With so much music out there and so many different forms of entertainment, it’s hard to get people to pay attention you. This can be extremely frustrating, and it can be tempting to take shortcuts.
Most of these are a waste of money but more importantly, a waste of time. With that, I present to you eight ways not to market your music.
No one has or ever will be discovered by dropping links in the comments section of Instagram. Your pleas for others to check out the link in your bio, surrounded by hot flame emojis, will mostly be ignored.
(Tagging others in your promotional posts on Facebook is another annoying spamming practice many others exercise. These methods of trying to force people to listen to your music is an irritant to your friends and family. They won’t tell you, but I will.)
2. BUYING FAKE FOLLOWERS
A popular marketing method is buying fake social media fans and followers. The accounts bought are not maintained by real people, so they don’t do much except make it look like you have lots of fans. Most people are not fooled, though, when the number of people engaging with your content are in the single digits. Don’t play yourself.
3. NO WEBSITE
It’s not wise to depend solely on social media platforms to communicate with your fans. While very useful, when drastic changes happen, you have no power.
Having your own website not only makes you look more professional, it gives you a place to conduct commerce so that you can sell stuff like physical copies of you music or merchandise. It also serves as a great place for the media to get pics, bio information, and tour dates.
4. NOT CREATING AN EMAIL LIST
People jump on and off social media platforms and change their phone numbers, but very few people change their email address. Why is this important? Because it’s the most reliable way for an artists to communicate with their fans.
This is best done with weekly or monthly newsletters. Make it a point to collect the addresses of those who are interested in you, so that you can always connect without a third-party social media network in the middle.
5. THE PROMO STALKER
Some artists aggressively seek out personal relationships with bloggers and magazine editors to get a writeup. This can get creepy when artists somehow obtain personal email addresses or try to friend you on Facebook.
Keep in mind that these bloggers and editors get tons of music submissions sent to them daily. It’s very hard for them to listen to everything. Send your music and do a follow up in a reasonable amount of time. If you don’t get a response, it’s very possible that it hasn’t been heard yet or maybe they just didn’t like it.
6. DON’T SEND MP3S
Most email accounts have limited storage space. When hundreds of artists are are sending music bloggers MP3s, you can reach that capacity limit really quickly, causing some of them to just trash your email to free up space. Besides, bloggers don’t post mp3’s anyway. It’s best to send a Soundcloud link or any link that streams your music. Make the process of listening to your music as trouble-free as possible.
7. RELYING TOO MUCH ON THE SOCIAL MEDIA
Sometimes you got to stop being lazy and just get out there and do some grassroots grinding. How are you going to take over the world with your music if can’t a least build a buzz locally? Connect, collab, and perform with other artists in you area and use social media as a tool to build on that.
8. DON’T BUY EMAIL BLAST SERVICES
There are services out there claiming to have thousands-strong lists of people just waiting to be exposed to your music.
Don’t bother! What happens is your music is your music is grouped into a newsletter with a bunch of other releases, then goes out to people who have no idea how they got on the list in the first place. In fact, they don’t even know of its existence because these emails usually go straight to the spam folder.
I’m a music producer who’s been running a music blog for years, so everything I’ve listed comes from what I’ve experienced myself. Before you get ready to blast out that next blazing hot fire mixtape, go over this checklist to make sure you avoid these mistakes. Good luck!