What Is Digital Marketing?
Online marketing has become one of the most utilized forms of music and entertainment promotion, the old fashioned marketing strategies of sending physical Press-Bio Kits, EPK’s, CD’s and DVD’s is no longer valuable. All forms of media expect content instantly, and in a format they can PLAY with ease. Online PR has become the front runner in all aspects of marketing.
So youʼve been writing, recording or doing the local open-mic night circuit for a while now, youʼve just recorded your ﬁrst single, EP or album and are ready to start getting the word out about your brand. Hereʼs a quick music marketing check-list to help you get on your way:
1. Deﬁne your brand – Ensure your branding is clear, consistent and professional across all your online and offline platforms. Deﬁne your identity who/where you target audience are. Go to your fans, donʼt expect them to come to you.
2. Collect “currency” and beware of “Hungry Companies” – Make sure you are collecting fan data wherever you are, both online and offline.
Never spend money on an “Email Blast”. You will most likely come across marketing companies, “Email Blast” websites and “Promo Guys” who will claim to send your music to a large quantity of DJ’s or music industry contacts. These companies will take $200 (sometimes even $1000), and email your music to a much less quantity of contacts than they claim, without following up and securing you any features or plays. These companies are ultimately SPAMMERS, because their email databases are comprised of email addresses harvested on-line, they are not people who “Opt-In” to receive, and are not grouped or targeted to specific genres. Spend zero on “Email Blasts” and instead find authentic Pluggers/Publicists.
3. Create a website – having your own website instantly create a professional brand. It also acts as a uniting hub for all your other social networking sites. Remember, if Myspace or Facebook died tomorrow, all your fan data would be lost. Having a website ensure you are in total control of your brand and fan data. If you canʼt afford a website yet, then just get a holding page with a newsletter sign-up on it and links to your social networking sites.
4. Prioritize quality over quantity – Prioritize connecting with fans one by one over applications that “autobot” fans onto your social networking sites. This will inspire loyalty in your fan base and will ultimately be the most effective way in turning potential fans into super fans.
5. Be media ready – Ensure you have both physical and digital copies of your music available, and a biography and/or press release too. Many journalists still want to receive physical product in order to judge the professionalism of an artist. However make sure you also have your full album available to hear via a hidden website. We recommend Soundcloud for this.
6. Donʼt forget about ofﬂine marketing – Online marketing has made connecting with fans on a global level so much easier. We can now communicate with people in real time all over the world. However, donʼt forget about your ofﬂine marketing. Your live performance, fan interaction at gigs, and face to face networking are still fundamental. Be aggressive (but nice!) in both your ofﬂine and online marketing.
7. Know your rights – Ensure you aware of the different ways of earning money online and ofﬂine. Make sure you sign up to things like PPL, PRS, or SoundExchange (itʼs free!) in order to collect your performance royalties and keep up to date with issues affecting musicians by checking in with The Future of Music Coalition.
8. Be creative, be personal – Donʼt be afraid to ask your fans for input into your creative process. If they see you are listening to them, it will incentivize their loyalty and you will create word-of-mouth buzz.