Top 10 Digital Marketing Strategies for Musicians

We explore some of the best digital marketing strategies for bands, musicians and artists... 

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With our new Digital Marketing degrees, students will have a fantastic opportunity to get to grips with the latest strategies surrounding selling and promoting music.

But with so many options around music marketing available, what channels and opportunities should emerging musicians and artists embrace to elevate their careers? 

Here, we'll explore 10 marketing strategies for musicians...

Set Up Social Media Accounts 

In a past life, music lovers wanted their favourite bands and artists to create an air of mystery around them and their music. Less is more was the motto.

But in the digital age, this has all changed thanks to the prevalence of social media.

Despite the volume of online noise created by them, free channels such as Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and YouTube can be very effective marketing channels for emerging artists. They are often the first place music industry professionals and thought leaders will go to check out a new act so it's well worth investing in putting them together. 

Create a Content Strategy for your Profiles

When you have set these profiles up, you'll then want to consider how you're going to use them.

Think about the kind of content you want to share, then draw up a plan. It sounds obvious, but you don’t want to bombard your followers with content.

Think sensibly about how will drip feed posts via your channels, then plot this in a social media and content plan using a spreadsheet."

Make sure you include all your channels and an additional sheet for any ideas you may have. If you record them in there, then you can always revisit them at a later date. 

If you’re struggling for content ideas, then do some research into what your favourite artists are up to and how they use their channels. 

Use Different Tools to Find Your Audience 

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Every artist or band needs to work out who their audience is. 

There are plenty of tools out there to help you. From Facebook to Spotify, the majority of these platforms provide basic analytics to help you discover information about your audience - location, age, how they engage with you - these details can be essential tools in your fight to stand out online. 

This can be beneficial for two reasons - you can develop a strategy that will reach your audience more accurately. You can also target those who you know will be interested in what you’re doing. 

Read our article about Spotify for Artists.

Consider How You Engage With Current and Future Fans 

As an artist, your current fans are important but you also need to have one eye on where your new followers are coming from. 

Getting your music marketing right includes considering how you can affirm, then maintain your artist or band’s identity. 

Engage with your current audience by creating and sharing online content in the form of blogs, playlists and newsletters. Then, think about how you can attract a new audience via engaging content. Be as creative as you want but in a way that is aligned with your brand and identity.

If you drive people to your website, then offer them a free track in return for their email. This can be a great way of expanding the size of your audience via a mailing list. 

Get Your Music to Online Tastemakers and Influencers

Networking with online influencers such as bloggers, broadcasters and journalists can be an effective way of promoting your music. If you can establish good relationships with these tastemakers, then they are more likely to listen and potentially shout about any new music you release. 

Getting your music featured on a reputable music website can be half the battle in expanding your audience."

If you're starting from scratch on a promotional campaign, then do some research and list the most suitable websites for your music. Dig out the email addresses of any editors or writers, then start pitching to them. If you can, try and send to a personal email address rather than a generic one. This way it's more likely to be read than immediately moved to the Trash folder. 

Create an Electronic Press Kit 

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If you're after some press coverage in the form of a new track premiere or an artist interview, then an Electronic Press Kit (EPK) can be a handy tool to have. 

You need to include an artist bio, decent image, links to your music and social media accounts. Make sure that the track is as good as you can make it rather than being a poorly recorded demo (unless a lo-fi vibe is part of what you’re aiming to achieve). 

Do your homework and make sure your EPK copy is free from grammatical errors and all links are live. Try and avoid sharing huge files as this will only annoy recipients.

Sell Merchandise to Market Your Music 

If you think you've got your music right and you're looking to cut through, then coming up with some exciting merchandise can be an interesting option.

Whereas in the past, this was related to just band t-shirts, many artists are now far more ambitious.

From the coffin from glam-rock legends Kiss to Metallica's take on Monopoly, there are plenty of options to explore. If you find something that sells, then this can potentially be a good way of funding a tour or release. 

Create a Community Around Your Music

A key way of keeping your fanbase engaged is to create a community around your music. 

How do you do this? Well, this can be via social media or at gigs but try to establish authentic and sustainable relationships with your audience. You can do this by engaging with them on social media or starting a mailing list. 

If you're working on a specific project, then perhaps you can share behind-the-scenes clips from gigs or rehearsals as teasers ahead of a release. 

You could set up a Patreon profile and give fans the opportunity to invest in your music via a monthly subscription." 

If you emphasise this sense of community with your audience, then it will help them stay engaged with your musical journey and share your music and projects...

Invest in a PR/radio campaign

If you’re at the level where you can afford to invest some money in your marketing, then consider working with a PR or radio plugger to help push your music further.

Whether you want to do this will depend on a number of factors - your audience, market and what you want to achieve. If budget is tight, then you may want to take this work on yourself as there's no guarantee that your music will be picked up. 

But it could be worth investigating if you want to reach a mainstream audience. 

Review Your Marketing Strategies 

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Whichever option you go down, it's always sensible to keep your marketing strategies in a state of review. Remember, this is a fluid and adaptable approach and nothing is set in stone. As long as you keep an eye on your analytics, then you can tweak your approach as you go. 

Good luck out there!

Deep dive into the evolving world of digital marketing

Our digital marketing degrees will help you gain a richly detailed understanding of digital marketing fundamentals and specialisms. You'll become a master of online content — someone who knows how to reach and influence people through multiple digital platforms.

To completely immerse yourself in your creative career, chat with our friendly Admissions Team via email enquiries@icmp.ac.uk or give them a call on 020 7328 0222.

Digital Marketing
by ICMP staff writer
December 1, 2021
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