The best marketing tools to grow a music career

By Polina Bondarenko

14 May, 2024

Achieving success in the music industry requires a combination of talent, hard work, and the right marketing strategy. To stand out in an increasingly competitive market and cultivate an engaged fan base, aspiring musicians need to develop an effective plan for promoting their music and themselves. Fortunately, there are a variety of tools available to do just that. Below are the top strategies for making a name for yourself and launching a successful music career.

Establishing a Brand Identity

Before you can promote yourself as an artist, you need to have a strong and unmistakable brand identity. What makes you unique? What is your image? Take your time to craft a cohesive message that resonates with your target audience and sets you apart from other artists. Design an eye-catching logo for yourself, create a website or landing page, and use the same branding elements prominently throughout your online presence across all platforms.

In addition to creating a logo and website, you should also consider creating a tagline or slogan that encapsulates your brand identity. This should be something that is memorable and easy to recall. You should also consider creating a color palette that you use consistently across all of your branding materials. This will help to create a unified look and feel for your brand.

Developing an Engaging Online Presence

Consistently publishing content on various social media platforms is key to developing a vibrant and engaged online presence. Besides your personal blog and website, create official accounts on platforms such as Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, YouTube, and others. Live streaming performances or hosting live music events on these platforms can help you reach your fans in a more interactive way and create a more personal connection with them.

In addition to live streaming performances, you can also use these platforms to share behind-the-scenes content, such as studio recordings, rehearsals, and interviews. This will give your fans a more intimate look into your creative process and help them feel more connected to you and your music. You can also use these platforms to promote upcoming shows, releases, and other events. By engaging with your fans and providing them with interesting content, you can build a strong and loyal online following.

Utilizing Music Promotion Platforms

Platforms like Bandcamp or SoundCloud provide both musicians and industry professionals with a convenient venue for sharing their music with the world. Try and make your music available on as many music streaming services as possible so that you have as much reach as possible. SoundCloud, in particular, allows you to use their “Pro” account to gain valuable insights on how your music is performing across different demographics.

It is also important to take advantage of the promotional tools that these platforms offer. For example, SoundCloud allows you to create custom playlists, share your music on social media, and even create a custom URL for your profile. Utilizing these tools can help you reach a wider audience and increase your chances of success.

Effective Social Media Strategies

Social media can be an incredibly powerful tool for promoting your music, but only if you use it in the right way. Don’t simply post updates repeatedly in order to get more followers – this approach is outdated and doesn’t engage users in any meaningful way. Aim to make quality posts that aim to pique the interest of potential fans or draw attention to recent events. Use hashtags wisely to gain visibility on networks like Twitter and Instagram by including relevant topics or conversations.

It's also important to be consistent with your posts. Try to post regularly and at the same time each day to ensure that your followers are seeing your content. Additionally, don’t be afraid to experiment with different types of content such as videos, images, and polls. This will help to keep your followers engaged and interested in what you have to say.

Reaching Out to Music Industry Professionals

Many artists hesitate to reach out to record labels or other industry professionals because they are afraid of being rejected. However, if you were able to create something noteworthy but no one knows about it yet - how can it be found? Do not be afraid to send out emails introducing yourself and your craft. Connecting with people who are involved in the music industry is key if you're going to elevate your career. Follow up with meaningful exchanges that demonstrate your talents.

Be sure to research the people you are reaching out to and tailor your message to them. Show them that you have taken the time to learn about their work and why you think you would be a good fit. Additionally, make sure to include links to your work, such as a website or social media profiles, so they can get a better sense of your style and sound. With the right approach, you can make meaningful connections that will help you reach your goals.

Creating and Distributing Music Content

Creating and distributing content is essential for staying connected to your fans in an ongoing way, and creating an ongoing stream of content can be relatively straightforward. Experiment with creating behind-the-scenes videos, interactive online performance streams, lyric videos, or even live recordings. In addition to creating content for your own channel, find other creative ways to promote your work such as guest blogging or being featured in publications or radio shows.

You can also use social media platforms to promote your music. Posting regularly on platforms such as Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook can help you reach a wider audience and build relationships with your fans. Additionally, consider creating a website or blog to showcase your music and provide updates on upcoming releases or performances. This will help you create a more professional presence and make it easier for fans to find and follow your work.

Networking with Other Musicians and Fans

Connecting with other musicians and fans should also be a part of your marketing plan. Establishing relationships with other artists in the same scene will not only help you build your network but also make you look more credible  in the eyes of industry professionals. Who you know can greatly influence your success or failure as a musician. Similarly, actively engaging with and listening to what the fans are saying can help you better understand their needs and tailor your music accordingly.

You can also use social media platforms to reach out to other musicians and fans. Platforms like Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook are great for connecting with people in the music industry and building relationships. Additionally, you can use these platforms to promote your music and engage with your fans. By responding to comments, liking posts, and sharing content, you can create a strong connection with your fans and build a loyal following.

Taking Advantage of Paid Advertising Opportunities

In spite of the many free opportunities available for promotion, paid advertising can have its advantages. Depending on your budget, advertising on Facebook, Instagram, and Spotify may be worthwhile. Platforms like Google Ads or YouTube Ads allow targeting specific audience demographics so you can maximize the impact of your campaigns. Consider launching creative campaigns that drive subscribers or increase song/album sales, or engage professional PR firms to help spread the word about your work.

Maximizing Your Live Performance Opportunities

In addition to online platforms, seeking out live performance opportunities can help increase your profile and put you in direct contact with potential fans and industry professionals. Sites like gigsalad or Bandhop are great resources for finding local gigs or larger music showcases. Participating in competitions or finding ways to network with bigger names in the industry can be incredibly beneficial in order to open more doors for yourself.

Ultimately, building an effective marketing strategy is about finding the right balance between online promotion and real-world interactions. With hard work and dedication, taking advantage of these tools can result in a thriving music career.

Written byPolina Bondarenko

Lina Cooper is a young up and coming pop songwriter, artist, producer, a graduate of Berklee College, a self-proclaimed Yellow Manic Pixie Dream Girl and a Ukrainian native currently residing in LA.