100 Music Promotion Tips!
As an independent artist, the promotion and marketing of your music are absolutely vital to the process of getting it out the right audience. If you are an independent musician who is serious about your growth, you MUST have a plan to get your music out to the masses.
I've put together 100 tips that I believe will get you thinking about ways to promote your own music!
Be sure to drop a comment at the bottom and let us know your favorite promotion method if it isn't listed here! That's what being part of the #TRiiiBE means! Helping your community grow.
So, if you have a promotion technique that isn't listed here, drop it in the comments and help your fellow independent artists out!
Here are the 100 promotion tips:
1. Utilize the TRiiiBE's Viral Video Promotion Technique that I taught to Nick Cannon! We used this technique to get 21,000 fans on the TRiiiBE Worldwide fan page over the course of a few months! It can put an exponentially more amount of eyes on your videos.
2. You must learn your niche market or hire/befriend someone who is an expert.
3. Be sure to allways think of the fans first whenever you are making decisions.
4. Bue sure to always begin early. Pre-promote your content. It allows time for a viral buzz to build if your content is relatable and resonates with the people.
5. As an artist, you consider taking the time and spend the money to get a great promotion from an agency, (LIKE TRIIIBE WORLDWIDE) to get some local media coverage.
6. Be sure you produce great content and get it to your fans often. Don’t wait until they need it, this way you will always be at the top of mind.
7. Email lists must be your new best friend. Make sign up simple and easy to do. Put it visibly on your website's pages and watch it grow! MailChimp is a great email list builder you can use.
8. Once you have an email list, learn how to put your email lists into groups (genre, location, email engagement) to fight email burnout.
9. Learn how to produce and send greeting cards for your brand. The best ones get shared around the internet with friends.
10. Be sure to make your website an experience by keeping it updated; including news, giveaways, polls, coupons, basically just make it memorable to make it worth revisiting. If you don't have a website, check out Artist Perfect! They specialize in creating websites for music artists!
11. Always put your content and marketing material online in downloadable form for easy access by the media and your fans. I suggest using something like Google Drive or DropBox.
12. Enable and encourage others to do your promo for you. Ask fans to put up flyers and send out emails. Create a brand ambassador program where they can make money! Put a poster online as a free downloadable PDF for fans to use!
13. Create, utilize and reward a street team. (OR a digital street team! We, at TRiiiBE Worldwide can show you how to create one! Just book an advanced strategy session here.)
14. Talk to fans and take informal polls. Have they seen your ads? Where? Did they grab them and provide useful information? Survey your audience via email, on the web, and at shows that you have!
15. Create and put a sticker of your music, social media profiles, or website on your own car. You will have promotion everywhere that you drive.
16. Connect with other influencers in your niche with Instagram, turn on notifications for their posts. Leave well thought out comments on their posts that add value to the post and their audience. People WILL follow you if you make great comments on Instagram.
17. Be sure to enhance the value of press releases by always attaching a photo or graphic! A pictures speaks a thousand words! Get photoshoots often so you always have pictures to use.
18. You should seek sponsorships. Big sponsorships are great, but no sponsorship is too small to consider even if it's just cross promotion in ads or free giveaways! You can find plenty of brands who are looking for ambassadors on Instagram.
19. Always think yourself as a brand that needs to be defined, marketed, and protected! Get business cards that you can hand out! If your business card says that you are an independent musician, then it must be true!!
20. Try local cable TV. Some local spots on Fuse or other targeted channels go for as little as $7 each. Check out Spotrunner or your local cable company.
21. Try local internet advertising via Google Adsense, Facebook, YouTube, or Instagram advertising! You can set up an advertisement and build an engagement audience of superfans! If this sounds like something you want to do, book an advanced strategy call with the Chief here!
22. Make sure you advertise on internet radio and blogs that serve your market. We can put you up on our artist spotlight blog and then advertise it to your local area to generate a buzz! You can use that blog post when you are booking shows! If that sounds like something that could help you put your music in front of the people who need to see it, read more about our artist blog spotlights here!
23. Create an air of consistency by running ads with different content to a video engagement audience of fans who are watching your video ads! This is an advanced video advertising strategy!
24. Be sure you search for internet radio outlets that you can submit your music to! Internet radio is always looking for new content to introduce to their audience.
25. Always think out of the box with radio tie-ins. Try talk radio for classic rock or jazz radio for a fusion. Radio stations want to expand their audience too.
26. Be sure to co-brand with local businesses. Try a bar or specialty shop or metal with a tattoo parlor. Worry less about money and think more about exposure.
27. This could be a little expensive but consider sponsoring somebody else’s event. Consider trading sponsorships.
28. Run your own affordable net radio station on Live 365.
29. You can add a blog to your website to keep content fresh with news regarding music, even if it isn't your own. Blogger.com has free tools.
30. You could create content that ties in with current events to increase your chances of going viral and getting a massive internet buzz! There are ways that you can make this happen using the promotion techniques that we teach here at TRiiiBE Worldwide.
