SEO should always be an important marketing strategy for musicians — but thanks to the uncertain times we’re going through in 2020, it has become more important than ever. That’s especially true for “DIY musicians,” who are trying to be seen and heard on their own.
Most musicians make the majority of their income from touring and playing live shows. Unfortunately, thanks to the impact of the Coronavirus pandemic, playing live in front of an audience has been put on hold for the majority of 2020. Most concerts and festivals have even been postponed to 2021.
So, if you’re a full-time musician, you’ll have to get creative when it comes to generating income. One of the best ways to do that is to start looking at yourself and your music as a brand. That means you need to know what you represent, have a website, use social media, and stay consistent with your fans — both online and in person.
If you’re a musician struggling to keep your finances up this year, let’s look at why SEO is vital for your career and what you can do to give it a boost.
Marketing for Musicians
Marketing is about more than just trying to get people to listen to your music. While that’s important, your greater focus needs to be on getting attention. Remember, most of your revenue will typically come from playing live. Even if you aren’t able to do that right now, you’ll eventually hit the road again. So, you want people to be interested enough in your brand to come see you, not just download your music online.
In order to consistently capture the attention of people online, your digital marketing strategy needs to include:
Regular emails to those who opt-in
Social media posts
Interaction on social media with fans
Signing up for streaming services (like Spotify)
Collaborating with other musicians/influencers
You can also promote your music and your brand by bridging the gap between live shows and SEO. One of the best ways to do that is with video. Search engines love video (especially with backlinks!) and so does social media. You can play your music by hosting a livestream or posting individual songs to a YouTube account or your website. Videos are great for social sharing and they can help you to seem more approachable to fans.
The Importance of What You Say
As a musician, you might already be a bit of a wordsmith if you write your own lyrics. So, take that expertise and apply it to your SEO strategy. Any marketing agency will tell you that “content is king” when it comes to boosting your digital brand.
Content marketing is important for every industry. As a musician, you can use it to reach new audiences, and form a better connection with your current fans. Content marketing focuses on the strategic creation of content via a blog or other platform that is relevant and worthwhile to your target audience. When you’re a musician, that means creating carefully-crafted content that will appeal to your fans or anyone who might be interested in your music and what you have to say. This might include “how-to” blog posts, informational posts, and so on, that revolve around keywords in your industry, such as “music,” “live music,” “musician,” and so on.
Your content marketing strategy should include things like researching keywords to determine what your audience might be looking for. But, don’t just create content that feels unnatural because you’re stuffing it with specific words or phrases. Now, more than ever, people are craving connection from their favorite brands. Be personable with your content. Use your voice, and it will connect with your audience on a more authentic level. Search engines take quality content into account, too.
What Should Be On Your SEO Checklist?
Let’s face it, you probably didn’t get into music because you were thinking about marketing or SEO or modern digital advertising. If you’re still struggling with how to improve your SEO, make yourself a checklist about some of the best practices. It will remind you to constantly work on your marketing efforts to build your brand and reach more listeners/fans.
You can stay simple or make your checklist as in-depth as you would like. But, some of the most important SEO-boosting tips to keep in mind include:
Having a strong website and optimizing your content
Link to your website from all of your social media accounts
Create a Google Brand account
Create videos of your music for YouTube, your website, and social media
Develop a list of keywords associated with your brand and music that people might look for
Music marketing is necessary. While it may not be your top skill, it’s something you need to invest yourself in, because it’s an ongoing process if you want to be successful. If you only promote your music instead of your entire brand, you could be missing out on new fans, listeners, and revenue. If you’re not able to tour or play live shows right now, it’s the perfect time to learn more about music marketing, SEO, and how you can build a greater digital presence for your music.