It has been established that we are in an age of EPs and single tracks.
Artistes like Joeboy, Fireboy, Oxlade, and your favourite artiste understand this fact and their careers have boomed off from a single track that was released at the beginning of their careers which has turned them to “King” among their fans and respective genre of music.
They don’t seem to be just okay with the fame they already have. It’s obvious that if they continue utilising the current promotion and advertising strategies merged with new ones as time goes on; these artists will further develop into legends.
“The potential of achieving all of that started from the potential of an exceptional single track.“
Note: An exceptional single track that was strategically released and promoted.
Dibehq has been in the music talent management business for a long time now. So, we understand the power of a single song.
Before The Single Track is Released And Promoted.
Know the type of track you are releasing;
Your single track doesn’t have to be a new song you just recorded (without the intention of adding it to an EP or using it as a lead on for an album). It can be a song you were featured in or one that you featured another artiste in; like the Naira Marley song mentioned as examples in these articles. It can be a strategic re-release of a song from an Album you’ve previously released.
Moreover, it could be that during your studio session, you did a recording that was awesome. Promote it or fortunately, you collaborated with another artiste, DJ, or producer; you can choose to release and promote the dopest song from that project. It could be your cover on another artist’s song like Falz (This is Nigeria) did with Childish Gambino’s “This Is America”.
“The single track could be a lead single from your forthcoming EP or a bonus track from your previously released EP or Album “
Note: one of the most important things is that the single track is produced with so much proficiency that it can further keep you in the sight of the audience.
Note; release singles that are not too long- 3 minutes at least. Also ensure that they do not contain too much vulgarity. As these factors have the determining power of affecting how people share your single track, that’s if it’s not banned. You don’t want that kind of image or reputation as an upcoming especially.
Remember that based on how long your song is and the language you use, your single track might not be allowed in some music distribution platforms. Also, some platforms might not accept the song as part of an EP or LP later on. These elements could also limit the kind of blogs, radio, or TV stations your single track is displayed, aired, or music video played on. Thereby limiting the effectiveness of your song promotion and the revenue you get in return.
The capability of Music Crew;
Quickly, it is important to note that the competence of your team (the inner circle) matters for the successful promotion of that single song. So starting off, you need to make sure the song you have selected for promotion is produced, recorded, and mixed to the best of your label’s or team’s abilities.
Artiste Mastery of Artistry;
Also, you as the artiste need to make sure the song displays to the maximum your prowess and mastery of your artistry. The level of your musical skill or talent will determine how the promoted song is received by the music communities around the world.
You and your team’s ability in the vocal dexterity, delivery, production, recording, and mixing will determine how successful this single track is.
“Team’s expertise in music promotion and advertising is not enough.“
How satisfying old and new fans are of the single song after freely downloading, streaming, or buying it will greatly determine how they react to your next single track promotion. Or your EP and Album as the case may be.
Read More; Oops! Things You Didn’t Know About Eps
You want to make sure it is of a “genius quality” or else you end up losing the loyalty of your fans(if the single track isn’t the first you will release). Low-quality single tracks can promotionally impact your own career negatively.
“Because now that this track doesn’t exceed the standard of the competition like the capability of the promotional strategy, it becomes hard to get people to even check out your next single song as they want to assume that it would be “wackier” than the previous singles.”
Promoting a song means a lot of people especially new are going to become freshly introduced to your musical ability. So, the first few seconds when they play your song tell if they will buy, stream, or even download it.
“Furthermore, promotion doesn’t mean everyone who sees the advert will buy the song.
Promotion and advertisement is simply publicity that informs or reminds people about (to listen to) it.”
Therefore, you might only get 10-20 maybe 50-100persons to buy, stream, and download your [first] single track. But, their satisfaction with what they hear is what will motivate them to tell friends and family members. And soonest before you know; “…you go be legend oh!” in Oxlade voice.
Additionally, promotion and adverts create awareness about you as an artist. Yes people seeing the song poster, online graphics, social media hype, interview: MTV Base, Trace, Soundcity,etc., Dibehq mentions, or the promotion of that (new) single track everywhere will eventually cause them to buy, stream, or download. That’s good!
