When it comes to promoting your music independently in 2023, there are so many areas to cover. Noisehive's Gemma Dunsmore has acquired the experience promoting the music of her band This Space Is Ours and is here to break it down in this guide.
Promoting your releases is an unavoidable task if you aspire to make a profitable career in music. The music industry has grown along with the internet, resulting in independent artists having more opportunities than ever before to promote their own releases without having the backing of a major label and a big budget. Of course, making great music should be the primary focus. But along with having a tight, well-written, and professionally produced, mixed, and mastered piece of music, there are a considerable number of things you can do to independently promote your music in 2023.
1. Establish an engaging social presence.
Social media is an incredibly powerful tool that all independent artists should be utilizing. A social media marketing strategy that is well-executed and consistent can be extremely effective in helping you reach a larger audience. Developing and maintaining an engaging presence across Instagram, Facebook, TikTok and Twitter is essential. Even less obvious platforms such as Snapchat can be valuable too.
Social media for artists is all about captivating content and creating a solid visual brand. Keep your social media handles consistent as best you can to make it easier for people to find you and put multiple link landing pages (Feature FM, LinkTree etc.) in your bios. This will allow your followers to find your music and anything else you want to showcase in just one click. There are endless amounts of advice out there on how to manage your social channels, and things are always changing on every platform, so it is important to stay up to date.
2. Identify your audience & focus on your niche.
It’s important to market your music to the right audience, therefore knowing your niche as well as how to exploit it can make all the difference. In today’s music culture there are countless amounts of thriving subcultures that exist in all corners of the world.
Utilizing the many different artist services (Spotify for Artists, Apple for Artists, etc.) features is one way you can identify your audience and niche while unlocking new potential for engagement. You can then find the venues, communities and fans that are involved with that niche and focus your efforts on winning them over. Niches also don’t always have to be defined by genre. If your music has a more widespread appeal, you can always start locally. People generally want to see an artist from their city succeed, so take advantage of this mentality.
3. Get playlisted.
As a modern-day artist, you can’t afford to ignore streaming platforms and playlisting. Curated playlists across Spotify, Apple Music, Deezer and other platforms are extremely popular, reaching hundreds of millions of listeners across the globe and racking up billions of streams. Not only is this great for awareness of your release but also for royalty earnings.
Being placed on algorithmic playlists such as Spotify’s Discover Weekly can increase your stream count even more significantly. Ask us about pitching your release to curated and algorithmic playlists.
4. Acquire press & blog coverage.
Music blogs and magazines are still a powerful form of media, being consumed by thousands of readers every day. Whether it’s through mainstream magazines or niche blogs and webzines, getting your music featured by music publications can help build hype and give you the credentials to take your career up a level. Hiring a professional PR executive to handle your campaign is usually the best way to get decent coverage as it can allow you to reach bigger outlets that you may not have normally been able to get in contact with. Unfortunately, this isn’t always possible for new artists with a limited budget.
Do-it-yourself PR is always a great option for artists without a large budget, but you must make sure that you approach bloggers and journalists in the right way. The first step is to create a strong and brief electronic press kit (EPK) that includes an artist bio, photos, music videos, your music, notable moments and contact information. When sending out your EPK to publications, focus on niche music blogs within your genre. Look at other artists that are similar to you and seek out where they have been featured for ideas.
5. Play live & make it memorable.
The most invaluable way to connect with music fans has always been through gigs and tours. In modern times, the music industry has become so saturated that just doing this is no longer enough, you must be able to make a lasting impression as well. To do this, your stage presence has to be on point and the set itself has to be more than just great music performed on stage. This is something that can be worked on during band practice by going over every detail. This includes how you will interact with each other, how you will interact with the audience, what you will wear, and the best possible set list order.
Get booked at nearby venues, play the best set you possibly can, and you’ll quickly gain new fans as well as create impactful connections with the fans you already have. Once you’ve built up a following in the local scene, you can then head out on the road and showcase your live show to a national audience and one day even an international audience. It takes a lot of hard work to tour and play gigs night after night but with a killer live show, the rewards will speak for themselves.
If you have any questions, feel free to reach out to the Noisehive team – firstname.lastname@example.org