If you’re a musician or band, and you want to book more gigs, get more exposure, and put yourself on the road to success, you should know what an EPK, meaning electronic press kit, is. So what is an EPK?
Today, music has gone fully digital. Instead of producing vinyl, every artist has to turn their sights to music streaming platforms.
With even more artists entering the music industry, the need to stand out as a musician has become as important as ever, especially when it comes to more populated genres.
In the past, the task of standing out as a musician was mostly done through the use of sheer musical skill, which eventually rendered the quest of finding success in music as one that was a survival of the most skilled. Nowadays, however, being skilled and talented as a musician is no longer sufficient to stand out and be heard well enough to develop a fulfilling career.
Attaining success as a musician nowadays boils down to a variety of crucial factors that each have their own significance in turning home musicians into international stars. Although there may be many factors to consider as an aspiring musician, an airtight marketing plan is one particular aspect (aside from talent) that has proven to be essential in attaining success.
Why most musicians end up overlooking the marketing aspects
Admittedly, the main reason musicians end up overlooking their marketing plan is that it doesn’t sound as appealing or impactful as practising, making connections, and performing. A marketing plan, however, holds the key for any artist to go far beyond what they’re currently doing because it gives them the leverage they need to present their content to a bigger audience.
Today, promoting your brand as a musician, getting your music out there, and making your presence known by implementing a marketing plan is essential for attaining immeasurable success.
What you need to consider when building a marketing plan
When it comes to building a marketing plan for your music career, it’s essential to keep in mind that there’s no one solution that works for every musician. A marketing plan can be done in a way that best fits your needs. At the same time, however, it is essential to consider a few key elements when putting an effective marketing strategy together.
If you’re keen on making an effective marketing plan that works, here are a few essential elements to consider throughout the entire building process:
1. A proper introduction about yourself
No matter how hard you work on your Facebook ads or Soundcloud profile content, all your efforts can easily be rendered unusable if you don’t have a proper self-introduction as an artist. With a proper self-introduction, you’ll be able to clearly state who you are, what you do, and why people should listen to you and watch your shows, which is essentially the foundation of your entire marketing plan.
2. A set of realistic Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) and goals
Accountability is one of the most effective tools that you’ll have as a musician who is trying to make a career and what better way to keep yourself in check than a few KPIs and goals? Setting a few goals to paint a clearer picture of where you see yourself in the next five to ten years will help steer your efforts in the right direction.
3. A clear knowledge of your target audience
Building a marketing plan as a musician without knowing your target audience is like playing darts with a blindfold. You can try as much as you want, but you’re probably not going to hit your target. Clarifying your target audience is an effective way to ensure that you know who you’re making music for, and it is essential that you take the right steps in building your marketing campaigns as well.
Building a marketing plan as a musician with the right set of elements is a guaranteed way to achieve your long-term goals and establish yourself as a musician. By keeping the three key elements mentioned when putting your marketing plan together, you’ll get where you need to be an artist within a shorter amount of time!
If you are looking to improve your music marketing strategies in the United Kingdom, get in touch with us today to see how we can help.
Whether you are aiming to be the front act for a famous band at a local show or seeking coverage from a popular music blog, you will need a well-written email pitch to succeed in your plans.
What’s new on Spotify? Marquee, an advertising initiative that allows music labels and artists to promote their music on the streaming platform – at a price, of course. It’s 55 cents a click, but Spotify recommends a minimum ad buy of $5,000. For that price, you can expect to increase your stream count to at least 9,000 streams, or 9,000 potential listeners, over a seven-day period. At least, that’s what Spotify says.
Does Spotify’s Marquee tool mean that streams are now for sale? What if you don’t have the money for it as a struggling independent artist? How could this change the way listeners engage with the streaming platform? Let’s take a closer look at Marquee and what it means for artists, labels and listeners alike.
What Spotify Marquee offers labels and artists
Launched in 2019, Marquee is an ad system that lets artists and labels spend marketing money to “drive incremental streams” for their music. So how does it work? In a nutshell, you pay, and your music gets some pretty sweet exposure on the platform as full-screen pop-up recommendations for listeners. There’s no upper limit on how much you pay for promotional placements, so you can spend as much as you want.
While Spotify already offers artists and labels in-platform advertising, the streaming service says Marquee is a more effective tool, and early testers have agreed.
Spotify Marquee is said to have a wider reach, which means more listeners. The paid ads are shown not only to free users but subscribers as well. The click-through rate currently stands at 21.7 percent, plus users who receive a Marquee ad were found to stream 17 percent more than those who don’t.
Despite this, Spotify stresses that artists are not paying for streams. Spotify’s Senior Product Marketing Manager, Charleton Lamb, clarifies that listeners have the choice to engage or not.
What it offers listeners
You can expect to listeners to groan at yet another ad from Spotify, but according to Rolling Stone, it doesn’t appear to be that bad – the platform “will not bombard listeners with pop-up ads” each time you open the app. And if you’re more of a classical music listener, you won’t be getting Despacito pop-ups. Hopefully.
