10 ways to energize your music marketing
The past two years has been a time of uncertainty stagnation for everyone, including independent musicians. And while tours stopped and releases slowed down, the music industry changed dramatically as it adapted to the chaos of a global pandemic.
Whether these changes are permanent remains to be seen, but one thing is certain: music is back in a big way in 2022. Tours are restarting, releases are picking up, and artists are starting to reboot their careers. Which means it’s time for you to not only market your music again, but rethink how you market as the world adjusts to the new normal.
Ready to get your music back out there? We’ve put together this checklist to help you track the essential steps to get back to marketing your music in 2022:
1. Update your bio
It’s always a good idea to go back and look at what your bio says. Chances are some things have changed in your life. Maybe you released music during the pandemic, or hosted a livestream, or found another creative way to engage your fans virtually. Artists usually neglect their bio even when there isn’t a global pandemic to worry about. Go dust off your bio and add some new details.
2. Refresh your website
Put a new coat of paint on your website. Maybe even try a new theme, or something to make it look fresh. No need to rebuild your website from the ground up. But just add some new content, move some things around and give people the impression that new things are in the works and that you haven’t fallen off the face of the Earth.
3. Take new artist photos
No need to hire a photographer (unless you want to and can afford it). The cameras on most modern smartphones are of sufficient quality to capture high resolution images. Just take some well thought out photos that feel more like professional artist photos instead of just snapshots. You likely look different than the last time you took artist photos, so update your image to how you look currently. That’s another indicator to people that new things are happening in your camp.
4. Audit your social media presence
Update the header images and logos on your social media profiles. Make sure the links on those profiles are also current. Remember, this doesn’t just apply to Instagram and Facebook. Check your artist profiles on YouTube, Spotify and other platforms where you can add that information to make sure those are up to date. You can also use this opportunity to take stock in which platforms have value for you as an artist and decide which you should be focusing on. That leads to…
5. Reassess your social media usage
If you haven’t seen much activity on a particular social media platform, don’t be afraid to cut that one loose and focus on the platforms your fans engage with. Your audience might even be on a different social platform. Take a poll of your fans and see what platform they use. And if you’ve tried hopping on a trend that’s popular on a platform but find you’re not successful, it’s okay to keep doing what’s been working for you instead. Lots of people are using Instagram Reels to turn the platform into a short-form video platform like TikTok, but if you take great still photos and your fans are engaging with those instead of the videos you’re trying, stick with what works.
6. Keep track of the numbers
It’s always a good idea to dive into your analytics and see what’s happening and what’s connecting with your fans. Analytics are good indicators of opportunities for you to grow your career and expand your reach. Success could be happening somewhere you aren’t aware of.
7. Maximize revenue opportunities
Creating a website with Bandzoogle allows you access to commission-free selling right from the website, a professional-looking store and tons of functionality. Think of other sales opportunities aside from the typical merch options. That could be a zip file of select music (or your entire catalog for a discounted price), or a PDF download of sheet music. You can even make physical merch that’s different from the usual t-shirts and hoodies. Buttons, hats, pint glasses, or any other unique items your fans might find enticing. E-commerce is more important now than ever in a music industry that’s increasingly gone digital. This is also a time to…
8. Stock up on merch
Whether you’re heading back out to play shows or selling online (even on Spotify!), take stock of your merch inventory. Do you have what you need? There are lots of options that don’t involve buying tons of different sizes and having boxes of XS and XXL shirts sitting around your home. Explore your options for merch and make smart purchases when you buy packages.
9. Update your ad strategy
If you’ve scheduled some shows, or even if you’ve just got more activity planned, think about using advertising to add some momentum to your music career. Show.co is a great ad platform that can help you target and reach music fans using ads on social media or on music websites they frequent.
10. Redefine “content”
Social platforms evolve quickly these days. Existing platforms change features and rules, which in turn dictate trends on those platforms. What might’ve been effective in the past on a platform might not work. And new platforms are created so often that what you’re trying to achieve on one might be possible somewhere else. When a new social media platform launches, check it out and ask yourself a few questions: Is this platform an opportunity for you? Are your fans active there? What do you have to do to engage there? Is it totally different from what you’ve been doing? Or is your time better spent elsewhere?
This checklist highlights just a few of the things you’ll want to consider as you start to flex your music marketing muscles again. For tips on getting back into the swing of music networking, booking tours and more, watch or listen to our full podcast episode “The Post-Pandemic Plan for Musicians”:
How are you planning to market your music this year? Let us know in the comments!