Waiting around at the punk show for your band to get discovered by a lurking talent agent is so 90’s. The Internet presents a huge array of options to get your band’s music out there and into the ears of your audience. You don’t have to have a fancy record label campaign to promote your material, just a little social media know-how.
Putting Your Music Out There
Start by establishing your presence on major music hosting sites like Myspace, Bandcamp, Soundcloud and Last.fm. If you are serious about your project, establishing a .com website for it will lend it credibility. Consider putting your tracks up for download with well-formatted ID3 tags to properly identify you to your audience.
When your tunes are out there for the world to hear, cover your social media bases. Establish a strong presence on Facebook and Twitter to engage with your fans and let them know of your next performances.
If you’re a hometown outfit, establishing a relationship with the bloggers and indie publications of your area is a must. Engage in community forums, promote your band’s next show in your city’s subreddit, and keep a comprehensive RSS or Twitter feed of any zine or alt-weekly that may be willing to give you a write up.
Maintaining a Youtube presence is also vital. It’s another outlet for people to listen to and share your tunes, even if you don’t have a full music video. Even just a live recording of you playing your first single on funky science lab stools or strumming away in a hip coffee shop is good material for your fans to share.
Keeping Your Website Strong
A little SEO knowledge can go a long way if you’re setting up your flagship domain. You don’t need to mount an entire ad campaign, but having your pages be easily digestible to web crawlers will help searchers find your music. Consider doing some basic keyword research to see who is searching for what in your area.
Finally, make sure to start up a band blog and update it at least once a month. Writing about what you’ve been doing as an act, memories from your last show or even a fun piece of fan interaction gives you the opportunity to share posts across your social media. Fresh content also gives your site better link rank in search engine results pages. And flexing those writing muscles can only help your lyrics, right?
Developing an EPK (electronic press kit) can be a valuable tool as your act grows. This is a conveniently-packaged collection of documents and press material that can be transmitted to bookers at the click of a button. It can serve as your rider, promotional material and professional introduction all at once.
Wrapping It Up
Learn to use the variety of free tools that are at your fingertips to figure out what’s working with your online endeavors. Mashable.com has great tutorials on how to use Facebook Insights and Google Analytics’ easy-to-use interface will make analyzing your visitors a snap.
It can be scary trying to do your own marketing, but the Internet is an exciting opportunity for the savvy bandleader. Just take advantage of social media and webpage optimization to get your music out there to be discussed and enjoyed.
Michelle is an aspiring writer with a passion for blogging. She enjoys writing about a vast variety of topics and loves that blogging gives her the opportunity to publicly voice her thoughts and share advice with an unlimited audience.
The picture is of independent artist extraordinaire Cory Mo who has a dynamic website at http://corymo.com/