According to Spotify, the Marquee recommendations will still be based on a listener’s music taste, so the notifications will only be from artists they follow or frequently listen to. And probably from similar artists, if Marquee really promises a wider reach.
Spotify also puts a limit on the number of ads listers see, such as a single ad in a day or two in a week. The Marquee notifications, captioned “Brand New Music For You,” can be turned off if you’re a premium user and don’t want pop-ups any day of the week.
Concerns about Marquee
Rolling Stone notes two primary concerns about Spotify’s new marquee ad tool. First, Marquee makes the music business more consolidated. If you have the resources – say, the marketing money of the major label you’ve signed with – then you can afford to pay for play and get more listeners.
However, if you’re an independent artist who struggles to even earn $300 from streams, this means your music may have to stay in the background, away from the spotlight paid for by artists with means. Would you be willing to cough up (at least) $5,000 for a song or album promotion on Spotify?
The second concern is about Marquee’s cost-effectiveness. As with other ad tools, Marquee can’t really promise success in terms of getting more long-term listeners, unless everyone that receives the pop-up recommendations becomes instant fans. However, if your goal is simply to create awareness of your music, then Marquee sounds like a good tool for it.
What do you think of Spotify’s new ad tool? Share your thoughts!
Making it big in any industry depends a lot on sheer luck. However, along with luck, it’s also equally important to work hard, have determination, and use the right strategies.
The same goes for those belonging to the music industry.
If you’re an aspiring musician, your goal is to obviously get everyone out there to listen to your creations. The tactics you use in this regard become very important. While self-promotion platforms such as Promoly can aid you immensely in promoting your music, there are other aspects of the music marketing world you should know as well.
Let’s take a look at what it takes to have a comprehensive cheat sheet on music marketing.
How to Create a Successful Music Marketing Plan
Before you start making your marketing plan, there are certain questions you need to ask yourself.
These include questions such as whether you’re just starting out with an online presence and need to reach your audience, if you’re ready to head out on tour and sell tickets, whether you’re already on tour and need to sell more merch, if you want to double the size of your mailing list, or if you’re releasing a new album and need to generate awareness for it.
Here are some ways in which you can create an effective music marketing plan:
Define Your Audience
Knowing your audience is the first step in any marketing plan. It’s the audience that will help you succeed, therefore, knowing them well is of utmost importance. Find out which platform your fans like to use the most, be it Facebook, Instagram, or something else.
You will need to discover how to communicate with your fans effectively, and what to offer them in order to keep them coming back for more. Ask yourself questions about who your ideal fan is, because it’s this fan who will stay loyal to you, help you sell tickets, and buy your merch.
The questions you need to ask regarding your audience include the age and gender and location of your fans, what their personalities are like, what excites them apart from music, what’s their favourite social network, and so on.
Analyze the Market
Once you know what your audience is like, you will have to find out about the current music market. This entails exploring both locally as well as globally. An understanding of this will aid you in figuring out where you fit in and what are the unique aspects you can offer to your fans.
This department requires research as well. You need to explore which bands or musicians are the most popular at the moment, what is it they’re doing to engage with the fans, if the artists within your genre are touring successfully, and so on.
Create an Action Plan
Once you have some clear music marketing goals laid out, it’s time to think about how you’re going to achieve those goals. The components to include in your action plan are PR, advertising, content curation, touring, social media, networking, etc.
Try to approach all the goals on a monthly basis. Develop a spreadsheet where you can list down when you’re going to approach the goals respectively. This will give you a picture of all your PR efforts and how you plan on creating and executing content in the upcoming months.
In addition to making these plans, it’s also important to keep a track of how these strategies are working out. Some of the KPIs to consider include how many album sales happened through clicks on your mailing list in the current week and how that compares to the previous week, which sources on your website are leading the most to your store, etc.
Formulate a Budget
Much like any other industry, it takes time and money for your marketing efforts to grow and bring about results. Therefore, when you create your action plan, assign the necessary budget to each element so that you know just how much everything is going to cost. That way, you can be prepared and even tackle any sudden expenses that come your way.
What are the Best Music Marketing Platforms?
When it comes to music, self-promotion works wonders. If you’re looking to have all your promo campaigns in one place, Promoly is the platform to go for. It lets you view everything happening in real-time, and also helps you create stunning promo packages.
Some of the best music marketing platforms musicians can go for are as follows:
YouTube is obviously the first choice for any musician, both popular and new. With music being the most viewed category of video (27%), and people watching over 1 billion hours of YouTube videos every day, you really can’t go wrong with this music marketing platform.
2. Social Media Networks: Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter
We’re all aware of the fact that most of the people using social media are gathered and spread between Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram. Therefore, having a presence on each of these platforms is crucial for any musician.
Twitter has about 330 million monthly active users (MAU), it’s the place for most budding music journalists and influencers, and it helps you get a lot of word-of-mouth.
With a staggering 2.38 billion MAU, Facebook is the most used social media platform globally, and it’s where people discover your live videos. Instagram with its 1 billion MAU is the place where budding artists can generate a community and a loyal fan base.
