Social media took the world by storm in the late 2000s as a new wave of people discovered the endless possibilities of the internet. Marketing and promotion as we know it has changed drastically in the last few years. We have optimised the tools given to us to promote and engage more than we ever have before. Social media is now a key element in your success as a label/artist. Not only are these platforms available for us to connect with others, but they also provide engaging and exciting opportunities to promote and sell products, like your music!
This article is going to act as a guide to getting the most out of your social media presence to push your music to bigger and higher places. The following are some tips that we recommend you apply to all social media platforms.
Working out your brand is a vital element in social media marketing. You need to come up with a theme for your business so that it is not only aesthetically pleasing but also truly represents you. Think about your colour scheme, the different types of content you want to upload and how to keep it fresh and interesting through variety while keeping it relevant. The theme needs to be consistent across all of the platforms.
You can commission a designer to create your branding guidelines, and these will be used for everything you do. We also recommend you use professional quality imagery (which most smartphones are able to do these days). Download some photo and video editing apps so you can give all your content the same look and feel. Set a professional tone but use catch phrases or keywords to make it personalised.
You want your social media business pages to look cohesive and professional, so these small steps will make a big difference.
Branding Tip, Use colour pallet websites so that your designs don’t clash, you can also use them to match the mood and tone of your Music, check out: https://www.jordanprindledesigns.com/blog/colors-palettes-mood & http://colormind.io/
This is an important one! People love nothing more than to feel like they have a personal connection with the people they admire. There are many ways you can connect with your audience and create a loyal fanbase. Write interesting posts and end them with a question prompting the viewer to respond with their own opinion. Be proactive, start the conversation.
Make sure you try to reply to all of your comments and messages, as it’s important to show you care and are grateful for the support. You should share testimonials, messages of appreciation and fan art on your social media pages, it encourages your fans to create and share more. Listen to what your fans are saying and deliver what they want, whether that be more casual and personal posts, or more sneak peeks.
Engagement Tip: Posts should end in some kind of call to action, examples include “Yes, I Want X!” This is one of the most common affirmative call-to-action phrases. … Snag/Grab/Seize/Score/Gain X Now! … Start Your Journey Toward X. … Do You Want to X? … Activate X Today! … You’re Running Out of Time! … Add to Cart. … Add to Wishlist.
As a label/artist, it’s important to figure out what sort of content you want to be sharing with the world, and how to build your brand and your following. You want to keep your content fresh and different so as to maintain interest. Upload engaging photos and videos of your music being played, behind the scenes action, and promotional content.
Using hashtags that are relevant to your content is a great way for people to organically find your business. You should also take advantage of advertising which is available on different platforms as it can help you reach a wider audience.
Try covers of music that is similar to yours that will have a similar target market. It is also a great idea to do collaborations with similar artists. It’s a great way to learn each other’s styles, push your boundaries, try new things and help grow your fan base.
It’s a good idea to set a schedule for when you post. Rather than posting several times a day and going quiet for a week, we suggest posting at least once a day, every day. You’ll find you get better engagement at different times of the day, so make sure you post your content at peak times on different platforms.
Instagram is one of the biggest social media platforms available, with over 1 billion users worldwide this year. It is available for anyone to use and is a great way to express yourself and connect with others. However, Instagram is also a really amazing business tool with a wide variety of features to help take your music to the next level.
Creating a business account on Instagram opens up a range of new features that a personal account cannot access. Here’s a list of things you can do to make the most out of your Instagram account:
- Get real time insights into your profile to see your market demographic and content interaction. Use the data to tailor your content to be more successful.
- Add your contact details – so professionals who are interested in working with you can contact you a lot quicker and easier.
- Sell directly from Instagram, so any merch or music that you want to sell can be bought directly from the Instagram app.
- Engage with your audience – with a business account, you can connect with your followers with interactive stickers and direct website links on your stories.
Other cool features included in the business account are the age gating tool, which means you can control who can see your posts (ideal if you have explicit content), flexible profile displays, so you can hide any information you want, and also tab inboxes, so you can divide your private messages from general to business.
As mentioned before, branding is massively important, especially on Instagram as it is a photo and video sharing app. Think about your theme and how to display your content. Sell yourself in your bio, it is the perfect way to tell everyone what you’re about in 150 characters, so make it snappy. To really push the boat, try and work with different brands and create sponsored posts, or tag relevant accounts that could get you featured and introduced to a bigger audience.