Nonetheless, the greatest thing you need to know is that the competency of your team and your own proficiency is what will sustain the listening, and phone space the musical community will give or sacrifice for you including the success of that single track after downloads or streams.
So, do you think your song has been mastered and is of genius quality?
Great! You have selected the best single song from your portfolio. You are ready to go. But wait;
You are not the only artist who knows about the trending advantage of releasing a single track on SoundCloud, Amazon, iTunes, … So, it is not as simple as just uploading on the different distribution platforms
Have A Promotional Structure;
You need to “chillax” to draft and plan the groundwork on how you are going to do it.
“The promotional draft should be capable of hyping the song for at least two months before it is released.”
Moreover, having a promotional design or structure lets you decide on the platforms you will use to market the track and the resources you will need to execute the objective. For instance, if you are considering social media ads, you will need financial resources. If you are considering content marketing on your blogs or social media platforms, you would need to prepare beforehand catchy articles and text. You need to know which will go before the other and how long one would last before introducing the next advertising strategy. What kind of Visual would be used; artworks, graphics, etc. Who or how will they be produced?
Design A Distributive Technique;
Where, when, and how can your fans get your song on the different distribution strategies. How do you attract press attractions? Where fans get your song can determine how much you make from it and how to expand your music career!
If you decide to make your song available for free downloads, you should ensure that the very popular websites like just NaijaLoaded, TooXclusive, etc have the songs. Better still, you can create your own website (if you don’t have one already) so people can download the song for free there with the benefit of increasing your traffic and getting people to subscribe for newsletters. Via the subscription you have access to their emails which can be used in the future to promote your album or EPs. Most importantly, having your own website means you don’t have to pay the other websites to make your music available for free downloads.
Note: it is better to have your website running effectively, adequately updated, and upgraded before you decide to use the “your own website” strategy.
If you decide to make the song available solely for purchase and streaming; you need to consider the music distribution channel where you have more followers or one that can bring in more revenue. It’s not a bad strategy to have it on all music distribution platforms too. Like iTunes, Audiomack, SoundCloud, Spotify, etc.
“Another very wise move is to make your song available for free on one/two platforms and for sale on the other(s).”
Create Additional visuals For The Single;
Apart from the graphics and images to be used in promoting the song; it is even wiser to have already created the video to the single track before releasing it to the public or promoting it.
“Music experts have reported that 2020 is the year of music videos.”
Also, the music business is all about gaining and sustaining the attention of your audience. Although the attention is short span which explains why short length videos gain more streams and views on YouTube, IGTV, … than the 4 minutes long ones.
So, while the single track attracts the attention of the audience, the video of the song can further sustain it.
You can start with the release of 10-30seconds videos on IG, Facebook, etc. Which is then followed by a full video for the song. The most interesting and catchy part of the single track can be used to create the short length videos.
Note: it is more advisable to release the single track first before the music video. Dropping the music video first already gave them the feel both audio and visual meaning there isn’t much to anticipate as regards that single track.
After the points above have been taken care of, you should go ahead and release your single track.
But evaluate your plans again.
If you plan to drop an EP or Album not too long after the release of the single track; then you should consider a lead single or deeper dive. These are the two types of tracks that can be strategically used to prepare the mood of the fans for what’s coming. It also keeps you in the mind of the audience while perfecting the production, mixing, videos, photoshoot, marketing strategy of your forthcoming EPs, or Albums.
“When” your single track is released or promoted should be intelligently calculated and evaluated. This is what artists like Naira Marley used more than twice: during the time of preparing for last year’s world cup( Issa Goal ft Olamide) and at a time when he was trending (Yahoo boy ft Zlatan and Soapy [Inside life]). The timing was perfect for the song to be released and the music production and artist delivery was top notch. He did not leave us any choice but to make the song blow.
When the release is properly scheduled and the promotion is adjusted to the right time; you might even spend less to create awareness of the song.