31. Can't find the right discussion group? Start your own discussion group for free at Facebook, Yahoo, or Google Groups! Tell group members to invite their friends! Stay active in the group to cultivate engagement and growth!
32. Make sure you are on social media and stay active, whether organically or with paid advertising. Don’t just set it up and forget it. Update it and promote it. Add value to your fans outside of your music. Give them inspirational quotes, even better if those quotes are your own!
33. Make everything you do an event. What holiday is near? Is it your birthday? An anniversary near? Is it a full moon? You get the idea. You can sponsor your event on Facebook and make sure that your event has an actual turnout! We can help you achieve this!
34. You must consider the internet as your new best friend. Study it, learn from it, explore it and use it! I used the power of the internet to build a global Hip Hop movement and go viral with over 5.6 million views! As a result of the internet, I reach people that might never have seen my content before!
35. Run contests for best poster design or homemade videos dancing to your music. Share all the entries on your social media account.
36. Produce monthly or even weekly podcasts. Consider having it produced cheaply or in trade for tickets, etc, by a local college DJ.
37. Do anything you can think of to enhance the consumer experience. It can be as simple including a handwritten letter with purchases or calling your customers up after they buy from you.
38. Be sure to give stuff away – backstage passes, seat upgrades, seats on stage, tix to the sound check, mp3’s of live songs.
39. In the music industry, business perception can be a reality. Is your show the biggest, best, loudest, “most talked about”? Even if it isn't...be sure to tell the world that it is.
40. Always magnify, multiply, and monetize the hardcore fan experience with a Platinum level fan club that offers exclusive downloads, pre-orders, insider news, preferred seating at shows, etc. You can create a place where fans can donate monthly to your passions here (it's free!)
41. Don't forget the old school methods; cut through email overload by also faxing calendars and press releases. Use a free computer-based fax broadcast service.
42. Announcements are great to the mainstream press but be sure to always include bloggers, internet radio, record stores, and colleges.
43. Always make your flyers look like mini-posters worth hanging up in a gallery.
44. This one is a little expensive but if the event is large enough it could be worth it, fly a plane with a banner over someone else’s event!
45. You can create a moving billboard. Park a van or truck with a banner or car wrap on the main street in your area or across from a show by a similar act.
46. You could make posters for an event or series of shows. Place it strategically near a competitor or across from a college campus!
47. Post flyers with your brand, including social media accounts, website, etc, all over your town where the people who might be your fans hang out.
48. ALWAYS pass a clipboard around before your shows to capture emails to alert them about new shows in the future or do a survey about what type of music they want to hear so you can tailor your music to your audience!
49. Meet your fans face to face and ask them for feedback but how you can serve them better! You can even monetize it by making it a meet and greet! Show up with merchandise like CD's, shirts, posters, etc.
50. You could try the good old fashioned US mail occasionally. It actually gets people's attention. Make a newsletter, mail it out to the fans in your city!
51. Always promote “After Parties” that are cheap with a concert ticket. This allows you to extend your brand or even tag onto someone else's at low cost.
52. Be sure to hand out flyers on the way out of the live shows that you perform at.
53. Be sure to capture info from anyone who makes a purchase particularly ticket buyers.
54. Be sure to ask your web visitors questions. Polls are free and easy to set up with sites like PollDaddy.
55. Always sell merchandise at affordable prices. It’s branding that someone else pays for! The only exception is for limited edition items.
56. Get creative with your merchandise – don’t just sell shirts. Try keychains, buttons, and patches for example!
57. We use Shopify to run maintain our website / merchandise / blog because of the versatility that it provides us with. However, if you are looking for an alternative website creator that is designed specifically for musicians, check out Artist Perfect! They create artist websites that are highly interactive and digestible to your fans!
58. We live in an age of too much info and media, you must work to make yourself a trusted gatekeeper for your genre of music. Use newsletters, blogs, tips, links, internet radio, and more. Don't just write about yourself. Write about things people who care about you also care about.
59. Carry a video camera everywhere and post short videos on YouTube.com and elsewhere of live shows, interviews, backstage, etc.
60. You must create your own blogs or web sites so you can control your own narrative. You can make yourself the only (or primary) advertiser, but keep it real with info and news from others.
61. Be sure to send thank-you notes to your fans if they have bought merchandise. Not emails; written notes. No one says thank-you anymore. It will be remembered.
62. Be sure to ask for the purchase. Never forget that you are in sales. People are never going to know that you have something to sell unless you tell them.
63. Be sure to market to the niches that might like your music! Find venues that play music in your genre.
64. Always make your emails and website posts useful to the reader. Add info and links to things your audience might find interesting or useful that you have nothing to do with. Add value to their lives outside of just music.
65. Once you reach a certain level, be sure to hire or befriend a tech-savvy person who will help you keep up on new technologies and internet promo opportunities.
66. ALWAYS share your best promo ideas and avenues of promotion with other stakeholders: bands, promoters, labels, publicists, and sponsors in a thinktank environment. Two heads are better than one! This is how the TRiiiBE grew so big, so fast.
