Promoting music as an independent artist can be disheartening and confusing for new artists trying to find their place in the indie marketplace. This guide will help you navigate the best ways to make an impression and help you to avoid some of the common pitfalls artists stumble into when trying to reach streaming milestones, boost sales and increase fan engagement.
How to Promise Indie Music: 5 Helpful Industry-Recommended Tips
- Build Your Brand Before Distributing Music
Image is everything when it comes to promoting independent music. It gives potential fans and useful industry contacts the chance to know who you are as an artist before hitting play on your music or working through a lengthy bio.
Your artist photos, cover art, press kits, website and social media feeds should all reinforce the image that you want to put out into the world. Always stay consistent. There’s nothing wrong with the DIY method when creating your artwork, artist photos and website, but it is worth remembering that if you want to appeal to professionals, you have to look…professional.
- Create a PR Plan
Your list of industry contacts will be your best asset in promoting music as an independent artist. Weeks before the release, try to drum up momentum on your new release by giving exclusive access to radio stations; if you’ve got a music video, choose a blog or magazine to run the premiere. Playlists and getting your music distributed on all major streaming platforms should not be overlooked.
If paying for PR isn’t feasible for this release, you can contact the blogs, playlist curators, radio stations, magazines and promotors yourself. It might be harder to pique interest as an unestablished artist, but with the perfect pitch that proves why you’re a good fit and being discerning with who you contact, you have got a good chance of gaining some traction with your new release.
- Get Involved in Your Local Scene
The internet may provide a wealth of opportunities for exposure but playing it local at the beginning of your career can help you build valuable connections. You will get the opportunities to share a fan base, get snapped by gig photographers, make an impression on other members of the industry that happen to be there; if you are lucky, there will be a live review in it for you. See who similar bands are getting booked and by and take the time to reach out to them, explaining why you think they’ll love your sound too.
Not only is playing live a great way to get exposure, but it can also provide a valuable income. Just be wary of scammy pay to play promotors that are more interested in lining their own pockets than helping grassroots artists thrive.
- Stay Social
Social media is very much a necessary evil for independent artists; the music industry builds thriving communities with like-minded people, give the people on your level a chance to connect with you on your posts. Posts about tours and releases are essential but it is crucial to keep your fans engaged between big announcements.
Create regular posts on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and TikTok that remain consistent with your brand and show how much you appreciate your fans. If you only have a small online following, it may be a little frustrating to get low engagement at first, but your time spent will pay off in the long run.
- Create a Viral-Worthy Music Video
With enough creativity at your disposal, it doesn’t matter if you have thousands to splash on an official music video or a £50 budget to work with. Videos and other visual media content are great for social media content; even if your track isn’t a hit on the radio, a viral-worthy video is your chance to blow up online. Good music videos do one of two things, they either explore a deeper meaning in the song that isn’t conveyed in the lyrics or find a quirky way to connect with the listener.
- Build Credibility with Bloggers and Journalists
Even if your sound isn’t big in your hometown, the internet provides international opportunities to connect with niche communities. Your gateway to niche communities can come through getting featured on blogs and magazines that are always looking for the next big thing in their specified genre. Always respect a blog or magazine’s genre preferences; you’re not going to win anyone over by ignoring their submission preferences.
Submit Indie Music to A&R Factory
A&R Factory has become one of the top 10 UK artist repertoire services for independent artists looking for exposure. Since our 2012 inception, we have featured thousands of independent artists on our platform. Submit indie music to our blog, or get in contact with a member of our PR team to hear how we can do more to help you reach your goals and milestones.