In releasing and promoting a single track;
“it is important to practice the art of patience in the midst of your persistence. Because you can’t release the song twice. So you must ensure that the timing is right so you can have the best of results from your efforts in promoting it.”
After The Single Track Has Been Released And Promotion is Ongoing
Intelligently Invoking Emotions;
Another strategy is creating an emotional attachment to it. Teni got more listens for “Uyo Meyo” because of the publicity that she wrote the song for her late father. D’banj’s “Everything is ok” single track got more attention because he said it was in memory of his late baby and to celebrate the newborn child he just had. Those are emotional stories that appeal to the audience and lead to those songs topping charts.
You could create new graphics or artwork for the song and divide it into smaller pictures. A part of the artwork is released each day and by the time you release the last part of the divided artwork or graphics; the complete image shows in the form of a grid.
“The purpose is to find a different way to get people to respond to buying, streaming, or downloading the song while you are running other paid promotions.”
Dance, artworks, graphics, short video content, etc competitions can be organised in relation to the single track. The winners are awarded in cash or kind like being featured in your music video, privileged to a free Studio session, lunch meet, or as simple as vests or a copy/free download of your forthcoming album or EP.
Additionally, a lyric video or animation can be produced for the song on YouTube. Like the ones created for some of Joeboy’s songs.
Many upcoming artists believe radio stations can help in promoting their single track. But most cannot afford to pay for such. You can consider your University radio station or online podcasts from one or more of your friends.
Artists in record labels are not totally free from the work put into releasing and promoting their single track. So, you are not going to have it easy if you are an upcoming artist managing your growing career or passion off your savings.
Irrespective of how much you have or don’t have, remember that the success of your single track starts from the display of mastery on the song, your team’s competence, and capability. Also, the level preparation in marketing planning and general strategy.
Have you released and successfully promoted a song. Kindly share in the comment section the different strategies utilised.
Let’s face it, marketing, in general, is tough right? Especially when you have to record, perform, make appearances, have a life and be sane all at the same time, ah the life of a musician, but the thing is it doesn’t have to be so tough. Out of research and discussions with musicians and bands that are killing it successfully with social media.However, just to stretch it, having a smart social media presence is undoubtedly the best way to grow your audience and fill space at your shows/gigs.Now I know, a question you have on your mind is where should you start in fixing or switching up your social media game?Chill.In the article below, we’ve decided to talk about 9 new ways that when implemented properly will take your social media game to the next level, including how to properly set up your profiles and come up with a great content calendar that kills it.Now, without further ado, let’s dive right in!
#1: Get More Followers with Branded and Optimized ProfilesWhen your name is searched on search engines, what tends to come out is your social media pages, and you know what they say about first impressions. Having an optimized page makes that first impression very good and also helps you in converting them to followers, so having clean optimized profile pages on all your social media pages is key.Before worrying about contents for your pages, this has to be done very well and below are a few things you need to check done before moving forward and making sure this step is done properly.Your profile pictures and covers are properly sized and visible for their respective social media platformsMake sure your profile bio link counts by making it link to your latest work or promotion (either new song video, album, ep, show e.t.c)All profile information is up to date, accurate and error-freeYou don’t have to stop there, social media has no boundaries and you can also test out more creative ideas out, but make sure the 3 points mentioned above are properly done.Let’s take a look at a few accounts that nailed this perfectly,
African Artiste (Dunnie) with a great bio on Instagram
African Artiste (Dapo Tuburna) with a great bio on Facebook
African Artiste (Fireboy DML) with a great bio on Twitter
If you want the professional vibe and feel on your page but don’t have the budget for that, don’t fret, there are free tools out there that can help you out, tools like canva can do the job for you, you’ll thank me later for it:)Now that you have successfully gotten this part done, it’s time to move to great content creation, which is the main topic for the remaining part of this article.Nailing this part is very important in converting the new followers you have to loyal fans.Now, how do we do this? Great question!!#2: Let your followers in on the processYou shouldn’t be shy about letting your followers know what’s going on in your life, but as a musician, you should know this by now.Being real works!A new song, EP, video? Let them know.There is nothing bad infrequent hype and promotional posts are fair game considering how fast Facebook and Instagram updates their algorithm, so you should do it!In addition to that, it is a wise move to put up the latest promotions as pinned tweets or pinned posts to easily show your followers and fans your latest without having to scroll down.
