It used to be that like any industry, with music the cream rose to the top. The most talented artists who made the best music made it a career, not a hobby. Unfortunately with the rise of the interest, musical talent doesn’t always translate into the rise to stardom it once did but why? Well purely and simply it’s marketing. The music scene is awash with 101 bands for any niche of music. If you can think of a style of music, someone is doing it and probably doing it better than you. Don’t fear though, all hope is not lost, what they might not be doing though is marketing themselves like you can. What do I mean by marketing? Well when it comes to music it can mean lots of things. Here are some basics things you can do to stand out from the very large crowd.
Yes I know how obvious this is, everyone needs to be on social media these days if they have something they want to sell but that doesn’t mean they are doing it well. Creating engaging content that draws in fans and entices them to share it is a lot different to just posting gig listings and places to buy your EP. Don’t get me wrong, they have their place but if you’ve got no audience then what’s the point, you may as well be playing in an empty room and you probably will be. Your music should be the main event however getting people to listen is the key. A great example of this is Lewis Capaldi, his music is fantastic but his social media content, specifically his Instagram stories have helped him no end just because they are hilarious and engaging, its the kind of content people love to watch and share and that helps drive more interested parties to his page which in turn means that when he does post about his album launch or latest single, more people are following his pages to see it. To be clear, I’m not suggesting you go out there and video a long Instagram story about a toilet brush like he did (If you haven’t seen this you should defiantly check it out) but something appropriate for your audience. If your a singer-songwriter then maybe do a video explaining your writing process, if you’re in a band then maybe some fun behind the scenes antics. Anything other than just gig listings and Single/EP/Album launches is a good start.
It’s always a good start to have a decent eye-catching logo. A good logo is something that people will remember. Something that stands out on a festival poster is even better. If you think about some of the biggest bands in history, they have had a logo that is recognisable anywhere, The Rolling Stones Lips, the Nirvana smiley face, the Led Zeppelin runes, all examples of logos that need no text announcing the band to be able to recognise them. Now I’m not suggesting you go without your name as part of the logo, some iconic bands only have their name as the logo but it’s usually something bold and rememberable, think the Metallica, Slayer or AC/DC logos. Its a key piece of marketing for you and if you do it right then people will remember it, they might even get it tattoo’d on themselves! Don’t get me wrong, no one is arguing that your MS Paint skills aren’t top notch but It’s worth spending the money getting a decent graphic designer to create a logo for you, that doesn’t mean you can’t go to them with an idea or concept but getting a professional to create the final product isn’t going to hurt. The benefit is that they can create something you can go on to use on t-shirts, mugs, websites, whatever you like and spread your brand far and wide
Music videos are a key piece of marketing for you and your music. I’m sure you can think of plenty of great music videos that don’t even have the band who wrote the song in it! A great music video can really draw new listeners to you. The best example of a band better known for their videos than music would be OK GO, their music video for Here It Goes Again has over 46 million views on Youtube and at the time of release was a massive viral hit. 4 guys messing around on treadmills! That’s all the video is. So when your thinking about your video, try and be creative. That doesn’t mean the classic performance video is something to avoid, just try and bring something new to the table, something that sticks out a little compared to all the other artists, put your spin on a classic concept. Again, it’s worth paying for a professional, only because they have the kind of equipment that’s going to give you a great quality video.
I hope this article helps you and although I’m sure plenty of people will feel differently, this is just meant to be some basics that if you get right, could set you on the path to great things! Best of luck and if you want to have a chat about anything mentioned in this article then don’t hesitate to get in touch.