Stories have proven to be a really popular method of engagement as you can use interactive stickers to find out what your followers want. You can upload videos over 1 minute long to your feed called IGTV, and also Instagram Reels, where users can post up to 1 minute long videos that will show on your feed and also in the new Reels section.
At Cygnus Music, your music will be made available on Instagram for Stories and Reels so users can choose your music for their own content, which is more exposure for you!
Another great feature is livestreaming, this allows you to have actual conversations with your followers in real time. This also creates a sense of exclusivity as you have to be watching the livestream as it happens, you can’t rewatch it afterwards unless the artist chooses to save it and post to their feed. Instagram Badges is a feature that can be purchased during a livestream. This pins a heart next to your name, any comments or questions will be highlighted to the artist, and your name will appear on a list visible to the artist for 90 days.
NEW CONTENT: PRO TECHNIQUES ON INSTAGRAM REELS
Facebook (Meta) is the world’s most popular social media platform, so it is essential to use it to your advantage. It began its journey as a social networking site, which is predominantly what it is still used for to this day. Very quickly ‘Pages’ was launched, enabling brands, celebrities and companies to create facebook pages for people to follow and keep up to date with them. It has become a very successful way of promoting yourself as an artist and building a following. There are some new and cool features that can make you stand out from the crowd.
There is a cool feature called “Sponsored Stories” which allows you to promote your business through word of mouth recommendations that appear on your friends newsfeeds. Click here to learn more about Sponsored Stories.
In Facebook there is a tool called “Meta Business Suite”, this is a subsection of the site that allows you to create adverts for your business, optimise your ad campaigns and also monitor their success so you can tailor your future ads. When creating adverts you should use multimedia to make them more eye-catching, and you should keep your writing short and snappy. Another great thing about Meta Business Suite is that you can tailor your demographics so you can control who you send your ads to, therefore making them more effective.
Once your ad campaigns have been completed you can look at the insights to see how successful they were. If more than one person is running your business page you can assign different admin roles.
- Insights Analyst: Views Insights.
- Advertiser: Views Insights and creates adverts.
- Moderator: View Insights, create adverts, send messages from the page and respond to and delete comments.
- Content Creator: View Insights, create adverts, send messages from the page, respond to and delete comments, create posts, edit the page and add apps.
- Manager: View Insights, create adverts, send messages from the page, respond and delete comments, create posts, edit the page, add apps and manage the admin roles.
Creator Studio is a great tool to help you effectively manage your page, posts, content and monetisation. You can post all your content from the Studio and it will give you basic insights on how your posts are doing. There is a management system so you can filter through your content to find specific posts and streamline all your engagement to one place for easy access.
It’s from here that you apply for your content to be monetised. Once approved, you can manage your payout settings, view statements, and manage and promote your subscriptions and ad block lists.
Right’s Manager is a customisable and really useful tool that is available in the Studio. It is designed to help creators take control of their content. It helps you manage when, where and how your content is being shared. Once you upload your content it is put into a reference library where Rights Manager scans it and finds anything that matches on Facebook and Instagram. Once detected you can decide whether to block, monitor, or get credit for it through an ownership link. You can also add trusted partners which stops them from matching to your reference files.
Facebook Pixel is a great tool for making the most out of your ad campaign budgets. You add Pixel to your website and your ad campaigns and it takes the jobs that you normally do in Ad Manager and it does it all for you.
It tracks users’ interaction with your website both on and off Facebook and then refines your ad campaigns and directs them towards more targeted markets for a more successful campaign.
TikTok is a video sharing platform that launched in 2016. It became increasingly popular following the shut down of the video sharing app Vine. Users can upload videos up to 60 seconds long and edit them to add music, effects, images, filters and more. There is a wide variety of content available on TikTok. Even though it can be used by everyone to create pretty much anything, Tik Tok is an interesting platform for musicians to utilise for their success.
Trends are the most success driven and influential aspects of TikTok, it is vital to keep an eye on what songs, sounds, and content is trending, this can be found on the Discovery page. There is also a “For You Page“ which showcases the latest popular content. From here you can tailor your own content so there is a better chance of it going viral. Alternatively you can cover, remix and duet with trending songs, exposing you and your music to a much wider audience. Dueting is a feature on TikTok that allows you to create content that includes someone else’s.
