to build a brand, there are several basic problems we tend to struggle with. For example:
How do we digitally reach new fans and continually build our fan base?
How do we create a unique brand that stands out on competing streaming platforms and social networks?
How do we engage existing fans and create deeper connections with them?
How do we turn fans into a PA for our brand?
How can we engage and monetize a fan base while keeping it authentic?
How can we use algorithms to our benefit?
If you've spent any time recently marketing music you''ll know that even when the music is great, there is no guarantee that traction will be achieved.
If you want to improve the power of your music marketing, you have to cut through the online noise somehow.
Define your topics and strategy
This means that you must have a clear definition of your brand, who you are as a record label. In many areas, social media requires a clear strategy and position. Fans need to be able to identify with you and this is often beyond the realm of music. You should therefore consider how you want to present yourself as a label or artist to the public and think about some issues that might be of interest to both you and your fans.
If you only talk about your music and therefore always try to sell your product, you give a very unidimensional and egocentric impression. People are not only interested in your music, but also in the person behind it and the reason why you make that music. But of course you shouldn't just ramble on about a bunch of random topics either. If you talk about music one day and the next day about the Taliban regaining power in Afghanistan, and the day after that about cars, it will look like you don't have a concept.
Research says that the best music marketing ideas are interactive ones.
A smarter digital marketing strategy in the music business includes content and media experiences that are interactive and experiential.
The human brain responds more strongly to media with spatial and multi-sensory elements because of the way we naturally process information about the world.
For your marketing efforts, that means finding ways to tell your story so you need to get creative with your branded content, such as music videos or email marketing, to make it more interactive for fans. Personalisation is the smarter use of your marketing tools to include personal touches in fan communications, such as using a fan's name in the subject line and body of an email.
Blockchain technology allows you to create a cutting-edge virtual fan experience with elements such as non-fungible tokens (NFTs) and certified digital collectibles.
3-5 topics for your strategy
Experts recommend choosing between 3 and 5 subjects. The most obvious is music-related topics, such as upcoming releases, music videos as well as backstage material, and promotion of merchandising, concerts or livestreams. Beyond that, you should consider 2 or 3 additional topics that you are knowledgeable in, passionate about and want to talk about in public.
One person may be comfortable sharing their private life, the other is involved in local politics and the third loves to talk about soccer or their pet. Of course, this doesn't mean you have to keep talking about the same topics year after year. On the contrary, from time to time you should re-evaluate whether they are still the right ones for you. After all, everyone's interests are always going to evolve, so you should keep reinventing your content accordingly.
The focus is constantly changing
In the same way, you will have to constantly shift your priorities. When you have a new release, you will naturally post more about the music. When there isn't, other topics may come to the fore. If possible, you can also change the thematic focus slightly depending on the platform.
Knowing the main themes also helps you develop concrete marketing strategies for an upcoming release and identify the resources you will need to promote it.
Build a release calendar
It's not important that you release music, but that you release it consistently.
If you look at it as a loop, any song will spark immediate interest that will then slow down. If you have enough material, release another track a few weeks later, just as interest in the first song wanes.
This helps you build on the momentum of your music. It's best to keep offering new material when you know people are still interested.
Releasing free music is a great way to spark the interest of your followers. People are always looking for new music, so offering them free tracks is an excellent opportunity. If you put yourself behind a download door, you're sure to get something in return.
Not only does this create awareness, but it develops your label's personality in the eyes of fans.
Create music videos
YouTube is an excellent platform for sharing your music videos as it has become an integral part of many record labels' marketing plans.
If you have a phone, you have a video camera. There are many different approaches you can take, from a performance-based video to something more abstract. Lyric videos are another great option.
One of the most powerful tools of a record label is the relationship you develop with your fans. Any time you can include them in a project, you're deepening that relationship.
Ask your fans to help you spread the word about your music. Invite ideas for videos and T-shirt designs. By encouraging these projects, you can harness the collective power of your fans.
No matter how effective a marketing campaign is, nothing can match the power of word of mouth. Having supporters tell others on your behalf carries a level of credibility that money can't buy.
Find the right partners
Social media offers many new opportunities. The ability to partner with the right people and companies is one of its biggest advantages.
The most immediate benefit is the exposure of artists to a new audience. For this reason alone, it's a no-brainer.
But there are more benefits than just that. It allows you to further develop your brand.
If you're a record label interested in social justice, look for activist organizations that reflect your ideas. If you're more into sports and athletics, find a team or clothing company that fits what you offer.
The important thing is to find the right partners. You don't just want those that reflect your interests, but those that have an audience that is interested in the events you represent. It doesn't make sense to target an energy drink brand if your label publishes classical music.