Imagine trying to promote your band and music without the internet, social media, graphics or video. Both Elvis and the Beatles did it to become worldwide sensations. But how? There wasn’t even cable TV. The truth is, there also wasn’t any real competition out there for soulful, hip-gyrating purveyors of rockabilly, or British boy bands rocking bowl haircuts and cranking out a distinctive sound.
Fast forward to 2020 as you try to promote your band, your music, your sound. The competition for musicians and musical groups has never been more intense. But the good news is that the promotional opportunities for bands have never been more available, exciting, quick and affordable.
Take a look at 8 strategies you can use to promote your music, reach your listeners and pursue your passion:
1: Build your Musical Brand
Creating a brand for your musical endeavor is the driving force behind everything you do to promote yourself. Marketing your brand, whether it is music, movies or mohawks, is about telling your story.
Every musical artist has some story to tell, whether its of humble beginnings, a tortured journey or pure, maniacal passion. Tell your story visually as well as verbally by creating a logo that captures the essence of your musical mission. Your logo should appear everywhere your music goes, including and especially, on your official band website.
2: Develop a Website
Your website is where your fans learn your story. Post news about successful events and upcoming gigs. Hype your new release, chronicle musical collaborations, post photos and share social media links.
Try websites like WordPress or Squarespace to get your started. Or better yet, check out Bandzoogle, a site specifically for bands. Whatever your website strategy, strive not only to make it professional, but go for jaw-dropping, attention-grabbing and mind-blowing visual content.
3: Design Visual Content – Digital & Print
Use visual marketing content on digital platforms, especially your website. Promote gigs and new releases with attention-generating graphics. Print marketing, i.e: posters and flyers, remain a tried and tested marketing method. Future fans can’t hear you jam unless they visually learn where, when or how to listen.
It should be music to your ears that creating stunning marketing materials for digital and print use has never been easier with do-it-yourself, online design tools. Sites like PosterMyWall offer a bonanza of customizable templates that enable you to create professional posters, flyers, videos and social media templates. Check out these templates that you can customize for your band:
Incorporate photos of your events, crowd selfies, Instagram hashtags, and of course, your website address and logo in your designs.
Quick tip: Repetition is a key concept in marketing. Use a single, jaw-dropping design per event, for both your digital and print promotional materials. Simply customize a template you like on PosterMyWall and then resize it for all different platforms with a single click!
Keep those creative design juices flowing to promote your latest releases. View more templates here for inspiration.
4: Create an Unforgettable Album Cover.
With so many new artists emerging every day, and new releases on top of that, your music needs to stand out and get noticed. There is no better way than to design an eye-grabbing album cover for your newest tracks.
You already have the tools to make this happen, easily and without breaking your budget. PosterMyWall offers professionally designed and customizable album cover templates for a variety of musical genres.
Customize a template or get ideas to design a cover that captures both the essence of your music, and the attention of your audience. Check out some album cover templates from PosterMyWall:
You’ve created eye-catching graphics and album covers. Now it’s time to crank it up a notch, with video.
5: Capture it on Video, and You Capture your Audience
MTV certainly knew what it was doing when it broadcast the first music video ever in 1981 (Trivia: It was, ironically, “Video Killed The Radio Star” by the Buggles). Jump ahead to 2019 and you probably know that Youtube is the #1 source of music consumption on-line, globally. If you’re not using video in some capacity to promote your music, you are missing a key marketing opportunity, and most likely, the chance to make it big.
Do-it-yourself online tools provide easy to use, customizable video templates. Design engaging promo videos for everything from new releases, to studio clips, to teasers for upcoming concerts. Consider tagging a video with a short phrase that can bring an audience straight to your band.
Share your engaging custom, promo videos on your website and social media.
6: Connect & Interact with Fans through Social Media
Make strategic use of your engaging videos, eye-catching graphics, and of course, your amazing music, by leveraging the power of social media. Platforms like Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter can be used to your marketing advantage. For example, interact with your audience on Instagram by requesting comments and likes on your posted materials. There is nothing that breeds fan loyalty like tagging a fan in a crowd selfie or video. Fans want to feel special, and feel connected to your music and to you.
7: Mixtapes & Fan Freebies
Continue that connection by sharing music your fans have never heard before. Every musical artist has songs recorded but never released. Create a digital mixtape of unreleased gems along with some newer releases and give the compilation away for free. Hype your mixtape “gift” by hinting at the release date to increase your audience’s excitement and anticipation. The cost is minimal and the upside is substantial in showing your fans that you appreciate their loyalty.
The digital world has dramatically changed the landscape of marketing music, but fans still love to poster their walls with pictures of their favorite bands. Give away your eye-catching posters to keep fans visually as well as musically engaged.
8: Making Music Make Money
Free music is not the only thing on the rise, there are numerous opportunities to earn money for your musical efforts. Bandcamp enables you to list your music for sale at any price you set. Your eye-grabbing album cover can draw the attention of users browsing your musical genre. You can also sell your posters along with your music to continue building your paying fan base on Bandcamp.
To stream is a dream. Getting your music on premium streaming services like Spotify, Pandora and Apple Music, is a huge payoff in terms of reaching a large audience. Sites like DistroKid provide a quick and easy way to get your music streaming. For a minimal monthly fee you receive unlimited uploads to streaming services while you keep 100% of the streaming proceeds. That’s a dream come true.
You create great music. And you’re probably reading this blog because you want the world to know it. Marketing your band is not unlike creating music in that you have to keep doing it. You have to consistently produce new music, just like you have to consistently create new marketing content to keep your audience consistently engaged. That’s a lot of “consistently.” But the good news is that there are dynamic tools available to help you create powerful print and video promotional materials easily, quickly and affordably. Make the most of your marketing opportunities and who knows, you may stand out and take the world by storm, like those British guys with the bowl haircuts.