African Artiste (Joeboy) Using Pinned Post or Tweet In Promoting their latest
African Artiste (Oxlade) Using Pinned Post or Tweet In Promoting their latest
Also as an addition, even if it’s still new, you should try incorporating social selling, according to Hoot-suite (Social selling is the art of using social networks to find, connect with, understand, and nurture sales prospects. It’s the modern way to develop meaningful relationships with potential customers that keep you—and your brand—front of mind, so you’re the natural first point of contact when a prospect is ready to buy.), test it out for your merch, you will be surprised at the outcome.
African Artiste (Mr Eazi) Using Social Selling
#3: Add Behind-the-scenes to your content This serves as an extension to the point we just concluded onWill state it again, being REAL works!Your followers and soon to be fans want to connect with you on a personal level, as much as the frequent promotion of your latest releases works, you have to let them in, let them see you write songs, record, shooting your music video, chilling and the likes.
African Artiste Recording In The Studio
These contents are not surprisingly the posts that have the highest engagements, and it also helps you in showing your personality to the very key world.
African Artiste (Mr Eazi) Eating or Playing
For this to work well, you have to consistently post, and the good thing is you don’t have to be an expert in this, as the saying “Have no fear of perfection – you’ll never reach it’, just take a quick shot or video and post to your Instagram stories or twitter, that real authenticity connects with your audience well.
It also serves as a very good content back up plan!
African Artiste Chilling
#4: Leverage UGC (User-Generated-Content) & Yourself In ActionUser-generated-content is a very good source of content, you should encourage your fans to share their contents of you or of themselves engaging with your works and to tag you or use special hashtags to find them.It is a brilliant way to show appreciation for the love your fans have for you, just imagine your role models reposting your post on their timeline, that warm feeling you get, you should gift that to your fans and be astonished by the ripple effect.
African Artiste Repost of UGC on InstagramWith that said, when you follow a talent on social media, it’s basically because you want to see them in action right?News flash, your followers feel the same way tooIf you perform regularly, showing off pictures, videos and shouting out people in attendance for your performances is a great way to start.
African Artiste (Blaq Bonez) Performing
As a note, posting new content does not have to be Hollywood like that requires huge production, if you have time which I believe you should for this because it’s important, there’s nothing wrong in making a video of you in your room or in the studio performing a song of yours (preferably unheard, a freestyle or a cover) to keep your feed fresh.
Social media post of African Artiste Performing (Simi) a song/freestyle In The Studio
Now that you know of some great content ideas, there are tools that can help you in the publishing of these contents, there is one that is making waves now and that we recommend which is Later, it helps you auto-publish on various social media platforms, all you have to do is to set it up by adding your content to it and setting a time to post, it can also help you with setting the best times to post and the best part is that it’s free, although it has paid plans too.
Screenshot of Later in action
#5: Engage with your fansYeah, I know, you heard this over and over again but it’s because it works so well!Interact a lot with your fans!They may have a question about your latest release or your next, showing you love or giving you suggestions, responding to them shows you are listening and that you appreciate them which will make them even more loyal t your brand.
Screenshot of African Artiste (Joeboy) Replying to fans comments
Set up sometime every day to respond to your fans on your various social platforms, even if it’s just 10-20 minutes daily, make sure you do this very basic yet very important step in the long run.
It is a well-known fact that tagging helps a lot in increasing the exposure of your content on social media platforms such as Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter.Where appropriate, it helps you a lot when you tag others in your posts.
Some examples of proper tagging includes;
Screenshot of African Artiste Shouting out a venue and clothing brand
And you never know, you might win yourself a repost from the brands or artistes you’re tagging, and by now, you know how many artistes have kicked off their careers properly because of this.
