As a new or aspiring musician, the biggest challenge you will face is getting the word out. It’s easy for your mom, siblings and neighbors to support you but that’s not enough. It’s also easy to have your local church promote your music but that’s not enough either. To truly become a breakout musician, you need much more exposure than that. Try these five ways of promoting your music online and you’ll see just how far you will go.
There’s nothing worse than people hearing your band name or your name and rushing off to the Internet and finding nothing about you. It sucks and has the potential to halt your efforts. Start with the basics like a simple website where people can listen to your music, download some free tracks, find out more about you and so on.
Think of this as your HQ, the ultimate destination for all things YOU. Make sure it is as complete as it possibly can. Remember this website will be the first impression your fans have of you, especially as a new musician in a digital age. So if it sucks, it’s downhill from there. Of course, this is entirely different from star musicians that start their careers on national TV shows such as Idols or America’s Got Talent. For you, this is your business card so make it count.
Now, you can move to social media particularly Twitter and Facebook. Don’t overkill by having your profile up on a million social media websites. What you need is a set of social media profiles that you can manage and respond to easily. Plus, you also want to go for the ones with the most number of users in your area.
Social media is the lifeblood of your online promotional campaign. Start talking and get people engaged. Don’t just spam people with links to your song; talk to them about real stuff. Comment on their posts, reply to their mail, show them the real your real side. This is bound to get people noticing you and getting interested in what you have to offer.
YouTube deserves a mention all by itself because it is unlike any other social media or web medium. It uses video, which is the most powerful way you can promote your music. Take a guitar, get someone to shoot the video and let it go. A word of caution: don’t try to make it too elaborate but neither go for the tacky kitchen table self-video.
Get people to experience you as a person, see you smile, laugh, sing and if necessary, dance (depending on your music style). The interesting thing about video is that people can connect with your passion and enthusiasm and respond. Don’t expect an overnight success or one million views in a week but try and keep the audience you have engaged and entertained.
Many torrent sites today are giving back by supporting budding musicians. They put your music up as a banner on their home page and have their users download your music for free. This is an excellent way to reach millions of webs users for awareness purposes. In many instances, the offer to buy the album is bundled with the free download and many users will pay a few dollars if they like your music.
Getting to position your music will be the difficult thing through this way. However, because your music must appeal to a very wide and diverse audience and also from specific countries, most torrent sites are heavily skewed to particular types of web users.
Novel Music Sites
There has risen a bunch novel of sites dedicated to helping budding musicians such as you to get their music out. Some will ask their users to pay an optional price for the music, if they like it. For instance, they can listen to it and depending on how much they like it, “tip” the musician with some cash. Others will request you to pay for access to the music on the store and then divvy up the proceeds depending on the music most listened to by users.
These platforms are easy to join and hardly charge anything to submit your music. They don’t usually have tremendously large followings but they offer an alternative venue to promote your music.
Combining all five, you will find that you have access to potentially millions of people online with virtually no cost at all to reach and monetize them. The take home lesson is that wielding the power of the Internet can either make or break you so use it with caution and due respect.
Scott loves to write about technology and the social impact it has on various aspects of life. In his spare time he loves to play the piano, which he picked up at Morris Brothers Music Store.