67. Make use of graphics, be sure to create and use banners. Don’t have time or $ for Kinkos? Try Avery Banner Maker.
68. You can trade other artists occasionally for targeted email lists, but don’t overuse them.
69. Make a happy birthday song and promote it to everyone who has a birthday in your area! This will create an evergreen advertisement that refreshes every seven days that will introduce your music to a fresh audience every week! If you need help setting up this advanced promotion technique, schedule a strategy session here!
70. You can partner with a charity. Build goodwill and get more free media opportunities. Bone Thugs N Harmony were consistent community helpers and that interaction with the community helped push them into the limelight!
71. Sell a combo package! For instance, if you have a show, sell your album / DVD as a package deal This works for recorded music and live tickets.
72. It seems like musicians want to be actors and actors and athletes want to be musicians. Think about how you can cross promote so everyone wins.
73. Be sure you always have hi-resolution color photos available for easy download and you’ll get much better placement in print Sunday editions and calendar sections.
74. Make sure to find ways to your regular ticket buyers! Building an email list and running a custom audience targeting campaign can be used to target your ticket buyers every time you have an event. If you would like help setting this up, schedule an advanced strategy session here.
75. If there is going to be a meet and greet after the show, make sure that it's advertised. Fans always want a chance to meet the musicians that they admire.
76. Be sure to work to make it easier and cheaper for fans to buy tickets online. There are always going to have to be some fees, but some services like InTicketing charge much smaller fees than Ticketmaster and Eventbrite.
77. Make sure you list all your tour dates online on Pollstar, CelebrityAccess. MusicToday, Live Nation and elsewhere. You never know where people will go looking for a show.
78. Consider offering a student discount or senior discount when you have shows.
79. If you have superfans, create a special “Insider” email list for them, key media, tastemakers and bloggers for pre-announcements who love to know things first…and like to tell others.
80. Some fans travel so try cross-promoting with another show (by the same band or just a similar band) in another city 50 or 100 miles away.
81. You can enhance your gatekeeper status by creating your own free Pandora or Last.FM or Spotify playlists and include the songs of other upcoming artists!
82. Afton Shows is a great way to book a show passively. However, they do require you to sell tickets! Make sure you have a fan base to fill the venue! If you put on a good show, the venue owner might book you for other events outside of Afton!
83. Give song clips to gamer's to put in their gameplay videos etc! Gamers are always looking for music to go along with their games!
84. Create free custom Pandora or Last.FM for each concert event…. It’s a free way to make the concert an event and keep them talking about it to others.
85. Utilize free interns. Try to make sure they are getting college credit so they are motivated to work.
86. Flyers - It’s the cheapest form of advertising. Clubflyers.com even offers free flyers every month or a try local printer.
87. Use a messenger bot to let fans know about your upcoming events, new content, or merchandise drops! We use a chatbot called ManyChat!
88. A good flyer promotes more than one show and is also worthy of being hung as a mini poster. Order a flyer from someone on Fiverr.com! They are cheap and reliable (as low as $5)!
89. Take advantage of shows in the area! Put a flyer near someone else’s show in a related genre.
90. You must make sure all important info is on the front page of your site: new gigs, news, latest photos/songs/videos, etc. Make it easy as possible for fans to see the site is updated and to get to everything quickly.
91. Be sure to encourage fans to "tag" you and your content on other sites like Facebook, Flickr, Instagram, blogs, etc. Then aggregate that data on your site.
92. Utilize Facebook Live to connect with your fans on a face to face basis. This will cultivate a relationship that goes deeper than just seeing one of your posts while they are scrolling on their timelines and feeds.
93. Make sure everywhere you are mentioned (club listings, others bands you are playing with, etc) links back to your site. If they aren't linking, ask.
94. Start a short term blog for every big show or new merch drop. Post when it goes on sale, when an opener is added, when the front rows are sold out, news about the your life, everything. Put a post about it on your site! Content is king!
95. Surprise your fans. Give them something for free that they did not expect! This can be a behind the scenes documentary or even an unannounced project that you were working on it secret!
96. As Tip #7 stated, email lists should be your new religion. A few sites like MailChimp and scriggleit.com offer free mailing list and text messaging solutions. There's no excuse.
97. Take advantage of new free services that offer the ability to manage content across platforms! We use DistroKid to get on Spotify, Apple Music, iTunes, etc because it has an awesome feature called a follow gate plus you get unlimited uploads for $17.99 a year (through our VIP link here)!
98. If you hear about a good promo idea, go online, and research it RIGHT NOW. Try it before it becomes overused. You can drop it if it doesn't work.
99. Up your promotion Karma. If you try something and it's a hit, tell others. Then they will be more likely to share ideas with you. I teach artists my most advanced promotion techniques in my viral video promotion master class! You can book an advanced strategy session to speak with me about what I know and see if the viral video promotion master class is a good fit for you!
100. Read the internet for tips regularly. The game is always changing, staying on your toes helps you keep on top of what's hot in music marketing.