Since the launch of the first social networking site- SixDegrees in 1997, there has been an emergence of loads of social media platforms which musicians have taken advantage of to promote themselves as artists.
YouTube being one of the most populated social networking sites with about 30million active users and 5billion videos watched per day, is the reason why using YouTube for your music promotion is something you should definitely add to your music marketing strategy.
A lot of music artists are still in the dark about all they can do with YouTube and don’t use it to promote their music in the same way they would use Instagram, Facebook and Twitter.
Youtube has made it very easy for musicians to spread awareness about their music, but with the high amount of videos being posted on the platform every day (5billion videos per day according to the 2019 statistics) pulling people’s attention in different directions and the competition from similar artists also pulling attention to them, the quality of your content is becoming more important than the number of followers you have and this is the same for all the social media platforms.
HOW TO PROMOTE YOUR MUSIC ON YOUTUBE.
I’m going to be giving some tips on promoting your music on YouTube, showing both organic and paid things to do. I’m also going to be listing some mistakes artists make on Youtube.
1. Have a professional looking YouTube channel;
You should have a professional looking YouTube channel. This makes you look more official, authentic, and real and helps you gain more subscribers.
Your YouTube channel should have the following;
- A name that corresponds to your stage name. Do not add “Official” or pseudo-“VEVEO”.
- Your professional looking profile photo/avatar
- Your channel’s banner related to your brand.
- A playlist to organize your content
- Links to your social media profiles and your website
- A short bio or description that summarizes what visitors can expect to see on your channel
- Eye-catching customized thumbnails for each of your videos
- A customized URL for your music project example; youtube.com/user/newsong
2. Post valuable content on a regular basis;
You should write songs and post contents that evoke emotional response from the people that listen to them and watch them.
Songs that have a good beat or tend to get stuck in people’s head are usually shared the most, meaning they could go viral.
With the numerous amounts of daily posts, keeping attention on you is difficult. There is always going to be a new video that takes the attention away from you.
That is why posting consistently is necessary. Don’t leave your channel stagnant. Continually post content to keep your subscribers engaged. Posting content does not mean expensive videos that are directed by… produced by… or filmed by… and you don’t have to write new songs weekly.
Think of other smaller creative projects that you could make and share with your subscribers.
I’ve made a list of few video content ideas;
a. Behind the scene footage;
Like sound check short clip for a big show, behind the scene footage from filming your next video, a short clip of you in the studio recording.
b. Chats in the car;
You could record short talks or interviews with a buddy while running errands, talk about upcoming shows, other things in your life.
c. Share music tips and experiences;
A great way to earn the following of other musicians is to share tips on what you’ve learnt on the long run of your career. Share your mistakes, failures and how you overcame them.
d. Meaning behind your songs, what inspired you;
Tell them the stories and meanings behind each song, what inspired you in writing them. Then pair the clips of you performing the song and you’ll have a really compelling video.
e. Videos of your band practice
f. Interviews with other musicians
g. Share what you are doing;
You could be writing a new song, cooking, working out, doing a fitting, whatever it is you choose to show them. Your fans would definitely enjoy knowing what you are doing.
h. Frequently asked questions;
Lot of fans will enjoy asking you questions if given the chance to. Give them a platform to submit their questions about you, your career, your music or your personal life, allow them to get to know you. Answer these questions in videos and post them on your channel.
3. Post regularly;
Consistently upload videos, this sets a schedule for you and helps you gain subscribers and fans. They will know you post one or two videos weekly or every two weeks and the specific day you post them. With this, they can easily see that your account is active.
More so, it keeps your subscribers entertained, interested and excited for more.
Youtube favors content creators who post on a regular basis. If you add new content frequently, your videos may get listed in the ”suggested” section, this greatly increases the traffic to your channel.
4. Build relationships and work with Youtube influencers and other artists;
Working with influencers who have lots of subscribers on Youtube and a big following on other social media platforms is a great way to create awareness about your music.
They are called influencers because they have gained a lot of influence in their niche.
You can reach out to them by sending them a direct message on Youtube or through other social media platforms.
You can also reach out and team up with other artists in your genre & style and share fans.
Start locally with people you actually know then branch out as you grow. Reach out to people who might want to collaborate with you and artists who might want to co-write a song and perform it with you.
5. Your videos should be attention grabbing;
Internet users have very low patients, they decide within the very first few seconds if they want to continue watching a video or move on to something else.
The first few seconds of your videos should be captivating and attention grabbing. A great way to draw people in is by putting the major hook or the most exciting part of the video at the very start so it captivates people’s minds.
6. Your videos should be search engine optimized;
SEO (Search Engine Optimization) is simply using phrases and words that people search for on search engines like Google so when they search, your videos can show on search results.
This greatly drives a lot of traffic to your channel and increases awareness. But it isn’t as easy as it sounds because there is a lot of competition out there. Here are some few tips;
a. Using keywords;
Remember that SEO for everyone isn’t the same as SEO for you as musicians. For starters, your stage name or your brand name is your major keyword.
Your keyword should be in your title and description.
b. Your titles and descriptions;
Make sure that the title of each video is short, 60-65 characters max is a good target range. YouTube cuts of the title at 100 characters.
Besides, it is likely that 80% of your viewers will be watching your videos from a mobile device, so you’d want to make your channel mobile friendly.
Avoid click-baiting – using deceitful title and thumbnail that doesn’t relate in any way to the contents of the video just in a bid to entice people to watch your videos.
Create a description that correctly says what a video is about and use tags to further help the description.
7. YouTube Premiere
YouTube premiere is a nice way to get audience glued to your channel. This feature is just like a movie premiere.
YouTube premiere lets you schedule a video for upload and create buzz around that video during the wait time with a shareable watch page.
Just scheduling a video won’t alert your fans that a new video is dropping soon. With premiere, your subscribers get a notification of the video drop date and time making them more likely to tune in.
Remember to always share information about your premiere across all your social media platforms, encourage them to share to their friends and followers as well.
Create a buzz and make sure the content of the video is worth the buzz.
8. Add cards and end screens to your top videos
Cards are a great way to encourage fans to watch other videos of yours.
YouTube cards are the interactive cards you see in YouTube videos, usually at the end, that lets creators share clickable links to relevant content.
Cards can be seen on both mobile and desktop screens.
They allow you include a custom image, titles and call to action texts. Add cards to your top 10 videos or top 2 if you are just starting out on YouTube.
You can display any of the following in your cards;
- Link to your website
- Merchandise for sell
- Fan funding
They can be used for pre-recorded and live-streamed videos.
How to add cards to your videos;
- Sign into your YouTube video manager
- Click “edit” on the video you want to add a card to
- Click the “cards” button in the top navigation bar
- Click on “add cards” twice to open the creation window for the card type you want to add. Enter a valid URL applicable to that card type.
- Upload an image, enter a title and description text
- Click “create card” and push the cards to the time you want them to appear while the main video is being watched.
- Use SEO to help your fans find different ways to spend money on you.
A video can have up to 5 cards and the cards can be edited and deleted anytime.