An example of this is:
After looking into the trends you should start uploading your own content. Your music needs to be TikTok friendly. The lyrics need to be catchy and easy to lip sync to, and the beat should be fun and can be isolated and used for a short clip. The great thing about TikTok is that once you have uploaded your content, the music will become a ‘sound’ which is available for all other creators to use.
Challenges are another really fun way to get your music out there. Sounds are the main motivation for the success and popularity of challenges. Do your research, and see what sort of challenges are created from different genres of music. For example, create a fun dance that is easy to follow, or encourage fans to explore their own creativity to showcase alongside your music.
You can also use hashtags in TikTok but they are used slightly differently in that they will categorise your posts, so make sure you’re using accurate hashtags. Less is more.
Our last key tip is consistency. TikTok is fast paced and has a high turnover, so to really become successful and stay that way, you should be posting 3 to 5 times a day.
YouTube is one of the leading social media platforms in the world and is a brilliant tool for promotion, generating revenue and fan engagement. There are many features on YouTube that you can use to your advantage.
The following tips are basic ways to make your channel more discoverable
- Enable channel recommendations: this allows YouTube to suggest your channel to new viewers.
- Use YouTube tags: hashtag keywords and relevant topics.
- Clear and concise video titles: your video titles should be fun and relevant to your content.
- Link your YouTube channel on all other platforms: direct traffic to your YouTube channel as this platform is the most successful way to earn revenue as an artist.
YouTube’s Partner Program (YPP) is a tool on YouTube that allows creators to acquire a wide variety of resources and also enables you to make money from your content. You can navigate all of this in the YouTube Studio. It also gives you insights on your video performance and engagement so you can see what sort of content is making the most money and what your audience is receiving well.
Not everyone has access to this tool so in order to boost your chances you really need to dedicate yourself to regularly uploading and creating quality content.
In order to be eligible for the YPP you need to meet YouTube’s guidelines, these are:
- Have more than 4000 valid public watch hours within the last 12 months.
- Have more than 1000 subscribers.
- Have a good relationship with YouTube.
- Be in a country where YPP is available.
- Have a linked AdSense account.
The main way to make money is by enabling ads through the monetisation tab in the YouTube Studio. Sponsors pay YouTube to put their ads on videos, and every time an ad gets clicked, YouTube gets paid. If you take part in the YPP, YouTube takes a cut of roughly 55% and you also get paid. The ads shown on your videos are tailored to your audience demographics so as to increase the chances of the ad getting clicks.
Once you are part of the YPP you can go a step further and become an Official Artist Channel which collects all your content from your different channels and puts it all together in one. It will automatically catalogue your music into 2 sections, the Album section and the Official Music Video section. These 2 sections are also automatically made into playlists. With OAC you can have your content organised, you can choose what you want to be highlighted and you can directly engage with your audience.
In order to become an OAC you must meet further requirements:
- Own a YouTube channel that represents an artist or band
- Have at least three official releases on YouTube that have been delivered and distributed by a label or music distributor
- Have no policy violations on your channel
Also one of the following:
- Work with a YouTube Partner Manager
- Be part of the YouTube Partner Programme
- Your channel is part of a label network that works with a Partner Manager
Another great way of boosting your views per visitor is to create video playlists, which automatically play selected videos one after another without the viewer having to do anything. This would work well with music videos, a behind the scenes series, or cover videos. Create playlists that are grouped into topics and your followers will be able to access them from your profile.
YouTube Annotations and YouTube End Cards are graphics and text boxes that you can insert during and at the end of your videos which viewers can click on and it will link them to a different site or video. It is a good way to drive traffic to your website, other social media pages and other content.
Channel membership is another thing you can enable from the Studio. It is a paid subscription that gives your followers more perks than all viewers. For example, they get a public membership badge in all comments and live chats, they have access to members only posts and live chats, custom emojis, and more. You can set different member levels so the more expensive memberships have access to more perks.
Super Chat and Super Stickers are more ways to monetise your channel. These features are available through the YPP. They allow your viewers to purchase featured messages which stand out from the rest and can even pin them to the top. This is exclusively for use during live steams.