Mr Eazi’s repost of Joeboy
#7: Create Ads that Help You Get More Awareness and The Power of Collaborations
Let’s face it, social media is very competitive, but there’s a real opportunity if you leverage ads properly, which is just sending the right content to the right audiences. Running your own sponsored ads isn’t as difficult a lot of people make it sound like, but I know it can be scary for those who haven’t tried it out before.
Screenshot of Instagram Business Account for African Musician (Jeff Akoh)
There are various types of ads you can run from the traditional feed types ads to the new stories ads that will show up when your targeted audiences are going through their stories.The important thing here is that you are sending the right content to the right audience, then watch the magic happen!
Screenshot of Instagram Stories/Feed Ads Example of African Artiste (Zlatan Ibile)
On the bright side, targeting the right audience isn’t as technical as it sounds as platforms like Instagram has made it a whole lot easier by doing all the hard work for youInstagram helps you pull in a “similar audience” that you can then share the post to, or you can easily just create your audience in the app by choosing an interest, age range, location and the genders you want to promote to.
Screenshot of Setting Up Instagram Stories/Feed Ads Example For African Artiste
For example, if you’re posting a photo or video about your latest freestyle, and you know the majority of your audience are millennials, you can boost your post to people who are interested in music, live in Lagos, and between the age of 18-29.But remember as stated above, targeting your audience is only half the battle, knowing the right content to push that will connect with your fans is equally as important, so spend time in analyzing what content your fans love and which ones have the highest engagements, using analytics helps a lot with this.
Screenshot of Instagram Analytics
Finally, make sure you have a strong call-to-action in your ads. It is letting your fans know what action you want them to do (check out your profile out or directing them over to listen/download your latest work), you want to make sure you are guiding them over to where they can get to know more about you.
If you want to get more followers across various social media platforms at the same time without doing much at all, just leverage off the followers you already have on each of them!You’ll be surprised how many you have as followers on Instagram that aren’t followers on Twitter and vice versa.Invite followers from one platform to the other, you can do this by creating platform exclusive contents.
Screenshot of African Artiste (Jeff Akoh) sending his audience from one social platform to the other
#9: Start taking YouTube seriously
And last but not least, YouTube.While I know most likely you also are guilty of this, most musicians don’t seem to take this platform as serious as others like Instagram and Facebook, the platform’s crazy numbers say you are missing out a lot!As known, and it is a fact, YouTube is the number one place people stream music from, much bigger than apple music, Spotify, tidal and the rest combined! And by a large margin!
Successful African Artiste (Olamide) YouTube Page
Successful African Artiste (Nana Fofie) YouTube Page
As you know, people including you and me are much more familiar with YouTube than a lot of music streaming services out there, so making your music available on this platform makes a lot of sense.And I know YouTube doesn’t pay nearly as much as the streaming platforms out there, it does compensate for that by the numbers. Let’s talk about some tips to take your YouTube game to the next level!Your video descriptions need to be filled with tags and links, and the great thing is that YouTube gives you a lot of room to do this, so feel free to promote your other social media platforms here.
Screenshot of Successful African Artiste YouTube Video Description
Another way to look more like a pro is to optimize your video thumbnails, some simple text overlays can make you stand out from the crowd significantly.
Screenshot of Successful African Artistes YouTube Video Thumbnails
Lastly, a very effective way of getting massive traction to your YouTube page is to do cover songs or mashups.Check it out, it’s a common thread between successful YouTube profiles.This is especially helpful if you are up-and-coming, it gives you a long term way of exposing your works to new audiences.
Nanafofie’s Video Views
And that wraps up this guide!Any more questions on social media for musicians?See we get it: musicians are very busy.As a result, you will need to squeeze out the most you possibly can of your schedule.By optimizing your profiles and always having new and fresh content in mind, managing your accounts becomes second nature.We will love to hear from you, though. What do you think is the biggest challenge of social media for musicians? Which platforms are your top priorities? Let us know in the comments below!