All three platforms have a varying demographic. This is why your marketing campaigns should be different with respect to all the three platforms, depending on your target audience and the kind of content they like to see.
Controlling over 36% of the global streaming market, Spotify has 217 million monthly active users and is the most popular music streaming platform in the world. Whether you’re aiming for placement on the editorial or label-owned playlists depends on your marketing strategy.
Not only will this give you global exposure and help in transforming your career, you will also be featured by the third-party influencers. It’s digital platforms like Spotify that helped in driving the change and shifting the focus from albums to digital playlists. Therefore, using this game-changer should be a must on every musician’s list.
As you probably know, TikTok is the newest obsession in the world of music marketing. It lets you repurpose music and transform them into memes that you can share with your followers, and this is a trick most people seem to be loving these days.
With TikTok, users will be able to discover your music and create their content with it, which serves as a great word-of-mouth technique. They further share this content and it gets seen on other social media platforms that also has music lovers who appreciate your work.
It's a win-win situation.
TikTok is a social platform dedicated to sharing short-form videos. Musicians now have an incredible opportunity to expand their audience.
In this article, we’ll highlight three traits that we believe can help any aspiring musicians reach success.
How many unopened emails are currently in your inbox? 200? 600? Or perhaps, you’re on a few different mailing lists – 1,653 then? And that’s after doing some Gmail housekeeping!
We receive tons of emails day by day (105 billion emails are sent daily!), and a vast majority of them are never read.
People are being inundated with truckloads of information – as never before in history. Sadly we don’t have enough time or mental bandwidth to let it all seep in.
The probability that your email will be ignored is quite high – unless you can craft a masterful subject line.
Forty-seven percent of email recipients will open an email purely because of the subject line. And on the flip side, sixty-nine percent of email recipients will report an email as spam simply because of the subject line.
In other words, think of email subject lines as the first (and possibly the last) impression you’ll make on a reader.
In lots of ways, the subject line is even more relevant than the body of your email.
After all, sending an excellent music promo is insignificant if it never gets to meet the dance.
So, while writing your new music press releases, don’t take your subject lines for granted. The ideal subject line is short, descriptive, and makes the reader want to open your promo!
Are you a music promoter looking to develop into an email subject line writing Yoda?
There are a few different styles for generating jaw-dropping subject lines when sending promotional music to your mailing lists, let’s cover them below:
Active, well-organized people appreciate efficiency. Such readers want you to be brief and understandable with your subject lines since their time is a precious asset.
Make things easier for them by prioritizing relevant information when writing your subject lines. For example, ‘New release from Maverick Records, 4min’. This sort of subject line cuts to the chase quickly and lets the recipient know the intention of the email right away via its subject line.
Who doesn’t love a personal touch?
Taking the personalized route when writing subject lines, will help you engage your audience right from the start and quickly help your email stand out from the rest because there’s contextual relevancy that separates it from being a mass email.
Try to include the first name of the recipient, or other personal details such as recent downloads from your record label.
Why are infomercials effective? Because they create a sense of importance; requiring swift action.
People habitually respond to the likelihood of missing out on something, instead of promises of gaining something.
Similar effects can be used when writing your subject lines and including tags that demonstrate a sense of urgency can help with this. For example, including ‘[URGENT]’ in the promotional email subject line, or attaching a fear of missing out such as ‘Download this before midnight…’ may draw in recipients to opening the email.
The Clever and Catchy
A memorable subject line will stand out amid the scores of dull ones around it.
Humour can be tricky, though, and you must be careful not to alienate or confuse the reader.
However, if you are familiar with your audience, a witty joke will ensure that your email is opened and shared.
There’s a good reason why listicles have become so widespread: they work.
A list provides snappy, snackable content and builds curiosity.
Besides, including numbers in your email subject line causes the reader to focus, since our brains are instinctively attracted to digits.
The Short and Sweet
Because most mobile devices can only display five to six words of your subject line—and given that over forty-one percent of email campaigns today’s are opened on smartphones — brevity is critical.
Starting with a curious subject line will engage your audience immediately and generate immediate dialogue.
Try asking open-ended questions so that your reader cannot respond to them with a swift “no.”
We humans have an innate dread of losing out on anything. Hence, an email subject line that threatens scarcity (such as “hurry, while offer lasts”!) tends to perform well.
A how-to email subject line gives insight into the exact benefits your audience will discover if they open and read your email.
And provided that your “how-to” is helpful to the reader, open rates will soar.
The Sneak Peek
Everybody wants to be an early adopter or a trendsetter, so why not fuel that desire?
Let’s say you have a priceless opportunity, integrating sneak peeks and an exclusive into your email subject line is an easy guaranteed to boost your open rates.
While a lot of these tips seem simple, they’re tried and tested – but most importantly, rely on experimentation. The best way to figure out which of these works best (when sending promos) for your record label is to a/b test. Create two identical promos in Promoly and then adjust the subject lines. Once complete, create an A and B group then deliver a promo to each audience. Give it a good seven days and compare which audience had a higher open rate. Once you’ve worked out a formula, keep testing and you’ll see your open rate increase!