Even though there are many ways musicians can promote their music, one of the biggest challenges faced by every musician is getting their music in front of the right audience. Some musicians spam social media with the hope that someone will take a look at their music, while others utilize already crowded marketing channels, such as seeking out radio airplay, paid ads on social media, or more popular music streaming services.
This isn’t to say that musicians shouldn’t use these channels for promotion―they should. However, for new musicians without a budget or team in place to help them execute their music marketing strategies, using untapped channels may prove to be a good use of their time.
If you’re a musician, here are some ways you can promote your music that aren’t commonly used by musicians.
1. Help A Reporter Out (HARO)
Reaching out to bloggers and news outlets for coverage is extremely hard for new musicians, so why not let the reporters come to you?
Help a Reporter Out is a service that sends you emails multiple times a day containing inquiries from reporters looking for help with a story. Simply sign up, scroll through the emails, and respond to the ones that you can add value to. Often times, this can result in links, which can bring referral traffic to your music or website.
Many inquiries won’t be music related, but there are a few hidden gems that can land some coverage for you. Get creative and see how you can put a spin on stories that aren’t exactly about music.
2. Upload Music to Newer Services
Every musician has their music on services like iTunes, Spotify, and SoundCloud. Since the music catalogs are so vast on these services, it’s hard for new artists to stand out anymore.
Uploading your music to newer, less competitive apps and websites can result less competition for your music, which means you’re likely to reach more users of a given service. To find new places to upload your music, search the App Store, Google Play, and page 2 of Google.
3. Guest Blogging
Writing articles about a topic that interests you for a blog or websites is a great way to increase awareness of your music, especially if the blog’s audience is likely to be interested in your style of music.
Find a topic that interests you and overlaps with the interests of your music’s audience, then start contributing valuable content to blogs that cover the topic. If you can become a regular contributor on a popular blog, readers will eventually recognize your name and check out your music.
Guest blogging is also a great way to increase your website’s rank in Google, which can lead to more free traffic to your website.
4. Google Adwords
If you’re looking for a new paid marketing channel to get more website traffic or to promote a new music video, Google Adwords might be of interest to you. Do a quick search for any music genre, and you’ll notice there are no ads. Additionally, if you look at Google’s Keyword Planner, you’ll notice that keywords related to music genre all have low CPC and competition. Because of this, AdWords can be an effective paid marketing channel for you as a musician.
Many people use Google to try and find new music. Play around with Adwords to see if it can work for you. Set up ads that target keywords with low competition to get your website or music video in front of someone who’s actually searching for new music; then convert them into fans with your awesome music.
5. Get Your Music Played in Businesses
An often overlooked promotional channel that isn’t controlled by big record companies is background music―the playlists set up by restaurants and retail stores designed to help increase their merchandise sales.
Pitching your music to background music services, and even individual restaurants, can result in exposure to a large audience if your song is played daily during peak hours. Find small businesses in your area that are interested in supporting local talent and ask them to play your music in their business. Make sure your music is on Shazam so it’s easy for their customers to tag your song.
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