Snapchat is a multimedia messaging app where once messages are opened they are deleted and cannot be seen again. You can also post Stories that your friends can see which are visible for 24 hours. This is a fun app to use to engage with your audience and create a sense of exclusivity as your posts will only be seen for 24 hours. Snapchat is not often the first social media app musicians use to promote their music, however there are ways to use this app to your advantage.
- On average, 306 million people use Snapchat every day.
- Snapchat reaches 75% of millennials and Gen Z.
- On average, Snapchatters spend over 30 minutes on Snapchat every day.
In order to really make the most out of this app you need to become a Snapchat Creator.
Having a Creator account comes with a number of perks:
- Subscribe button for fans
- Subscriber count
- Story, Lens and audience insights
- Public story that is separate from your ‘My Story’
- Add a website to your profile
- Chat button
- Story notifications
- Manage and assign roles
There are certain things you need to do to be able to upgrade your account from a standard account to a Creator account.
The first thing is to create a Lens using a free tool called the Lens Studio. A Lens is a filter that can be applied to your camera that transforms your pictures. You can get Lenses that change your face, or you can get Lenses that change the world around you. Snapchat will give you a variety of preset Lenses, but you can search through many more by looking in the Community Lens page.
Some Lens include a scan function where you press and hold the screen and it will scan what your camera is viewing and bring up prompted Lenses. There are even Lenses that invite your friends to interact, chat and play. Creating your own Lens is a fun way to engage with your audience and get some free publicity. You can also create Geofilters, which are Lens associated with a place or an event, so if you have an upcoming gig, or album launch, you can create a Geofilter for that.
If you post consistently and keep your content fresh and interesting you will find you get better engagement and success. Most people find success on Snapchat through finding their niche and working with it to build a community. Once your posts are consistently getting over 50,000 views you will likely be emailed by Snapchat, inviting you to become a verified account.
Snapchat Ads are a great way to promote yourself and your music. They are full screen ads that can be multimedia, and you can insert links that will directly send viewers to your site. Ads can be up to 3 minutes long but it is recommended that they only take a few seconds due to the nature of the app.
You can make Story Ads, which are a series of ads all in quick succession. Product ads allow you to upload a catalogue of products or services which viewers can shop from. You can create ads from the Snap Ad Manager and tailor your campaign and demographics.You can start advertising on Snapchat from $5 a day. You can set your daily budget and this will tailor the potential of your campaigns.
The Spotlight feature is a tab that is dedicated to promoting viral short videos on Snapchat. People can like and share your Snap, however, it doesn’t display your name and viewers can’t comment. To submit your snaps, just select “Spotlight” in “Send To”.
You can keep up to date with your submission by looking in your profile. Spotlight snaps must be video, cannot sell products, and must be appropriately hashtagged; they must be original and meet the community guidelines.
As social media has become more and more popular in recent years, there are some people who have built a large following and maintain a reputation for being experts on certain topics, such as music, fashion, makeup, comedy, and so on. Though they are called Influencers, their reliability can be questionable as most lack any real qualifications or experience in the field they are talking about, which means they are not very successful in influencing their audiences. That being said some influencers are qualified and experienced in their fields and can be very educational.
They usually dedicate their social media presence to their chosen topic and it becomes a resource for others to gain knowledge and inspiration for their own passions. Through their reputation, regular posting, and interactive content, influencers can draw in large audiences and persuade them to try products, brands and services that they believe are new and relevant.
This is where working with influencers can be really beneficial.
Look for influencers who specialise in music, even in your specific genre or even influencers that are not involved in music directly but has a shared audience demographic, and reach out to them to see if they would be interested in promoting your brand in exchange for something exclusive. The exposure to a large audience will help drive sales and attention towards you.
The term A.I or Artificial Intelligence has been bandied about for a long time within the music industry. Despite the constant “terrors” that it will “kill” the music business, it does provide itself as a useful tool. Rather than view A.I as a replacement, it’s important to view it as something that can significantly aid your music career.
First of all, if you’re unaware, it’s important to create an understanding of what A.I is. In a general sense, A.I systems are designed to take in and interpret data and make/create decisions. The systems that use A.I aim to replicate human abilities such as perceiving, reasoning and learning . With this in mind, Cygnus Music are going to show some of our favourite tools to help aid in your music marketing plans.